Showing posts from February, 2021

Pain: Embrace the Suck (Part 3)

  Embrace the Suck It’s mid-October, I am hiking my last trail. I have set a goal: 20 trails in 2020 -- it was my middle finger extension to the pandemic -- and it was my last hike. Not because it was #20, not because Ice Lake Trail was closed a few days later due to idiot-car-campers walking away from a campfire (burning 600 acres and countless animals' winter nests); not because the season would soon transition to snowshoeing (thankfully, the fire was extinguished by an early snowstorm); but, it was my last hike because it was the final straw to my own back.  The hike was similar to most hikes in Colorado -- to climb a mountain you must go up. Doesn’t matter if it’s hiking, snowshoeing, or backcountry skiing: to get to the top, to experience the glory, to relish the downhill -- you must embrace the suck. Isn’t that why people pay the big bucks on lift tickets, ATVs and snorkled-monster-tire-bullbar-slider-4X4s? So they don’t have to embrace the suck. Most trails in the San Juan M

Pain: Saturday Night ER (Part 2)

     There is a woman, frayed, agitated, hunched. She braces herself on the hospital exam table, willing her arms to grow longer, holding her up, lengthening to decompress her spine;  her head tilts to one side, her eyes dart around the emergency room with imploring  shadows for pupils. She is neatly kept - but only by a thread. The woman has a grown-out  dye-job, it’s been months since her last touch-up, her grey hair stripes her scalp. Seated  near, in a blue-speckled, molded chair, playing with her teddy-bear is a little girl in pink  pajamas, her elastic pull-ups peek over her waistband, and a disheveled strand of hair  keeps falling-out from behind her ear. It’s Saturday night.  “You need to understand, my granddaughter accidentally poured my pain meds into the toilet to watch it swirl and go ‘bye-bye’.” “I’m sorry ma’am, I can’t refill your hydrocodone. Your record indicates you are not due for a refill for another two weeks, you need to wait until Monday and speak with your

Pain: Suck it up, Sunshine (Part 1)

  Pain is lonely, pain is unique, pain chokes your emotions like the penny sized pill you take to control your pain.  No one knows your pain.  No one feels your pain.  Suck it up, your pain is a guilty pleasure compared to others.  Someone else feels worse than you. Others are plegic, viral, diseased, dying.  But yet, you hurt,  you cry,  you hobble and humble. Don’t feel sorry for yourself -- suck it up, sunshine.  Am I blessed for feeling pain? Gaining empathy? Anointed by a broken spirit?  My curtains are drawn, my heating pad keeps me company. My bag of ice numbs me. If only I had hope -- if only I can see the sun shine again, then maybe I can redeem myself -- care for others as I wish to be cared for.  At least, I don’t have… Cancer, or worse,  a child with cancer… Deal with it! It could be worse -- count your blessings.  But, it hurts. The pain hurts and I want so badly to allow myself to feel my pain without counting my blessings. It really fucking hurts. I want to wallow.  I cu