Saturday, January 21, 2012

Stripped


My life has been stripped of a few things in recent days. See all the red berries on the cotoneaster in my header photo up there? The migrating flocks of cedar waxwings, who made their first appearance here on December 16, have stripped them for sustenance on their winter voyage to Mexico. I rejoice in the fact that my little piece of paradise helped fuel their epic flight from the northern climes to their hiatus in the south.

Then I received a splendid tool last week from my physical therapist, who has made it his mission to strip my neck of the agony that plagues me. He gave me a TENS unit, designed to combat pain with electrical stimulation of the nerve pathways that conduct messages of misery to my brain. I attach electrodes to my neck and direct the palm-sized unit to zap the neural fibers in the musculature with a level of intensity that I control. It works! I crank that baby up to the echelon of warfare and rejoice as it slams shut the gateways to pain.

It is empowering to live in the solution rather than mucking about in the problem. I’m so jazzed that I’ve dived into the brown lifeless stuff in the garden. Hacking away at the evidence of death is a joy too, because visions of crispy brown crap drags at my sense of hope. Tearing it away fuels little jolts of delight as I uncover tiny shoots of the hardy harbingers of spring. Hyacinths and tulips push through the hard, droughty soil in their enduring drive to bloom.

Next comes the Zen of pruning frost-ravaged roses. I have 13 of those, looking like shit in the front yard, yelling “Life has ceased!” every single day since the hard frost hit. I hollered back at five of them yesterday with a litany of “Prepare for spring!” I was a rose-pruning ninja, not a Zen master, because I only had an hour and was impatient to dive into solutions again. Having made the crucial beginning, I will go more slowly today and savor the art.

It’s lovely to be stripped of things that then fuel flight.

Hope, personified in the eye of growth on a winter rosebush.

8 comments:

RNSANE said...

Oh, Chris, what a wonderful post. It sounds like you are hastening the advent of Spring with all your ministrations.

Starting week 7 in India on Monday night....finally, under the weather for 96 hours, with Deli Belly. So far, both "chemist" and village doctor,and their meds, haven't cured it. Yikes.

Brian Miller said...

there is def some fine spiritual aspects to putting your hand to creation...

The Bug said...

Mike has a TENS unit for his back & he LOVES it - it has really helped with his nerve pain.

I probably won't tackle our front bed full of dead mums until spring. I'm such a cold weather wimp :)

Kristin H. said...

Ah, good stuff!! I need to do the same with my yard. However, I am allowing the Ginormous Cow Puppy to have his way with it and he seems to be digging it up just fine ;-)

the walking man said...

Yep you have about the same unit outside you as I have implanted into my ass for the same reason...unfortunately two of the internal wires that run bottom to top have moved and that means another slice and dice...fortunately all of my poetry and writing, every single bit of it is an after affect of the anesthesia. hey that is as good an excuse as any wh?

Birdie said...

yay you sound cheerful Chris! happy that the tool is helping you to get rid of the pain, your own body is in a state of spring :-) the picture is beautiful, all of them :-)

ScottF said...

beautiful post Chris, I love how you write and express yourself :-)

My dad has a TENS for his cyatic nerve issues... He has had such a tough time with this. I hope the TENS provides some relief, glad to hear its working for you my friend!

Syd said...

The buds are already out here. And the bulbs are coming up. It will be spring soon!

Albert Einstein Quotes