So, How Many Hats Do You Wear?

My photo
Pensacola, Florida, United States
Husband. *Dog Dad.* Instructional Systems Specialist. Runner. (Swim-challenged) Triathlete (on hiatus). USATF LDR Surveyor. USAT (Elite Rules) CRO/2, NTO/1. RRCA Rep., FL (North). Observer Of The Human Condition.

Monday, January 31, 2011

I'm Bad Off...You've Had Worse

"When one has much to put into them, a day has a hundred pockets." - Friedrich Nietzsche, philosopher (1844-1900)

This last week, for want of a better term, was one of transition and change.

Transition and change. Close friends and loved ones can tell you I transition slowly (especially during triathlons!) and despise change. Like my dog, I enjoy getting up at a fixed time in the morning; would be happy eating the same breakfast and (as long as they were clean) would wear the exact same outfit day in and day out. All right, perhaps not the exact same outfit. But deciding "what to wear," "what to do," and, in some cases "what to be" isn't high on my list of things on which I want to fixate. The idea of suddenly doing - or not doing - something which breaks my daily or weekly routine can put me into a thirty-minute tail-spin.

But this time, it's a little more painful. I already talked about the achilles injury and how it put the kibosh on Rock n' Roll/Mardi Gras. The good news is my uneducated diagnosis was more-or-less confirmed by a physical therapist/friend of mine. The bad news had more to do with an emotional or existential state, that "filling a niche in the world" kind of stuff.

I'm not going into the details. What hurt the most didn't make me want to cry or drink to excess; two common coping mechanisms which crossed my mind for all of about thirty seconds. I didn't have the luxury of going immediately into "coping" mode; it would have to wait until after that evening's track workout. My wife took a few minutes to have a good cry, though.

After the track workout she and I sat down over dinner and a couple of beers and talked. We talked over dinner and a couple of beers the next night, too. After about ninety dollars worth of food and beer - much cheaper than a psychologist - I did not have the will or the need to talk any more about the changes. There's not much I can do about it now except smile, clean out a few file folders and answer the infrequent question that comes my way.

The nice thing is this: I've been able to put it into perspective. I'm about three hundred pages into Chris Rose's book, "1 Dead In Attic." I figure if he and his family, and all those people whose lives were turned completely upside-down, inside-out, and wrung through the wringer by Hurricane Katrina can survive, then I'd be a little baby (I was going to use a stronger word) if I couldn't suck it up and drive on.

So, drive on I have. And I've been able to laugh a little after a day or two. Lose that sense of humor - or your main rotor, as my old friend John Steel used to say - and it can lead to very bad things.

And it's funny how nature not only abhors a vacuum, she gently nudges something to fill in the gap. While it doesn't fill it completely - it's a David Letterman front tooth kind of gap - it will serve the purpose of keeping the "pocket walls" separate for now.

So, if you think you have it bad, look around. There's probably someone who has it worse. As long as you have your sense of humor and your main rotor, everything is going to be all right.

No comments: