Sunday Column (192)

Actually an extraordinary week that lies behind me.

In the last few weeks my upper back flared up again. Spasm, ongoing pain etc. so I went back to the chiropractor and deep tissue massage which helped loosen it, however the pain is still there and I am back on ibuprofen 🙁

20121102-075822.jpg Still, I felt like running on Monday. In the night of Monday I pulled a muscle in my lower back lifting R out of his cot. Again. I haven’t had any problems for the past year but it came back. I feel like I am falling apart, pain, limited movement. That was then paired with a very unsatisfying week at work. I don’t get many of those but this week was just not right. Luckily it passed very quickly.

Weeks like these are very tiring. In particular if you don’t sleep either. The boys are ill, the MIL is around, you are out of your routine. Having said that, my MIL gave us lots of space and my wife a well deserved daily lie in. And, the diner we had last Sunday was fantastic. We got live folk music, good food and a few drinks. Just a shame it was a Sunday.

Every time I let myself down a bit thinking what is happening with my body, my ambitions, the downward spiral opens up widely. You see the hurricane in the US and you think you ain’t that bad off. You are alive and breathing. You get on with it. You know what I mean. You are a wonder in yourself. You might not remember how weak and small you were, naked, helpless in your mother’s arms. We came a long way. We are breathing. I can feel my heart beating. I am going to be ok.

The downward spiral then closes. The sun comes up and you give yourself a big kick up the bum. There were positive things this week too. Some really good chats with friends. I found out one got engaged, so another wedding to look forward to. Another just made a big decision re his future too.

And I think after my wife had 27 folk, 18 of which were kids, around for a hallowe’en party, we can consciously make the decision that two kids are enough. I get asked this question weekly. We would love a bigger family but we would have to start all over again. My wife had some trouble with the second pregnancy, so we don’t want to push our luck. Yes it would be nice to have another bundle of joy. But the sleepless nights, dirty nappies, costs etc. I don’t think we should or will for that matter. Life is just getting a bit better and easier again.

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To change the topic a bit. The poppy appeal kicked off big time this week. For my German friends these are the red poppies everyone is wearing on their jackets and we remove them on Remembrance day. We pay around a pound for a poppy, often more, we donate it for the heroes that gave their life in the wars. For us. For peace. For freedom. For Britain and the world. A nice gesture. We are giving things back to the ones that gave for us. For generations. Growing up in Germany people didn’t show much appreciation to their military. I appreciate countries that do. In America as far as I understand it a soldier in uniform who eats in a restaurant never pays his bill. Someone would pick it up for him.

Appreciating where you coming from and what you have. How often does a broken back let you down, the pain in your leg, the ever annoying struggle to sort the most basic things? The imperfection of others.

Stop a minute. I got breakfast bought this week. I bought a few drinks. I showed appreciation, I was shown appreciation. Life gives you back what you give. Full circle. Live!

And on Sunday the whole family went to fireworks and bonfire. I am alive. I am breathing. My family loves me. I am going to be ok.

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Have a fantastic week and watch after yourself.

Volker