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Here’s to Health

I have been on the computer reading my e-mails for 4 hours now. Some time has been looking for a job – it is so over-whelming, especially when every job requires some “twigging” on the resume. I did have an interview one week ago and it seemed to go positively.Admittedly, I didn’t go with the utmost of enthusiasm; however, as I heard more details, I become more interested. I should find out by Monday and in the meantime sent a thank-you note with some positive  comments about the desire to work with their company.

I am horribly out of shape and have gained lots of pounds which isn’t too impressive when you go waddling/limping into a job interview for a recreation position.   I used to push so hard and injured my wayward knee a couple of times and it took a long time to heal and now I know that I have arthritis in my knee.

What the heck , I am older. Getting inactive when you get older is serious, because it is much harder to get back into shape and I will never be where I was at in my twenties, thirties or even forties.  The trick is to focus on what I can do, and never give up.

I can tell you what doesn’t work:

Isolation, self pity, sitting around too much at the computer, binging on licorice, ju jubes, pizza, cheese, pop, especially the larger sizes that are a “good buy”.

What does work? I am starting to turn the eating thing around  with  small portions of meat, home-made soups,(canned is so expensive and I was inspired by Livin’ and Lovin’s  colourful and delicious  and nutritional soup today)

I am taking some herbs for bone health that a lot of people swear by. That and walking are good for arthritis. One year ago I couldn’t walk one block after twisting my knee but now can get quite a few blocks – I persevered.

I am only in my latter 50’s now and ooh not too good, but I am reading Jane Fonda’s book, Prime Time and actually relieved to read that although she goes hiking, she hasn’t been able to jog for 10 years. Her exercise video is a good  but gentle workout. I can not only hope to be in as good shape as her in my 70’s, I can work for it.

A friend gave me free pass for three visits to the “Y” I started going to yoga two weeks ago and it didn’t hurt so much the day after like the first time. I want to invest in this. It keeps me flexible as well as get back some stretch and strength that I have lost. I went on a “mall walk”  the other day because it was too slippery outside. I walked , I didn’t shop. (well-l-l-…I stopped to look at a couple of things).I am poor due to unemployment but bought some comfortable fitting clothes at the thrift store that allow for comfortable movement. I am in less pain that way and can move better.

Next week I am having a broncoscopy done ,  something I was dreading until I changed how I looked at it. I still do not like the idea of being sedated nor of having a tube down my throat and into my lungs.  I have chronic lung infections possibly one that has been around some time and never really goes away, thus many bouts  of pneumonia… I am practising turning the fear into calm using prayer. I am more excited about the fact that once we can figure out the problem,we can work on a solution.

I can balance the job search  with exercise and it still works to show up at a company to hand over a resume rather than just sit at a computer. And I can get ready for photo competitions and workshops by taking photos and getting fresh air and a little exercise. It definitely boosts my spirit.

I am drinking more water, something that feels good instantly as well as over the long term. I am getting healthy.

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Morning Sun-A Bright Beginning

Such Drama! But thanks for listening.

I did go on about being ill and so publicly, the exact opposite of what my mother taught me. “don’t hang your dirty laundry in public.” I admit that I was scared and my thinking can take off madly in all directions at the best of times, but when I am sick? Oh boy.

I am feeling better today, partially because the new antibiotics are kicking in and partially because I phoned the learning centre today and withdrew, precisely so I can take the time I need to recuperate.

It was one thing to take the workshops but when the  actual job search started on top of that, when I didn’t feel well in the first place, it was too much. I was pushing myself then, doing things outside of work and going to doctors, acquiring clothes and the balance got tipped.  I think that the combination of the illness plus the nature of the medications  put me on a bit of a roller coaster ride of emotional highs and lows and anything but rational thinking. But that is what happens when you get sick. It is good to have a support system of friends who can drop in or call and help you make decisions regarding whether you are sick or well, whether to get up or stay in bed, take time off or push yourself a little more. Thank goodness for friends including blog friends who have been giving me feedback.

Yes, I have been into the drama. And the self-pity. And the resentment at the “system” that rewards workaholism and 60 hour weeks and going beyond the call of duty. A lot of us are working in merged jobs where it used to take two people to do the duties. As I pushed harder and got more out of touch with myself  and more out of control, I  really felt like it was survival of the fittest and I was losing , big time.

Some of the pushing paid off. I got pro-active about my health and finding out what was going on with the cough that never goes away. A little scary, but not surprising, is the discovery of a drug-resistant bacteria .There might be some further investigation with tests and visits to a lung specialist. The good thing is, I am on pretty powerful antibiotics that should work to defeat this bacteria and actually heal me.

I share this so others may grasp an answer they have been looking for, or find that point of connection that says “oh yes, I know what you mean.”  It is very important for me to keep in touch with the things that I love and the people that I love and the quiet time in my little corner where I can breathe, be still and listen. Especially important when I am “not myself.” It has been quite the week for a lot of us: health issues, family issues, hurricane Sandy. Be good to yourself and take the time. I am.

©Jane Chesebrough