Sunday, August 05, 2007
I left a homesick and pouty man behind me today.
I hated doing it, but at the same time I knew that he wouldn't be acting that way if he wasn't feeling great and healing at the speed of light.
He's ready to come home, but I want the last days of his greatest vulnerability passed in a safe place. He's not impressed by the PT, but it's on his schedule and he does it. Physical things have always been easy for him, and he has a tendency to "take a swipe at it" and call it done, simply because that's all he has to do with most things.
The hard stuff, like consistency and habits, that takes more persistence. As it does for all of us. It's a focus problem.
In my own life, plagued with myofascial pain, physical activity kept the pain away, and has kept me from being as overweight as the rest of my family. I live in real panic of ending up anything like my family. It's a hellish motivation, and a strong one...
Our difference in approach brings conflict, of course. It's a matter of personal experience. I'm a detailed and dogged pursuer of success, and he tends to be able to finesse things rather quickly, and become disinterested and distracted after a certain time period. Naturally, he finds me impossibly stubborn, and I find him flighty. In other things, we are entirely too similar, but mostly, we complement one another in some very complex and comfortable ways.
I brought sticks and a dogi, and did my own practice until he was done with his PT. He came into the nice little room we had found (mirror, high ceiling, softish floor, wall of windows, perfect dojo!) critiqued, pointered and guided.
I accomplished my goal, which was to get a weapon in his hands before he left rehab. He was seated on a bench, making comments and demonstrating.
Honestly, the struggles of simply standing and becoming strong enough to move normally again are enough for even the most advanced of athletes, at this stage.
He's comparing his experience, and today he walked a few blocks through a German fest to my favourite (fast becoming our favourite) little Biergarten in Bad Abbach, der Zirngibl. I just liked saying it, at first, but there's more to love, like the quiet apple orchard and the weird city statue of a pair of legs with a big catfish wrapped around the top of it outside the biergarten gate.
Many talk about being completely helpless for weeks, and he stood up, walked out the door of his room, and back, the very first day after the operation.
Today he walked about 5 blocks. Slowly, carefully, but with less pain than he's had since before January.
I'm not sure if it's German cultural expectations, one of the best surgeons in the west, my CG's natural resilience or good loving care, but he's getting back into his game. At 50, he's perhaps more patient than he was half a lifetime ago... but the impatience of a strong man used to command of his body is a force only the man himself can reckon with.
For my part, I find myself more cowdog than sheepdog, as my quarry is big and impatient, and as he gets ever more on his own feet, it will be ever more easy for him to go astray.
My best hope is to just stand on the best path I can see and trot forward, because I know he wants to be with me.
The label for this post comes from a "state of the nation" email from a young friend of ours.
I don't do this out of some exhibitionistic desire to inflict my life on millions of people. Goodness knows, this stuff is going to bore the crapola out of 99.999... percent of people out there, unless they or their loved ones are dealing with a hip replacement, or do budo, or know us.
If you want to know why I do this, it's for love of the word. I love words, I love playing with them, and the greatest motivation I have is to talk about my life. I've gotten a lot of negative feedback about my writing, and some positive. As with my artistic endeavours, I write to please and challenge myself. I need a place where I'm not writing for anyone else. I need a place to just PLAY. I explained this in detail in my very first posts.
This is that place.
I do it for the love of the word.
I told our young friend Z "Don't ever apologize for what you have to say. Just keep sayin' it."