Monday, June 17, 2013

The results are in

And it appears that taking on the mucking of Ben’s daily output hasn’t harmed my recovery; indeed, one might consider it a new phase of physical therapy, advancing me beyond mere walking. I haven’t felt much discomfort while doing it, nor subsequently, nor stiffened up afterwards when immobile for long stretches; if anything, I’m doing better post-mucking today than the first day, Saturday. It’s still impossible for me to climb the ladder to the hayloft or haul hay bales about, but I’m getting help with that till it’s back within my power. I’ve been taking the cane along on the mucking runs, to help on the uphill push of the loaded (not TOO loaded, mind you) cart, but leaving it hanging on the fence during the manure-forking process. Today I didn’t even need the cane for the uphill.

Ah, the cane. I’d like to ditch it entirely, but it’s not quite time yet. I hardly use it at all at home, indeed have reached the “Now, where did I leave that thing?” point in our relationship, but it still feels safer to use it to steady me when I get up after sitting for a while, at least for the first couple of steps; to help haul my carcass up the stairs; to offer support on my daily walks. I’ve tried parking it on my shoulder when I’m out walking, yesterday and today, and seeing how far I could get before needing it. The answer has varied but, well, let’s just say I’m not going to be putting in any canefree miles just yet.

Still and all, things are progressing nicely, and it’s good to be back to taking care of Ben again. He seems happy to have my attention and is diligent about leaving lots of material for my physical therapy sessions at the farm.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Moving onward and upward

Big plans for the weekend: I'm going to see if I can take over Ben's care. Two days ago I mucked out the run-in AND scrubbed and refilled the bathtub that waters Ben and his two buddies, hauling the hose there and reeling it back, and doing all this after having walked a mile and a quarter before driving over there; then I went grocery shopping and hauled home several bags of cat litter and canned food, among other things. No pain or stiffness as the day went on, and I woke up the next day feeling fine.

So I'll be taking over from Renee, who's done the Benster-care for the last few months, over the weekend and on Monday, and if three days of barn chores doesn't lay me low, I'll take over for good -- no doubt needing someone else at first to throw down hay from the loft for me, for however long it takes to build back up to being able to climb/descend ladders and pick up hay bales. But that, too, will come.

I’ll be careful, I’ll listen to my body, and if it says “That’s not a good idea, ya know,” I’ll back off. But I do feel it’s time to at least try.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Whadda revoltin development

So we finally get perfect walking weather after that ambition-sapping stretch of heat wave, and I can finally get back to strength-building, walking walking walking, pushing past the personal best (two miles!) I’d achieved just a couple of days before the hot humid horrors descended.

Not so fast, there, podner.

I’m sick – started a sore throat last night, woke up every hour or two to be reminded of it, and awoke this morning to confirm that, yes, indeed, I do have a sore throat, the soreness now creeping into the ears; my head is getting stuffy, and overall I feel crappy – mild enough that I can still sit quietly and proofread but crappy enough that going out for a two-mile, or even a one-mile, or even the half-mile end-of-my-street-and-back walk is probably not going to happen. Well, I’ll try the end-of-street walk after I’ve had my coffee.

And I’d been doing so well! Not only the walking, but getting around the house without needing the cane most of the time, even on the stairs; finding my range of motion in that leg increasing; being able to lift more, with greater ease – heck, yesterday I even mucked Ben’s run-in. Granted, there were probably no more than a half-dozen dump piles (a minuscule output for the big bay doofus), I was using a Smart Cart, easier to maneuver than a wheelbarrow (especially with one hand while the other pegs along with a cane), and by the time I’d dumped it and put the cart back in the barn I was done for the day on exerting myself – but still! I’d planned to muck again today, but unless I start feeling better (maybe the coffee will help) that’s not going to happen.

Grumble grumble grumble.