Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Dona Nobis Pacem 2014

I was going to write this years  peace blog last week, get a knee up as it were. Unfortunately several things conspired against me, we'll call it life at a roar. Here I am the *day of* woefully unprepared and with no fewer than 6 skookum ideas, all fighting for a place on the page. I haven't felt this wordy in years. So bear with me and hopefully something half way intelligent and clear will appear.

First off I was going to tell you about my war. My personal battle with chronic illness and how I'm winning the damn thing. We've had a few skirmishes and outright knock 'em down fistfights, but I'm proving to be the victor!

Then there were the terrible attacks on two servicemen, and my battles seemed puny and small in comparison. What more is there to say about Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent and Corporal Nathan Cirillo? Our shock and outrage, our disbelief, our collective horror are still with us. Families are smaller, wives and mothers, sons and fathers and daughters are bereaved. Senseless.

Then there's the whole Jian Ghomeshi thing, the debacle. My problem with that whole situation was trying the man on social media. Sneaking around and getting him fired. Vilifying him and not going to the RCMP. Doing to him through the media what they claimed the media would do to them. A rape of public opinion, with no charges to back it up. Thankfully someone has finally filed a report with the RCMP and Mr. Ghomeshi will have the benefit of a proper trial, when and if he's ever charged. I'm not saying he's innocent, I'm not saying he's guilty. I'm saying he has the right to  properly defend himself, after all isn't that what the *Unknown* soldier who died in WW1 fought for? Isn't that what Cpl. Cirillo died for as well? Our rights and freedoms?

I was also going to mention my father in law and his battle with lung cancer. He fought hard, he fought clean, he was the bravest person, the most loving through his whole ordeal. He lost his war on July 31ST.  My husband has since lost an Uncle and an Aunt to cancer. Shit disease, sorry that's not very eloquent but it is. Shit.

I can rail against so much, but I've decided to give you a peek into my walking days, lighten it up and hopefully we can give thanks for everyone that went before so we could just be.

Last March I woke up one morning and decided I was entirely too fat. Now I had known for some time that I was entirely too fat. Believe me, fat people know they're fat. In fact it's all I could think of, it's what I muttered to myself every time I went past a mirror, had a shower, changed clothes, ate a meal.

"You're disgusting, you're a blimp, how can anybody love a moo pig like you? "

"You better do something about this piggy!"

"Fuck you're fat!"

"Why bother doing anything? "
These are but a few nuggets that ran constantly through my head.

I have Fibromyalgia, arthritis, and bone spurs. I've been off all related medicines for these conditions for years. No T3's, no Oxy, no Lyrica, no NSAIDs, no Amitriptyline no Prednesone. Nothing but the odd OTC like, Ibuprofen or Tylenol Arthritis. I use pepper cream and other topical creams and I soak my hands in wax. Kinda like the old Palmolive commercials. 

"You're soaking in it."

Anyway, my *conditions*, life in general and the bloody atmosphere had all conspired against me and I was fat. Fat fat the Water Rat! This was unusual, this was a former nervous 110lb dynamo who worked a full time job and had two babies a husband and a menagerie. I was never fat! 

I used to joke that, "I'm here for the food!" 
Stupid skinny bitch.

So what could a fat woman, with really bad joints and a limited budget do for herself? She could drink less beer and buy more lettuce, or she could walk. I chose walking. I walked around the dyke. Or I guess that's *on* the dyke. Two afternoons then I got an abscessed fang. Much dental work, expense and pain later we were back at it. I walked for about 6 weeks, never missing a day walking between 3-5 kilometers a day. My son was hospitalized during this and I walked off my worry.

I started off wearing my husbands old sweat pants and hoodie, it was after all March and I didn't need no stinking expensive lycra/spandex/gortex legging thingies. Sweat pants were good enough for the likes of me. Having never been so damn fat in my life I wasn't aware of chafing. Up to this point I thought chafing was a dish to keep your casserole warm. Ouchie momma, redthighsredthighs. (Sorry just read Dr Sleep, the sorta sequel to The Shining.) Needless to say I got my ever shrinking Ass to the Costco and bought a pair of lycra/spandex/gortex legging thingies. If that Lulu Lemon guy has something to say he better get in line.

The first few days *on* the dyke, I was lapped by a geriatric man who uses ski poles, not for show but to hold himself up. Wow was that ever an eye opener, I always walked fast. Yikes. I'll huff and puff etc. I had to get my shit together, move or die kept going through my head. I had already quit smoking in May 2012, so I needed to move.

My objective was to fit in my underwear. What? Yeah, you heard me, my underwear. They would roll down my belly. (not unlike a Venetian blind)They were huge, I called them gups. An acronym for GIANT UNDERPANTS. Here I was, 52 years old, in my gups and  lycra/spandex/gortex legging thingies walking *on* the dyke with geriatric alpine equipment users. What new Hell was this?

My underwear also included my bras. I was down to one bra that fit. I had a whole whack of them in the drawer, a bakers dozen. Padded, un-padded, red, black, blue, purple, pink, beige every colour of the rainbow.

" Underwire?" 

" Don't mind if I do!"

Thing is they were way too small. The bra that fit was a sorry thing. It had patches,it really did. The under-wire would poke it's head out every now and then and poke my underarm roll. I'd sew it up, put a patch on it. The thing was so stretched, and thin that I don't know how it stayed together. My bra of many colours finally disintegrated in the wash in early May. There was no service. Luckily by then I had another old one I could just squeeze into. I was not buying a bra, they are expensive and I had a gazillion of them. I just needed to walk off some flubber.

I started walking at the track, nice cushioned lanes, like walking on butter and no dogs. I love dogs, but when I'm walking I don't like them running in front of me and lets face it some owners don't pick up their dogs poop. Walking *on* the dyke was becoming a hop on the dyke. Hop over this pile, hop over that pile. Disgusting.

I walk most mornings. Now I won't stop unless I've done a minimum of 4 kilometers. I lap people now.....IN YOUR FACE! I have more energy, I still don't sleep, I still need to soak my hands, but my mobility has increased. The last week or so I've walked in some pretty crappy weather, but I didn't melt.

I'm down 7 bra sizes, I can put my arms at my sides now, two gup sizes, two shirt sizes and I'm wearing pants that haven't fit since 2011. I've had all my yearly tests done and my cholesterol is bueno, same with my blood pressure. Hopefully I can go off the lipitor and enalapril by next year. I only drink once a month or so now, and don't miss it. Still miss smoking though. Always will I think. People who aggravated me are gone from my life too. I was always worried about what people would think of me, now not so much. I live for me now, not anybody else.

So am I at peace with my body? As if.....we have an uneasy ceasefire for now.