Seasonal Damage

Injuries. (Sigh) Part of the practice. I’ve been quiet because my first significant tennis injury knocked me down. It was a double blow. I suffered a significant injury of the heart at work and carried my hurt/anger/fear/frustration onto the tennis court. Nothing happened, at least in terms of the tennis. I simply overdid it. Pushed past a limit. Got hurt. Of course; completely my fault, which is the depressing part. I wasn’t competing. I was simply being an ass and handling my emotional issues poorly.  Whammo. My body clapped back. Hey asshole, stop taking it out on me.

And then I was really sorry. Sorry for the stupid thing I did at work. Sorry my apology made me vulnerable to a hurtful comment rather than making the amends I intended. Sorry for the stupid way I tried to cope on the tennis court. Sorry I hurt myself like a brute when I know better. Sorry the whole damn mess could have easily been prevented. Sorry sad sack of sullen remorse completely at fault on all counts.

I couldn’t run (or play any tennis at all) but as is always the case, I could still practice yoga. So I took to the mat in earnest until I could walk. Always helps. Always shifts the mind from ranting about the situation to studying the situation, which eases the depression from deep black to light grey until I can shake it off completely. (I’m using the word depression as a casual descriptive term here, not to be confused with serious clinical depression.) After I stop thrashing about it, the lesson learned points toward reform. Slowly the body heals. I gain wisdom. This is part of the practice.

While I’ve been mulling, musing, and mending I made a bunch of pretty pictures. I also decided to renew my old former relationship with my old former trainer. A formal apology is nice and all but middle-aged bodies of lifelong athletes have seen decades of overuse injuries. Year after year of the injury/heal/train/compete/injury cycle has a cumulative effect. In middle age it’s easier to get injured (even when not competing), injuries take longer to heal, some never heal completely and become chronic over time. My heart and brain want to perform like I did when I was 25. My body wants respect for the years she has put in since I was 25. I love her. I want her to have what she needs.

So it’s back to the gym. But rather than blabber on about weight training and periodization and thresholds and specificity of training and all the stuff you can absorb on eleventy-dozen fitness blogs across the web, I’ll just show you the pretty pictures I made while I was moping around like the aforementioned sad sack.

Kitty pausing in last shaft of sunlight in middle of dining table.
Moody ornament on tree now blocking said window
where last shafts of sunlight used to fall on middle of dining table.
The only toppers upon holiday trees which make sense to me anymore.
Not that they don’t also make sense elsewhere in/on the tree as well.
But then again, who says everything has to make sense?

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More nonsensical items I’m keeping out of a landfill (for now).

My favorite holiday tradition is to NEVER, EVER pay for holiday decorations when so many are thrown away year after year. I’ve been the recipient of FOUR perfectly functional artificial trees in the last dozen years, because folks think they need to upgrade something they only use once a year. Madness. I’ve been given — completely free — boxes upon boxes upon bags of ornaments and lights people no longer want anymore. Good ornaments, pretty ornaments, as you can see here, ranging from cheap to expensive. Wasteful madness. I can’t remember the last time I bought an ornament for myself.

I tell you truthfully, my friends, every time someone wants me to admire their latest themed tree I may say something polite, but internally I’m fuming over all the stuff they will throw away because it didn’t suit this year’s theme. I’ve become a holiday foster mother for these castoffs. I regift them, rehome them, rehab and repurpose them, or adopt them and keep them until they reach the end of their natural lives. And when I say natural lives, I mean utterly unusable. Behold the broken and damaged ornaments prominently displayed on the tree as we speak:

No filter. This giant plastic greenie was probably melted by a hot bulb. Who hasn’t been dented by lingering too close to danger?
No filter. This reddie is a vintage beauty; scratched, bubbled, cracked, and hazy with age. I want to be this ornament’s friend.
No filter. This swirlie girlie is missing pieces of herself and yet holds together. The metaphor is just too beautiful to discard, folks.

So I guess this is my perennial theme; celebrating injuries of all kinds. Let’s be damaged together this season. All seasons. It sure beats the alternative.

— Mercy

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