"Well," I said, looking down at Socks. "It's just us for a month."
Socks sighed, but wagged his tail sweetly. He's a gentleman dog, doesn't like hurting my feelings. I heard his Ernest Borgnine voice in my head.
"No worries, sugar foot. We'll be just dandy."
I pet his head with my good hand and then we walked into the house together. I'd let him ride with me to take Bing to the airport. Liv and her Father left yesterday. Bing is off to New Orleans, followed by San Diego, followed by Washington, D.C. A month of presenting at Apple seminars. Liv and her Father off to North Carolina to a dig in the Appalachians.
Bing comes home on August 11, the day before she heads back to school. Liv comes back August 7th, a week before her school starts back up...just in time to go school shopping. It is gonna be a really long month. In our original plans, I was to meet Bing in New Orleans to spend a week with her relatives mid July, but my doctor nipped that in the bud. Blood work bad. No traveling.
I was upset at first, but then...later...relieved. I'm just not up for travel. I know this in my heart. I'm barely up for work and then coming home to collapse with a book for an hour before bed. Maybe some harmless television.
The last few days before everyone left were the hardest. Bing was watching me like a hawk, considering skipping New Orleans and staying two weeks with me before heading off to San Diego.
Dudes, you should have seen me. Meryl Streep couldn't have done better. I had no idea that I possessed such great acting chops. Somebody hand me an Oscar.
Because, just between you and me the fence post? I feel like shit. My energy is level is so down from this RA attack that I can barely keep myself fed and dressed. One lone finger is refusing to heal. The middle one on my right hand. It is wretched to look at, swollen sausage finger. My rheumatologist referred me to a hand surgeon last week. I went by myself, not telling anyone. The prognosis is a little dire. Trying one more round of super antibiotics which are very hard on my RA drugs and type 1 diabetes. If these don't work, looking at either joint replacement or.....amputation. The damn thing just will not heal. I'm depressed. Furious at my body. Pleading with it every night: Why must you attack yourself? Heal already!
For those of you who have RA or know someone who does, you know how frustrating this is. The problem being that your own body attacks itself. I once went to a psychic long ago who looked me gently in the eye and said, "Why do you punish yourself so? You have nothing to blame yourself for!" I was speechless. Did she really believe that I was somehow punishing myself? And for what exactly? I'm still not sure if she was incredibly intuitive or full of shit.
I am pretty good at keeping things from Liv, but the older she gets, the wilier she is. And I can't exactly hide a finger that looks like it belongs on a cartoon character. I keep it wrapped in gauze at work, but need to let it breathe at home, so she sees it, sees me wincing when I accidentally graze it across anything. I just shrug and act like it's no big deal. Like it isn't killing me that Bing and I haven't been able to sleep in the same bed for 3 weeks because if she brushes against my hand in the middle of the night, I come awake fast and hard and in agony. The pain is truly terrific. And not good terrific.
Bing gets it, but I've minimized the fact that along with this pain, my fatigue is almost too much for me. I've managed to get up and go to work, but sometimes I have to fight to stay awake during dinner and I'm just so very tired. I feel like it's a double whammy, fighting anemia, fighting this never ending RA attack. I am now very relieved that I don't have to worry about what the cabin pressure in an airplane would do to my finger.
I'm glad to be home, glad not to feel so on stage. Because Bing came THIS close to not leaving. And I don't think I could stand it if she stayed home to be my caregiver. I'm not there yet. I fucking refuse to be there yet.
So, it's just me and the dog. And those antibiotics that I am keeping my fingers crossed do NOT mess with my diabetes because then I will have to go off of them. And then? Well, I'd kind of like to keep my middle finger on my right hand. It's served me well in the past.
You have no idea how much that one little finger does in a day until you can no longer use it.
I tell myself that this is a blip on the radar. That Socks and I will have a great quiet time. He will miss his morning runs with Bing, will have to settle for a run in the back yard before I head off to work. I've swore to him that I will take him on long, long walks after work every evening. He looks at me, skeptical.
"Well, I'll TRY!" I tell him. He nods, understands. As I said, he is such a gentleman, If we only make it once around the block, he'll be sweet. He will.
And we both love our nights outside in the Adirondack chair together. If it doesn't rain. Because this has been our monsoon Summer. It has rained so much that the ground is saturated. I haven't had to manually water my garden once. Ah. My poor garden. It is so waterlogged and weedy. I try to keep up with it, but often fatigue gets me. So, my garden is bedraggled looking. Root rot is trying to set in. I keep hoping for some long sunny days. And for once in my life, I'm grateful to be left handed. I can still pull those weeds with my good hand.
So, life hasn't been horrid. It's just been....very uncomfortable. Sorry to have neglected all of you. I miss your blogs but admit that more than once, I've sat down to read them and dozed off. Not that you aren't all scintillating and all that. I'm just a cruddy reader lately. Forgive me?
I'll head back in a few days and let you know how the wind is blowing. In the meantime, how about you leave me a comment and tell me how you are faring?
I miss you....