When I woke up yesterday morning and raised my body to get out of bed, my first thought was ‘FUCK. THIS.’ It was not a Folgers-in-your-cup kind of morning. Instead, it was one that elicited tears and made me wonder how much better I would feel if I were dead.
Not only is my uterus trying to destroy me, but I have a pain in my back that is so extreme simply existing is taxing. When I met my Chiropractor for an assessment of my back, he asked me, with a hint of gleeful anticipation, ‘What makes your back feel better?’ and my deadpan response was, ‘Not breathing.’ The x-rays he took confirmed the no breathing thing, and his assessment was that I was totally not messing around. I needed help. My back is in bad shape, and since ‘not breathing’ is not an option, he devised a plan of attack intent on relieving me of the horror plaguing me on a daily basis.
After four solid weeks of treatment, though, and spending $1200, I feel no better than the first day I rolled into his office clutching tightly to a dream and a glimmer of hope that he would be my saviour. So, when I woke up yesterday morning with soul crushing pain yet again, not only in my uterus but my back as well, I was at my wit’s end. I allowed my mind to roam out of bounds and made no effort to rein it in – I couldn’t have, even if I tried. I was a total disaster, and by noon I was hanging by a thread.
But, somehow I made it through the last 4 hours of my work day and made my way back to the place I am currently pet sitting. I loaded the two big boys I am looking after into my go-cart of a car and headed to the dog park. As we were walking, I came across a woman who knew the dogs, because she knew the owner very well. And right there, as if destiny had intervened, we began talking about our dreams and what it was that we were both striving to achieve. She has a strong desire to go to Africa but is hesitant to go alone. I shared with her my love of New York City, and how easily I navigated it alone, without fear. I encouraged her to find a way to go to Africa because it is her dream and only she can make it happen.
New York City is my dream, will always be my dream, but I have had the opportunity to feel it, breathe it, and live it. And I made it clear that I wanted her to have the same experience by going to Africa. ‘YOU HAVE TO GO‘ I squealed at her. I was ignited. She was ignited. And my mind was no longer focussing on pain, only my dreams. As I stood there, excitedly explaining to her why I was doing what I am doing; our conversation reminded me exactly why I was walking in that dog park. I couldn’t believe how it all came flooding back. I am damaged but am still giving it all I have and am fighting my way through the pain with the hope of accomplishing the impossible. I am moving forward, despite it all. I really am. Holy shit. Even though I could have, I HAVEN’T GIVEN UP!!
Look at me. Here is a photo of us last night at the dog park. As you can see, I don’t even need to pack extra luggage; I have enough under my eyes to accompany me around the world. What I see when I look at this photo is exhaustion, pain, and endless struggle. But, what I should see, what I must see, is my dream, and some of the things I love that are helping me make my dream come true. Beside me are two beautiful souls, who can’t speak, but who need me. Despite our brief time together, they love me. And I love them. I really do. It is my job to keep them safe and happy, and though I feel like a big bag of balls, I am doing just that. I am a goddamn doggy goddess.
So, today I rose from my bed, in pain, but determined, and in possession of a profound appreciation for yet another day. As Jenny Lawson would say, ‘I AM HERE.’ I am, and I have no intention of going anywhere but forward. I CAN DO THIS!
This evening, after a busy day of running around buying prophylactics for my back and swollen insides, and after walking two precious dogs for miles, I decided that what I needed to do was chill the hell out. I needed to breathe. To relax, take in the sun and live in the moment. And to be free of the stress and worry bogging me down. So, I stopped by the liquor store for a bottle of wine. And, as though the universe knew what was up, I was led directly to the message I needed to receive. Perfect.
Of course, I bought it. HELLO!
As I sat in the sun this evening, accompanied by the love of two hounds, I sipped my wine slowly, and I looked up.
Shit most certainly could be worse.
And every jet stream I witnessed was the reminder I needed, that there are many places I am destined to go. That I will go.
My pain is only temporary.
On my list of things to do tomorrow – buy some goddamn lipstick.