(November 19, 2006)

I could be wrong, but it seems like I’ve whinged my way through a few of my posts this month. Living with chronic pain has been a challenge, to say the least. I’m not entirely sure which is worse: the pain or the depression that comes from it. As someone who is used to helping others and being busy, it’s been difficult to find myself in this position of needing help and feeling useless.

I’m sure there’s a lesson in all of this. What I’m not sure of is how to sum it up.

This past weekend was our early Thanksgiving celebration. M the Elder and I decided to do it early this year because of the move and plans involving the move. M the Elder and M the Younger (otherwise known as the M&M’s) will be going back east the day after Thanksgiving to move some furniture into the new apartment. I won’t be accompanying them on this trip as, well, I’m useless for this purpose. I can’t move heavy furniture (or light furniture, for that matter) and it’s the long car trips (I’m convinced) that put me in this sciatica hell in the first place.

I loved having all of my little family here with us over the weekend. I always do. I’m grateful that we all have our health (even in this pain, I’m not dying so that’s something to be grateful for) and that we all have each other.

If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, “thank you,” that would suffice. ~Meister Eckhart

I don’t know about God or gods or Buddha or the Universe or any of that. But I do know about Love. And I’m grateful to have experienced it. I am thankful for my family and friends, all of them.

Being with my family this weekend pulled me up and out of the depression I was sinking into. Sunday morning I found myself moving beyond the existence of pain and pain meds. In fact, I didn’t feel the need for the pain meds so I didn’t take any. I went overboard and picked up my granddaughter a few times. I felt it later. That’s ok. It was worth it.

I have a tendency to gush about being a grandmother and spending time with my granddaughter. I’m willing to bet just about every grandparent does the same. There’s something about spending time with Emma that opens up my heart and my eyes. As with my own children, it allows me to see through the eyes of a child (“beginner’s eyes”), but in a different way. Perhaps grandchildren are the way to unconditional love. Easy for me to say since I’m not called upon to babysit on a regular basis. (Not that I’d mind. In fact, I’d love the opportunity to babysit!)

In other news…

Today is No Work Monday for me. It’s odd, not having to get up with the alarm and set off to work for a long day in the pharmacy. It’s nice, too.

My ex-boss, T, had a party for me last night. It was very nice. Good food, good company, and some tasty rum punch. T wants me to come back and work with her when we move back after the sabbatical. It’s a nice offer to have if I should decide I want to work in a pharmacy again.

It’s snowing here in the Bogs today. I’d post a picture of it, but I absentmindedly left my camera behind at the party last night. I’m hoping to pick it up today (just waiting for T to call me back about it). I carry the camera around with me practically everywhere. This is the first time I’ve forgotten it. It’s not a good thing to be leaving behind an expensive piece of equipment (especially one with memories tucked into it).

When I was younger, I could remember anything, whether it had happened or not; but my faculties are decaying now and soon I shall be so I cannot remember any but the things that never happened. It is sad to go to pieces like this but we all have to do it. ~Mark Twain