Sunday, October 10, 2010

Stretching out in Autumn

My sorrow, when she's here with me, thinks these dark days of autumn rain are beautiful as days can be; she loves the bare, the withered tree; she walks the sodden pasture lane.
                                                                                         Robert Frost 

The time has come to write again.  It is daunting.  Some mental muscle stretches with resistance.  The resistance triggers old tapes that play a tiresome haunt: who is suppose to write in the family and who should not do so.  A defense begins to mount ~ this is a blog after all not a vetted scientific publication or some such thing.  Then it occurs in some dim recess of my mind that most of my life 'projects' begin in Autumn.  The Fall has a unique killing beauty that draws one's attention.  "Resistance is futile."

"Autumn is a second Spring where every leaf is just a flower"
~ Albert Camus

Okay, I'm holding on to that thought...the 'second Spring'.  Summer  is a blur.  One that was filled with pain, surgery and recovery.  Time to move on with life.  Time to observe that some trees are bare here and other tenaciously hold their leafs.  Certainly all the trees in my yard, those frisky wooden devils, (six in count) are holding on to their leafs.  The household has a gardening service but they "don't do leafs".   I can see myself, the electric leaf blower and trusty rake in the crisp and RAINY weather that is November...raking leafs on a weekend that was meant for an adventure.    Makes me wish my dogs had apposable thumbs so they could be conscripted into yard service.   Surely a smart Lab could learn to rake?   When my internal whine gets too loud, as it is now, I remember to ask 'would you rather rake leafs or be frantically stacking wood against the on-coming New England winter'.  Dang, I have to vote for raking leafs in the Northwest.  The pity party is forced to  close.

"But I remember more dearly Autumn afternoons in bottoms that lay intensely silent under old great trees."           ~ C.S. Lewis

Lying  'under old great trees' would have happened in my much younger years.  Some where between Utah and New England.  The past is the past and I prefer to not wander there often.  Today the past whispers in my ear...asking for a visit.  I remember Provo canyon, the whisper of wind in the pines, nature's patch work quilt on the mountain side and I remember that cold weather meant a kid could wander without having to listen for rattlesnakes.  But  then the deer hunters would be in the woods...a danger of a different kind.  Ah Autumn you are a frisky visitor.  

"Autumn, the year's last loveliest smile."
~ Wm. Cullen Bryant

Time to shake off the reverie, lace up and go to the gym and then head out to finally get some new photos.  There is much chatter here about it being an "El Nina" year.  What does it mean to a transplanted neo-New Englander?  Are they meaning six feet of snow and 40 below temps?  The Subaru sits in the garage willing and able to drive over six inches of unplowed snow.  Still have an emergency kit for the car.  I'll see what needs to be stocked for the house.   But six cords of wood ... not on the agenda! This Autumn, El Nina or not, can be viewed with deep appreciation.  Time is on the march ~ up and out of the house.


Out on the prairie said...

I just mow my leaves shooting them into my garden beds. The mulch is good for lawn and garden, plus a rake isn't a tool I like to manuever. We can burn lawn waste here also.

Donna said...

I know that you had a difficult summer and now you are coming back to a normal life, just as the seasons are changing. Take it easy when it comes to raking those leaves! You still are not back in top form yet. Seriously, it takes almost a whole year before you are steady on your feet and get around well.

I enjoyed your lovely photos!

WR said...

Hi Donna:

As much as I would like to be 'better than before' ~ and my knee is ~ my energy lags and I have yet to sleep more than a couple of hours at night. When making final rounds at the end of the day I have to convince my self to lift my feet as my shoes feel soooo heavy! :-/ So swimming, resistance exercise, the tread mill and stationary bike have become part of my life. It is going to be quite a while before my endurance returns to something that approaches normal. Thank you for checking in now and then. It's god to hear from someone that has been there!

Donna said...

Yes, but don't YOU Overdo, young lady!!!! Picture taking...ok...twisting around on your knee is Not acceptable!!
Enjoy your chance at leisure!!!

Donna said...

Enfurance will be a problem for a while. I remember the continual tiredness well. Sleeping poorly is one of the most prevalent complaints from knee replacement recipients. Between the trauma of the operation (which is essentially an amputation) and the long-term use of narcotic medications, your body has been through a LOT. And I hate to say this, a body that is older than 40 years just has a harder time healing and getting back in shape.

You WILL get better though! I just went to British Columbia and photographed grizzly bears, for crying out loud! I would have never thought I could have done it just a little over a year after that operation and recovery from he##. I'm telling you this so that you know that there is hope! And you need to hold on to that hope! The doctors and nurses tell you a tale about recovery in just a few short months. You really don't feel like yourself again (and return to normal sleep) until about a year.

I still have problems with dragging my foot on that leg with the replacement. But I limped for 30 years, so I have to think hard about walking normally. On the sleep, take tylenol pm to help you get through the night. Also, let yourself rest more. It's part of the healing process. Your stamina will come back, I promise!

WR said...

i haven't used pain killers of the narcotic variety for weeks because I went back(part-time and full time at the beginning of week 6) to work two weeks after surgery. Still tired though and the narcotic use even if for a few weeks dims memory of the event and life while using them. It is quite the hike back to health. Most of the elders I work with are in their 70's and 80's when they have a hip or knee replacement so going back to work is a none issue.

Hiking through BC is indeed inspirational!!! :-) Wow. Aren't Grizzly amazing! How lucky to have had the photographic opportunity. I'll have to give some thought to what I would like to do a year from now. It would get my mind off of exericse and sleep deprivation!!

Thank you again for sharing. It helps to know that this abnormal state is normal!

Donna said...

Hi Girlfriend! Just looking to see if you had time to do the Brenda Photo Challenge photos...It's fine if you forgot! You just continue to HEAL!!!
Have a great weekend!

Donna said...

How funny, but I came back to see if you posted anything, and the word verification is "hiker"! How's that for a coincidence!

I can't imagine going right back to work so quickly after that surgery. No wonder you are exhausted! Go ahead and make some plans on what you want to do next years, because you WILL be able to get out and about!

Anonymous said...

It's been a long time since I last visited this oasis. The words and the images of autumn almost reach the sadness it brings for me. I love the color and the evenings by the fire and the crisp air but I am waiting for the other snow shoe to drop!

I am participating in a new blog freshly minted: My camera work old and new is just artocious. I put up some instamatic photos for a piece called "Grandpa's Table: Breakfast in the Adirondacks." The only other photos are listed as "from the shakey camera of SamHenry" and are under the "about" tab on my main blog, On My Watch...the writings of SamHenry." My black lab died suddenly and I am left with a JRT a lot like your smallest. I will have to come again sooner rather than later. Anyone who loves the Bach Cello Concertos can't be all bad, eh? For sure a New Englandah! SH And I love this post.

Donna said...

I see you haven't posted in a quite a while and thought I would stop in and give you a Thanksgiving "hello"! I hope that you are doing well and regaining some of your energy. I promise that it will be much different for you by next summer! HUGS!