I had my… seventh physiotherapy appointment this afternoon, I have only managed to attend two so far and this time it was the physiotherapist who phoned in sick. Fantastic! I fear this whole experiment is doomed; the particular guy I was seeing was only on a six-week secondment to Whitby. Bugger.
And today it hurts a lot. I am going to have to make another one of those trips to the doctor where I try to ask for a higher dose of painkiller without sounding like a wimp. Added to what I hope is only an increased tolerance to the medicine, my lymph-nodes have been up, my throat sore and my temperature all over the place for over week now and it’s getting worse. This is a dangerous time of year for me, much as I love the autumn. Here is a lovely picture taken in the Lake District last autumn by my genius yet ginger brother-in-law Adrian Taylor. I was there and it was that lovely.
I hate the up and down nature of my illness – it is the worst element. It makes it very difficult not to be anxious about my health because if I relapse now it could mean a crappy week or a crappy month or it could be Christmas before I’m back to where I am now. Of course, I can’t do much about it anyway so I really shouldn’t worry, but the uncertainty of the situation is intrinsically stressful. I would have to be in denial not to be just a little bit nervous.
Still I have been reading about Buddhism and disability, in particular the difference between pain and suffering. Pain is a physiological event, a combination of electrical and chemical activity. Pain only becomes suffering, the theory goes, when the mind thinks that it shouldn’t be happening, when the mind resists what is a natural and inevitable part of our experience. I am too tired to discuss why this might be a useful concept, but I think it might.
I owe a great number of letters and e-mails so please bear with me. Thanks to everyone who voted in my poll – wowza - I hope to be modelling the results for you at the end of the week.