Food For Thought: Alone

I’ve been living alone for the past few months, enjoying it more now that I am no longer constrained by a cast on my right foot. In living alone, I have found, as Krishnamurti notes, a “greater awareness for self-discovery”.

“There is no such thing as living alone, for all living is relationship; but to live without direct relationship demands high intelligence, a swifter and greater awareness for self-discovery.” ~ J. Krishnamurti

Alone in the garden of many…

(Photo: White Tulip with Red Stripes ~ c. Pamela J. Leavey 2012)

Reflections: Progress

After 11 weeks in some sort of a cast on my right foot, I am finally free. Free!

What a relief… But now the work begins. I got the okay to not sue my air cast any longer on Monday and yesterday I jumped right into PT. I’m done with laying and sitting around and ready to be outdoors walking and enjoying Mother Nature.

Right before I fell, I had been walking 3 – 4 days a week, mostly on the trails at Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, and I am itching to get back on those trails.

Years ago I walked 4 – 5 days week, when my daughter was young and it was so healing for me: body, mind and soul. I was just starting to feel the endorphins kick in after about 3 – 4 weeks of walking when I fell.

My physical therapist asked what my goals were yesterday and I told her walking. As we talked more, I explained to her that I have a dream in the back of my mind that I would like to see come to fruition in the next couple of years and that is to walk The Camino.

I explained that I had recently watched The Way, and it renewed my desire to make the trek:

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One day at a time for now… slowly, steadily building up strength, flexibility, balance and agility. Walking The Camino is no walk in the park, it is in fact a pilgrimage or spiritual adventure, depending on your religious views or lack there of.

I can honestly say now that I am starting to build up my strength again, the past 11 weeks were truly a very difficult time in my life. I am grateful to have had a really good orthopedic doctor who immediately recognized my injury as a Lisfranc sprain. it’s a complicated injury, that will takes weeks of PT to finish my recovery.

And then… Well, there’s trails at Parker River, Maudslay and elsewhere where I can make a type of daily pilgrimage to feed my body, mind and soul with the healing, loving nature of the Mother.

And so… the Mid-Life Crisis Adventure continues…

(Photo: Hellcat Swamp Trail ~ c. Pamela J. Leavey 2012)

Reflections: On Injurious Falls

I’ve found it difficult to write over the past few days, my head has been fogged in by a loss for words. It’s been 9 1/2 weeks since I fell in my driveway and ended up with a Lisfranc sprain in my right foot. Finally nearing the end of my initial treatment for the injury, first being in a hard cast for 6 1/2 and then an air cast for 4 1/2 weeks, I head back to the ortho on the 26th and I am hoping he OKs me to start physical therapy.

It’s been a long tough haul… Stuck at home, alone, day after day, unable to drive, dependent on my daughter and some friends to first bring me supplies and then start to get me out of the house occasionally.

My right foot was completely atrophied when the hard cast came off. Much to my chagrin, I did not realize how badly atrophied it was until I slipped out of my air cast and prepared to step in a nice Lavendar scented hot bath. What was I thinking? How am I going to get into this bath tub with no strength in my foot and leg… and worse, how the hell will I get out?

Strength be damned, I was getting in that tub… I grabbed hold of the shower height bar and slid down into the tub. Once in I knew getting out was not going to be easy… So I relaxed into the hot water and gave thanks to have the cast off my foot at last. With visions of having to yell upstairs to my neighbors to help me get out of the tub, I somehow managed to pull myself out and didn’t try that stunt again for a few weeks.

A Lisfranc sprain isn’t a swift healer like some ankle sprains can be. It’s not even a very common injury, 1 in 55,000 a year get a Lisfranc injury… Just my luck. I’d have rather won the lotto, but I don’t gamble. Or do I?

About 2 months before my fall, I gambled. I took a huge leap of fate and trusted the Goddess to guide me as I began to date someone I met online. He was persistent and seemed oh too good to be true and he swept me, the storied Ice Princess off her feet. And that was the beginning of another injurious fall.

First, I fell head over heals for this knight in shining armor who was promising me the world, and then with in a few short weeks, I fell from grace it appeared, as I managed to land myself spread upon my driveway with scrapes, bruises and sprains.

After the fall, the phone calls started to dwindle. There were no more dates, the promises started to fade. The weeks not seeing him stretched into a couple of months and there I dangled like my injured foot, with a heart crushed by the promise of love.

Sometimes life sends us some very difficult lessons and sometimes they come heaped together like a big bowl of stewed troubles. It wasn’t enough I should fall on the ground and sprain my foot… Hell no… I needed to have my heart stomped on too.

My faith was sorely tested in the first weeks of my injuries as I realized that that which I thought I had found was slipping away, as I sat stuck at home alone, unable to drive… trapped like a prisoner in my pain. Loss of freedom, loss of love, wrapped together like the vines of a wicked bramble bush waiting to ensnare.

Ah, but even after injurious falls, life does go on. My strength is finally coming back in the physical sense from my injuries and I drove today for the first time in 9 1/2 weeks. It was liberating…

My heart, I fear will be weary to trust again, for it took so much for me to take that leap. Promises can quickly turn into broken promises. Some are better than others at keeping them. And the ones that can’t keep them, well they really show their trues colors when they bail on someone in need.

I’m still working on figuring out the lessons and hatching ideas of what’s next in my life… Reflecting on what was… Looking forward to brighter days…

(Photo: Berries & Brambles ~ c. Pamela J. Leavey 2012)

On The River

Having your right foot in a cast is truly a pain in the a**. I’m not sure what is most annoying about it all, but not being able to drive is a big one. It’s tough being stuck in house and dependent on family and friends for supplies, etc…

I also sorely miss my hiking at Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, Maudsley State Park and along Point Shore in Amesbury. Before I started hiking a few weeks ago, a good drive along the river to Plum Island always served to clear my head.

Thankfully, my hiking partner came by to rescue me on Monday and we took a wonderful drive along the Merrimack River, from Amesbury, through Merrimack and Rock’s Village and then over the Rock’s Village Bridge and back along River Road in West Newbury (my early childhood stomping grounds).

We were looking for Bald Eagles which have been here in smaller numbers this season. The Bald Eagle proved to be elusive on Monday, but we treated to a sighting of 4 – 6 Eastern Bluebirds… Yes, that’s right, the Blue Bird Of Happiness.

Sadly, Continue reading

On The Parker River Path

A few weeks ago I joined the ranks of the unemployed and took to walking 3 – 5 days a week with a dear friend, to clear my head and get grounded. There’s nothing better for freeing your mind than a brisk walk in the cool winter air.

Most of my walks were spent exploring the many trails and pathways at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge. The Hellcat Swamps trails have become a favorite, from the observation tower on the Parker River side to the 50 foot dune on the ocean side.

My hikes abruptly stopped on January 8, after a fall in my driveway left me with abrasions, bruises and a badly sprained foot. The following day I ended up with a cast on my right foot which needless to say has kept me from the hikes and trails. The cast is scheduled to come off on January 23 and I am hoping to get the okay from the doctor to start hiking again.

The photo above is from the observation deck atop the 50 foot dune mentioned above. Continue reading