It’s raining. It has rained, off and on, since yesterday. The rain causes me some pain, but I simply love to watch it pour, or sprinkle. When I was a child, the thunder and lightning used to frighten me because it was so very much bigger than me. Now, when it storms, I love just shutting off the TV, computer, etc. and just listen to it all. Yes, the storm is still a lot bigger than me, and I understand the scientifics of it, but it still gives me a sense of wonder because human kind is not in charge of everything. There are things that will never be tamed in my lifetime, and I am glad for that, even if there is some danger in storms – even in the city.
Summer is coming to a close. This is one of the things all the rain and storms are telling me. I also feel it in my bones. (Those with fibromyalgia and arthritis know what I mean.) Things are changing slowly from summer to fall. Usually I end up a little depressed when the leaves start to fall. This year I am wondering if this will be the same because it has been such a “different” type of summer than most for me because of the arthritis flare. Usually the pain in fall and winter slows me down, but, this summer, I have already been slowed down so I doubt, honestly, I will be staying in the house as much as normal with the season changes: Pain is pain and I have hurt more since March than I have hurt for many years. Although I am not used to the pain – no one ever truly gets used to being in pain, you just learn to deal with it – but I have adjusted, which means this fall and winter, as long as the winter ice and snow cooperate, I should be able to get out more. The “adjustment” has been made from less pain to “here we go again” pain, and this is OK.
I said this to an acquaintance of mine recently and she looked at me as if I had suddenly grown a second head. “What do you mean ‘it’s OK’?!” she exclaimed. “Hurting, pain is NEVER a good thing.” I agreed with her, it isn’t, but this doesn’t mean you give in to it any more than is necessary. You keep going. You keep having a life, even though some things about the life and living have to change to accommodate the health situation. As you adjust things become “OK” – there is still much pleasure to have out of life; there are still friends to talk to and get-togethers to attend, even if the place happens to become your apartment, like mine has; you can still do what you love, writing; and you can still enjoy the love you have around you. I tried to explain all of this to her, but it was as if she simply couldn’t, or wouldn’t even attempt to understand. For her, being in pain, being slowed down was the equivalent of having her life being over. If her current pace was not kept up and the things she was doing now were not continued, then there was really no reason for her to keep going, keep on living. I would understand this statement from someone who was in their twenties, but this lady is in her sixties! I asked her if she hadn’t already slowed down some, and her response was she had taken on more and wasn’t looking to retire until her late seventies.
We parted with her looking at me as if I could never understand what “having a life” meant, and me feeling very sorry for her because she was only looking at work and constant movement as living. Always being active working, keeping up with the children, grandchildren, and in some instances great-grandchildren, isn’t what having a life is about. It is only a part of it, a necessary and usually enjoyable part of living. However, there is also the necessity of learning to take what happens in life, good and bad, and not let it stop you or make you feel as if you don’t have a real life to live any more.
Sorry, she just got me to thinking about everything and I wanted to share the experience with you all.