Saturday, March 27, 2010

Nature, and Healing

Bleeding Hearts

Well, today Im making the attempt at working the garden. It's just too sunny and gorgeous to stay inside and be sad. The apple trees are blooming, and it might just be warm enough to lure the bees outside and into my garden.

Yesterday was truly a suck day, today is better, only in that the sun is helping, nature is helping. I forget that, and get caught up in the tailspin of depression. I forget that when I was a kid growing up in the country the only place I ever felt truly "me" was outside. Up a tree, climbing the branches to a place I could sit, and simply be. Gaze out over the pastures, and fields, watch the swallows coming and going from their mud nests in the barn eves. Hidden from everyone, safe. I was just me, and the land understood.

When I was sick I would beg to go outside, just so I could lie on the ground in the sunshine, smell the clean air, feel the earth beneath me. Once when I was deathly ill my Hungarian pediatrician told my Mother the best thing for me was to let me go outside and sit in sunshine, lie on the earth, feel the clean air, the antibiotics were not working, so maybe the sunshine worked. Smart man.Old world wisdom.

So today I decided until the pain lays me low or paralizes me I'm going to dig in my garden, plant my veg and soak up Mother Earths life. It's the only thing I know that helps.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


The Austrian Oak's back, not mine. Mine is much smaller, and hurts like hell.
I suspect the cause is thus, I have been Elf/Alf shot!

‘Elf-shot’ is a concept which will need little introduction to students of Anglo-Saxon
culture, and the thrust if not the words of Singer’s statement in his British Academy
lecture of 1919, ‘Early English Magic and Medicine’ (1919–20, 357), will be
a large amount of disease was attributed … to the action of supernatural
beings, elves, Æsir, smiths or witches whose shafts fired at the sufferer
produced his torments. Anglo-Saxon and even Middle English literature is
replete with the notion of disease caused by the arrows of mischievous
supernatural beings. This theory of disease we shall, for brevity, speak of as
the doctrine of the elf-shot. The Anglo-Saxon tribes placed these malicious
elves everywhere, but especially in the wild uncultivated wastes where they
loved to shoot at the passer-by.

Elves were thought to be invisible or hard-to-see creatures who shot their
victims with some kind of arrow or spear, thus inflicting a wound or
inducing a disease with no other apparent cause (elfshot). They appear to be
lesser spirits than the Æsir (Odin, Thor, Frigga) deities, but with similar armaments in spears andarrows. … This attack by elves was eventually linked with Christian ideas of
demons penetrating or possessing animals and people, who then needed
Ohhhhh...So That's what's going on with my back! Well at least that's what it feels like..I guess I better make right with the Alfs/elves so they knock this shit off.

So yesterday I wrote of my heinous back pain, I went for a nice massage, which helped calm me down, but still the nasty little spear man was jabbing me to death. I tried to watch the tube while not thinking about how uncomfortable it all was just trying to relax, but gave up. Chronic pain is exhausting, if you have experienced it you know what I mean.
It sucks all life and energy and hope out of you. It's like being hunted down, chased for miles and never really getting to rest. Or at least that's how I see it.
So I ate a handful of ibuprofen and laid in bed wishing I could die.
Finally after a crappy night of not much sleep it was time to go see The Dr. and see what could be done. I explained to her the situation with my back, and ribcage, the pain etc..Did I have a slipped disc? Did I need an MRI I can't afford? X-rays? A shot of tiger tranquilizers maybe..

'No," she explained "that I needed a good rib crunching, to put the ribs back into position, cold packs, REST, and a deep massage from the lovely and Mighty Alicia." So crack me she did.
I have to say Iam sore, but the truly deep evil pain is subsiding, just like she said it should.
She stressed the REST part, not even light yoga, certainly not laundry shlepping, blacksmithing, bodybuilding, or lifting anything heavier than a cup of tea or a cold beer.
She was even dubious about me doing dishes.
So the amazing Hubbinator has been handling the heavy stuff today, like mucking out the cat boxes, hauling the heavy laundry basket, bringing me's all very swell.
He is being very wonderful through this whole ugly episode, while I watch a Time Team marathon and drink green tea while lying on a frozen hunk of beef roast.
Pain relief and dinner thawed in one! Amazing!
Okay time for more cold pack, and another cup of tea. Here's hoping this all starts mending up, and I can get some damn sleep. I will also be sure to honor the Land Spirits more often and generously, being Alf shot sucks.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Hail the Growing season springtide comes..

"Erce, Erce, Erce, Mother of Earth,
May Thor Almighty grant you, the Thunder Lord ,
Fields sprouting and springing up,
Fertile and fruitful,
Bright shafts of shining millet,
And broad crops of barley
And white wheaten crops
And all the crops of earth.
Ahh happier days in the garden, just a few weeks ago.
Note how warm it was, me in no sleeves...and the sexy new tartan wellies..a fancy gift from Marta the Honey Voiced. My back not in it's current state of excruciating..

The Hubbinator and I decided the ugly raised wood beds had to go. Mostly they were home to a zillion slugs and snails, and too small to grow "enough' of anything really. That and we also were sick of trying to mow the lawn between them.
So, one truckload of bedding dirt later, there you have it. We laid down woodchip for paths, made lovely earthen rows for veg. I did NOT shovel, he did. I raked, and fussed and planted beets and peas. Heirloom English shelling peas, and Oregon sugar snap. mmm peas...
I have lots of plans for the garden, but if I can't get my back pain under control it's just gonna be beets and peas I fear.

My usual back issue is my lower back. The discs between L3 and L5 are trying to escape and shrink, and this causes great pain and a cramping of my normally active style.
BUT I have learned how to "deal" with it. Painful yes, but nothing compared to the latest adventure in pain.
One of my ribs is "out", the muscles just under my right scapula, and the surrounding muscles of my ribs are strained. The muscle spasm squeezing the hell out of a nerve in my mid back.
It is nonstop. Nothing helps.
It feels like (I would imagine) a red hot spear being shoved into my back, and then drawn across my ribs..All the damn time.
There is no escape, no amount or shifting, stretching, lying on one side or the other will stop this agonising pain. It has brought me to sobbing tears. Honestly, I wouldn't wish it on anyone, well, except a few people, like Hitler.

What did I do to cause this ghastly injury?
I reached back behind my head to brush my freakin' hair is what.
Yep. I reached behind my head when "WHAM!' the muscle felt like it had been hit with a hot poker under my right scapula. everything seized up.
I think I said"You have to be freaking kidding me!!! Noooooo! before collapsing onto the bed in agony.
I probably strained it doing squats, and the lifter muscles under my shoulder blade got so strained, but not enough to become a full blown muscle spasm. Then when I asked them to do something simple like brushing my hair they said
So off I go to the chiropractor to get things reset. Mmm can't wait for that special popping a rib back into place pain tommorrow, but it has to be done.
BUT first I get a deep tissue massage this evening I hope it helps.