Wednesday, May 23, 2012

My World Has Gotten Small

Mr. Spike, miniature poodle, hoodie up.

(sprinkled throughout this post are some of the photos I took today, click to enlarge them)

I really haven't blogged in a while.

I keep trying to start again, but life keeps intervening and I slack off and then stop.

I loved blogging and keeping up with other's blogs, It's all done at the perfect pace for me.  Or at least the me of a few years ago.

Now even the blogger's pace is too fast for me to keep up.

Most of my life I have had a very high pain tolerance.  I could shake off mashing a finger, flat-out ignore stubbing a toe, calmly clean and bandage a cut, and put salve on a burn and go back to cooking or whatever.

So lately I've been really trying to fight harder to deal with my back pain like I do with a smashed finger, but it's much harder to just ignore and keep moving with the back pain.

There are levels of pain that can absolutely shut a person down, period.  Trying to ignore massive pain is like trying to tell a person in deep depression to "just snap out of it."  Those words are less than useless to a depressed person, likewise, even the most concentrated effort of will is not enough to override certain pain levels.

Arm out window paparazzi style shot.
I hope you never, ever, ever feel this kind of physical pain.

The past few years, my back pain had gotten to the point that it pretty much ruined my life in many ways.

A life-long love of photography and the simple joy of going to places and taking long, meandering walks with my camera came to a screeching halt.

Daily I count my blessing, and make no mistake, I am blessed with a great wife, kids, house, pets, family, etc., but daily chronic pain makes the entire experience of living like trying to do intricate, tedious work with a police siren in the room.

I can't sit at the computer to work in Photoshop Elements very long, and that's just as fun to me as taking the photos in the first place.  I was BORN to be a digital photographer, and the pain just "crimps my style" in almost every aspect of life.  All those years with print and slide film and darkroom work were fun, but I love the digital photography of today so much more.

I have a Facebook account, but don't find that very fun.  It's a blessing to keep up with long-lost friends from high school, or old work-mates that I hadn't seen in many years, but something about it doesn't get me excited.  Working on Facebook seems more like a chore than fun.  Mainly because the interface is so unintuitive to me that just adding photos to a particular photo album takes me long enough to want to just give up.

Mercury 7 Astronaut Memorial, Titusville, Florida
 Today, I had to get ready and Number Two Daughter took me to an appointment in Titusville, about a 40 minute drive from home.

Since I was up and out and heading to a place I don't go often, I took my camera.

After taking care of business, we went to Space View Park in Titusville, on the Indian River Lagoon, on the mainland directly across from Kennedy Space Center.

You can see the huge Vehicle Assembly Building across the waterway on the beachside island.
Gemini Astronaut Memorial. See NASA Vehicle Assembly. Building in distance (right side)?
At this park, which is in several sections, are monuments to the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo space programs and the astronauts and workers that were involved.  The monument to the Space Shuttle program is presently under construction.

Apollo Astronaut Memorial. Earth and Moon represented on the A's cross.

The park is so spread out that, for me, it was a very hard but incredibly enjoyable time of taking photo and walking with my daughter.  By the end though, I kept noticing that I was walking stooped over like an elderly man.

It was fun, but it hurt.

That pretty much sums up my life right now.  I'm blessed and thank God for all my blessings daily, but to do a simple thing like get out and slowly walk around for an hour or so leaves me pleased but hurting.

I guess all I can do is get up tomorrow, and if the pain is just low enough, try my best to do something else that I want to do.

My world and my thoughts are much smaller than they used to be.


Carina said...

I'm so sorry that you're still struggling with chronic pain, JAM. I'm glad you were able to put a few pictures up, though. It was good to see you back in the networld for a brief moment.

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