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Monday, September 6, 2010

Life in the "Normal" lane

So, I've been absent from here for a while. It's not that I haven't thought about blog posts. In fact, I regularly compose them in my head. It's not that I don't sit down at the computer any more. Those of you on facebook know that's certainly not true.

I don't really know what it is that keeps me from blogging, other than it is harder and harder to sustain the intellectual energy required for longer pieces of discourse. I can snap off facebook updates easily, probably too easily. Certainly, I do that too frequently. However, crafting and sustaining coherent larger pieces of discourse just seems beyond my capabilities lately. In fact, I'm barely able to sustain coherence long enough to get the writing done that I need to do for work.

This is partially due to my cognitive capacity being damaged from chemo, for sure.

But even more so, I think it is due to the fact that there have been so many changes lately, over the past four months or so.

For one thing, I'm back at work, so I have to expend energy in that direction. More on that in another entry. For another, I'm going to bed a lot earlier, with the exception of tonight. For yet another, I've been getting up earlier in the mornings, but I'm not yet capable of figuring out what to do with myself during that time, being newly converted to being awake during the early hours. Furthermore, I'm no longer watching much tv, which is when I used to do quite a bit of writing. I just can't bring myself to watch tv any more. Sort of like those people who eat a favorite food to the point it makes them sick and then can't eat it any more, I no longer can really tolerate watching tv any more. I don't even have much of a desire for any of my favorite shows, to the point I can't even order the dvds from Netflix. I'm also using quite a bit more time exercising, so that detracts from the time I used to be able to devote to my blog. In fact, it's not unusual for me to be physically active for two or more hours a day. For instance, last week, I met a friend and ran in the morning before going to teach, taught from 9:30-2:30, then did a 2 hour bike ride, and went for a pedicure. Sure, it was only 7:00 by the time all of that was finished, but when one is typically heading for bed by 9:30 or 10:00, there just doesn't seem to be enough time to blog.

And I do miss it. I compose entries in my head whilst running and biking. I will admit that I don't while in the midst of the exercise classes I've been taking. Mostly what runs through my head during those is not fit to be printed where it might be read by those with tender sensibilities. Maybe those who have survived basic training in the military could read it, but the rest of you are probably better off without.

But the changes a friend asked me to write about, the new normal, are still becoming apparent.
For one, I no longer enjoy or crave animal flesh. While not by any means a vegetarian, I certainly won't go out of my way for meat and rarely consume it. In fact, last week, I made lasagna for Sunday evening dinner and bought the Morningstar Farms version for myself because the idea of the meat in the lasagna just turned me off at a deep, visceral level.

Second, I'm really enjoying life quite a bit and I'm generally not being bothered by little things that used to bother me. When I am bothered by little things, those kinds of things that really don't matter in the grand scheme of things, I'm much more aware that I'm being bothered by silliness and recognize it for what it is.

Third, I have gotten quite a bit stronger. In March, I could barely sustain 60 seconds of jogging followed by 90 seconds of walking for a total of 20 minutes. Last week, I ran 4.5 miles without any walking and wasn't tired. I stopped because my feet hurt and because my back hurt. OK, so "ran" is probably a misnomer for what I did. But I can certainly say I was truly "jogging."

And, finally, as of today, I've officially dropped yet another pants (jeans) size. That's about 7 sizes in two years and probably 50 lbs in the months.

But really, I have a lot more musing rolling around in my head, and someday, I'm sure I'll sweep them into a corner, sort them out, and turn them into something sharable.

I promise.

But meanwhile, off to bed.


Theresa Williams said...

Sounds pretty positive, most of it. I gave up TV, too. I remember after my surgery, for about two years, I had a hard time concentrating. I had a lot of the same things as you describe, actually. I'm impressed with your exercise regime!

Debbie said...


Anonymous said...

So cool.

Normal is good, even if it means less blogging. Bad stuff makes for good reading but bad living.

Pancake Goddess said...

gawd dawn, the exercise piece is so freaking awesome. seriously badass. I am NOT exercising a lot although I am daily a bit. Also losing interest in tv, but I can't be sure that will last.

Just listened to this - not sure what about your post reminded me of it, but it was extremely interesting and motivated me to limit my quick on and off screens all day long.

Lovemyfam said...

I heart you, I think you are awesome! I wish I could express my meanderings as well as I feel I relate to yours!