Friday, 29 August 2014

Stupidity


What is it with me and, no doubt, many others.
You know that what you are doing isn’t good for you. Experience has shown that that is so and you have often paid the price. And yet, you refuse to learn.

"It needs doing”, is what you say. Or  “It’s my duty”.  Or  “But I enjoy it”.
“Maybe this time I’ll get away with it”.
“Let’s just test the waters, no more than a toe .... "
“I promise to stop at the smallest sign”.
“I’m sure it’ll be alright”.

Luckily, it was. At the first sign of trouble I stopped, terrified. Sat down, swallowed my medicines and waited. Pathetically whimpering “please, please, not again.”  Not out loud, of course, that would be too shameful. I do have a bit of dignity left, in case you’re wondering.

Stretching up into the plum tree, picking what the birds had left, then heaving a dozen heavy fork loads of damp vegetation from one compost bin into the other, following this with filling the green wheelie bin ready for garden rubbish collection and dragging it 170 yards down the drive to the road, none of that would have fazed me before. In fact, it would have been barely a couple of hours work.

I hate that I can’t do this now without repercussions. It’s not fair. Not bloody fair.

How stupid of me that I can’t get it into my head that things are what they are and that the judicious application of common sense would ensure a relatively trouble free existence for many years to come.

“Yes, but ..........

"Against stupidity the Gods themselves struggle in vain,” so old Friedrich von Schiller said.

I left the fork leaning against the compost heaps. Every time I go by I pick it up, load it up and dump the load into the next bin. One or three forkfuls at a time. I wonder how long I manage to restrict myself.




43 comments:

  1. I understand completely, Friko."'Easy does it" is just plain annoying advice, even if it is on smack on target.
    Tomorrow I plan to attack the kingdom of weeds that has grown up all over my yard, a task that always takes its toll on my back. I hope I can harness some common sense.

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  2. Harvesting my garden and fields right now, and is top priority and hard work ... racing against impending winter ... not to do this would be ... stupidity ...

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  3. We all have to accept change.....though it is very hard sometimes. Why do we think that we, with our older bodies, can keep doing what we did in the past? Downsize while you are able...be honest and accept your limitations.Those are words that I have heard so many times. Just this year I decided to do it a different way and the outcome isn't so bad. My gardens aren't what they used to be....but then neither am I.
    Have a wonderful weekend....Balisha

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  4. Oh I hear you Friko - my garden is also suffering because of my 'fear' I will 'annoy' my back and it will punish me. Waking with the hope the twinges have abated is even more stressful than not doing the work that put them there in the first place lol
    Cathy

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  5. Oh yes. And I am a slow learner too. Stupid and stubborn to boot. Which is not a good mix.

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  6. Friko, hoping that "next time" will be different. You'll see that task that attracts your attention and will have a flashback to this post. And sit down and reflect on the getting of wisdom.

    Mind you, I do think you are a very wise woman. I know you are! xo

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  7. yes, know what you mean. this crap about getting old, not for faint of heart....

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  8. Sigh. I'm no different, Friko. I have a nice time at the Drop Zone and begin to consider that maybe it really isn't time yet to stop doing what I'm sure I should have stopped a while back. "Just a little more..." And then reality sets in, and I begin to gain a little perspective that I lost. Yes, I'm there too. Thanks for this reminder that I'm not alone. :-)

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  9. Friko, I found this in the last couple of weeks working on painting in my bathroom. I just don't have the dexterity or the flexibility I need to get up and down off the ladder dozens of times and paint with a brush and roller. I managed, but it was a bit tough. I did manage to do things a bit slower than I would have ten years ago!

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  10. Ah well, we will continue to do those things that give us pleasure regardless of the cost. Perhaps all it needs is a new approach, like you are doing, one forkful or two at a time.

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  11. I had the same day on Wednesday. I stayed out too long, did a lot, and the humidity was high along with the temperature. I could hardly make it up the stairs of my deck. Thought it could end badly. Will probably do it again because I am sure the next time will be better. I don't ever want to give up, because what is left if I don't try.

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  12. I wouldn't bet on this one! Sorry! I've been there done that.

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  13. Something in us doesn't want to accept limitations. Perhaps It's what helps us stay active much longer. Tired muscles stay fit longer. Yet, a tired back may give up and punish us at a time when we don't anticipate it all.
    Not stupidity; just hopefullness.

