Thursday, June 2, 2011

Thanking in the throbbing

Seeing clearly is a challenge this morning. I'm trying not to think of the pain pinching down from the base of my head to my left shoulder, the way I can only move my head about two inches each direction before the bulging knot in my muscles throbs, shoots a stabbing pain up my neck. Trying not to think of how it's much too early in the day to call for a massage appointment, how I called one number and it was the lady's personal cell phone and I woke her up and she sounded annoyed. Trying not to think of how I just ate the last decent meal I'll have for several days, how I'll probably be sucking down applesauce and pureed foods by this evening, looped out on painkillers after having all four of my wisdom teeth out this afternoon.

It's a struggle, turning my thoughts toward grace. See through to the joy, open my eyes to the thanks when all I feel is the throbbing. And I think of all the people that live with chronic pain, far worse than this, and I must try.

So I think of my mom. How happy she is she's my designated nurse. It's a blast from the past for both of us, but even thirty-year old kids still need a mom to take care of them from time to time, and she's an enthusiastic volunteer. I think of how she massaged down my neck and shoulder last night with my head in her lap for nearly an hour. And I give thanks for her.

I'm thinking of the stack of books I have to read, including Mrs. Piggle Wiggle and Pippi Longstocking, One thousand gifts, and Rooms (a suspense novel from a talented author I met at my writer's conference). And I give thanks for library books and memory-inducing children's literature and new authors and time to read, even if drugged up.

I'm thinking of my good friend, Naphtali, who offered to come on her day off on Friday to spend time with me. And I give thanks for her faithful friendship.

I'm thinking of sick pay and how fortunate I am to have it, and I give thanks.

I'm thinking of dental insurance, how I can afford all this because I have it, and I give thanks.

I'm thinking of vicodin and how I'll have some by this afternoon, and if my neck and shoulders are still throbbing, it will take care of them as well as my jaw. And I give thanks.

I'm thinking how the throbbing slowly fades away, into the background, as grace emerges.

And I give thanks.

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