Ordinarily, I fret a lot about how my words come across. I care enormously about how I’m perceived, if I’m setting the right tone, if I’m making myself understood, if I provide something that others can resonate with.
Right now, though, I just don’t give a crap.
At the risk of appearing ungrateful, I think I will go right ahead and vent. I will vent like a girl. I will vent until I feel a wee bit better. I will, annoyingly, vent, on this here blog. Surely there are 5 billion blog posts floating around in the ether that are similarly grumpy and annoying; this one will join the others in that vast cesspool of digital blather.
So with that warning, onward.
On Thursday, Tom called in sick to work because of back pain. It was bothersome, but we didn’t worry too much about it. On Friday, he called in sick again, for the same reason. By Friday night, it seemed to have cleared up considerably. Then on Saturday afternoon, the pain came back with a vengeance. Overnight, my husband became a recliner-bound invalid, unable to move or do anything for himself because of the pain.
Meanwhile, I have been in the throes of a bad cold and feeling like all I want to do is crawl in bed. Instead, I’ve been taking care of Lily, taking care of Tom, worrying a lot, enduring the onset of an especially heavy and crampy menstrual period, blowing my nose and coughing all the time. Also, on Sunday afternoon and this morning, I spent six hours at farmer interviews for Grow Food Northampton. (The incomparable Moe was instrumental in making this possible today, by watching Lily and transporting Tom to his appointment with the chiropractor. Lily was heartbroken at the prospect of Moe having to go back to work after lunch.)
Tom was pretty devastated after the visit with the chiropractor. He was really hopeful that he would be feeling a lot better when he walked out. Instead, the chiropractor said his lumbar vertebrae were definitely out of alignment, and that he might have a disc issue and probaby needs an MRI and that he needed to call his primary care physician right away. There was no quick fix. Tom hobbled out with the cane he bought from CVS today and I loaded him into the car. This is day 5 of back pain for Tom, and getting worse all the time. He is very worried about missing work. We are both very worried about the seriousness of whatever injury he has; he’s simply unable to function, and I have 100% responsibility for taking care of him, Lily, and myself, in our various bedraggled states.
Tom is now lying on a mattress on the living room floor, since he isn’t using the stairs. He is feeling very helpless and panicky and sad. It breaks my heart.
Tomorrow Tom has an appointment with our family physician, who will hopefully arrange an MRI and stronger pain meds ASAP.
Meanwhile, I am needing to cancel everything else that was planned this week. This includes my much-anticipated retreat at Temenos. I am really, really disappointed. I was so looking forward to it. And now the chance has been snatched away from me. I can’t leave Tom in this state. It’s not his fault, of course. I know he feels terrible about it.
Tonight I reached an almost comic state of wretchedness. I developed a nosebleed that wouldn’t stop. I kept applying pressure for 15 minutes at a stretch, and it just kept going. This was right when I was trying to cook dinner and trying not to completely freak out. I had to stop cooking in order to apply pressure to my nose and control the bleeding. This made me more anxious because we were all hungry. In the midst of all this I had the bright idea to describe the whole sorry scenario on Facebook and received a flurry of get-well wishes and offers of food and child care. This cheered me up quite a bit but did not stop the bleeding. I packed yarrow-tincture-soaked gauze into my nostril, which helped somewhat. I almost took a picture of myself with a piece of gauze hanging out of my nose, because I was mesmerized by the wretchedness and wondered if it looked as bad as it felt. At least I had both hands free at that point and could continue cooking dinner.
I thought it might be cathartic to vent like this, but it isn’t.