Thursday, May 3, 2007

bad back

Today I'm holed up in my office, because it hurts to move. I did something nasty to my back (doctor says "muscle spasms") at the confirmation retreat (something about "they're 15 -- you're 50". I didn't feel fifty, but today I feel like I'm about 80. As I was getting ready to head out the door this morning, the dog brought me a couple of her toys, as if to say, "Why don't you just stay home and play with me?"

A tylenol with codeine is sitting on my desk. Should I take it? Or not? Will it help? I took a really strong pain killer and muscle relaxant last night, and slept better, but it still hurt whenever I moved.

So today is "office day". I can't deal with going to visit people and limping up to their rooms, bent over. I should have a cane. I'm going to organize and make phone calls and think a lot. Someone once said that being a pastor is one of the few jobs where you get paid to read and to think. So I'll read and think... and call some people... oh, and maybe clean my office... organize the piles, throw out whatever has an ancient date on it.

I'm thinking "I'm not used to this." I've never been that athletic, but I've always been pretty healthy. So, I'm not used to not being able to do the dishes, or walk the dog, or lift anything. Maybe, as well, I haven't been very patient with people who can't just get up and do whatever they want, whenever they want to. Maybe this is what it's like for the older people who tell me, "I just don't feel good." They often aren't specific about their ailments -- they just say, "I don't feel good."

Yesterday before I went to the doctor, I got lots of good advice from the older people who go to our Matins service every Wednesday. One of them told me, "The doctor will say, 'it's the effects of aging.'"

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