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  14. I'm exactly the same.
    I know I shouldn't change the sheets, hang the wash and vacuum all in one day, yet I do it and pay for it later.
    I know I should take my granny trolley to the shops instead of carrying home far too much, yet I tell myself it's just a couple of things, so I carry them and pay for it later.
    I know I shouldn't walk for hours at a time taking photos, but I do it anyway, completely forgetting the time and boy do I pay for that later!

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  15. I wouldn't call it stupidity, but stubbornness. (Did I spell that right?)
    I observe exactly the same with my Dad. He is completely knackered after a lot less gardening work than what he used to be able to do, but he still insists it has to be done... NOW... when nobody is there to help him. Only for the really big jobs does he arrange for one of his friends from a nearby allotment to give him a hand (or two). For him, it is proving to himself that he can still do it, that he is not yet such an "alter Dackel" after all. But actually, he knows better. He just doesn't want to know.

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    1. "knows better, just doesn't want to know"

      How aptly this sums it up! :)

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  16. I've learned I have five or six hours of energy in me each day. I used to have a dozen or more. And never before did I strain my shoulders while watering a garden.

    Good thing I don't have to go to work every day!

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  17. het lijkt wel ofdat het overal gebeurd,maar waarom?

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  18. Hi Friko - I hope long enough to let you live comfortably and in peace ... glad you were able to get some plums before the birds ate them all ... but your garden is your delight .. I'm sure little and often is the way - getting creasier and crinklier and crankier is just life sadly! Cheers and enjoy the weekend and next week's warmer weather ... Hilary

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  19. You are most definitely not alone. My days off are spent running around exhausting myself. Every, Single. Week. And when I go back to work I think that I am not going to do that again. Repeat and repeat and repeat.

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  20. We ain't the spring chickens we used to be. I exercise, stretch, life weights, and here I sit having to be careful over some damage I did to my back...not now how or when. It has been 18 years since I had a back issue. I do forget that I now have aging bones and muscles and that I will have to force myself to slow down!!

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  21. i think at times we dont want to accept them...because we do and that starts the slippery slope of all the things we have to accept....

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  22. That's my life anymore. A little at a time. Piece by piece. Step by step. Getting things done in short segments over time. Took me quite a while to adjust, I tell you! But when I (my ego) tried to fight it I paid dearly. Well, I can pay dearly even though I don't fight it anymore--LOL! My body forced my life to slow down in many, many ways. Face it--the only thing we can depend on is change. And there are new things to learn around every corner. Hang in there. It gets easier. *hugs*

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  23. I hate limitations as well, but I'm learning to come to an uneasy truce with them. The hard way, of course.

    ;)

    PS. My mom's husband has atrial fibrillation. He has visited Scripps in San Diego, CA and is scheduled for an ablation surgery next month. They give him a 90 percent chance of complete cure. He did control his condition (for the most part) with medication for many years, but now he is excited about the prospect of living free of those nasty episodes.

    It's amazing what medicine can do these days, and it's good to know that there are other options if the episodes become too limiting and/or frequent. In the meantime, "easy does it" is the phrase, I guess. But "easy does it" is NOT easy, is it?

    =)

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  24. Don't, Friko, please don't. I do no wish to know. When the time comes I shall do a Churchill and fight weeds not so much on the beaches as in my (and your) garden and if blood, sweat and tears fail I shall go into denial and declare that whilst many a battle came to nothing I'll bloody win the war. If it kills me.

    Must measure how many miles you are away from me. I'll give your soil a good turn. For the moment. Take heart, Friko, in our truly old age we'll just watch the meadow do what meadows do: Grow on their own accord.

    U

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  25. I think we can all relate, Friko. Sometimes humour helps. I have a friend whose husband likes to remind her, "Better go easy, Ann. Remember, you're not 75 any more!" (She turned 76 this summer.)

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  26. Why is it that our heads never listen to what our bodies are trying to tell us until they have to shout. I'm just the same myself.

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  27. Yes, slowly learning. Very frustrating. Very frustrating.

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  28. Getting older is so humbling as things that were once easy become difficult. Learning to pace oneself, learning to ask for help, learning to be thankful for what remains -- bitter pills to swallow.

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  29. I don't see this as stupidity. How annoying it is that we must forego so many little joys because our body demands it. It's not at all acceptable, even if it is necessary.

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  30. Yep, me too! I still believe that things might be different today.

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  31. I always say to myself: “It’s my duty” and do despite of my health condition. You have to care yourself and say:Stop for today, the rest is for other day...
    Take care, dear!

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  32. I know once I start something, it is mos difficult to stop. I know if I continue, I will suffer, however, there is that stubborn streak in me, that says "go do it, finish it, and its done". That stubborn streak usually wins and I am sore for a few days. So much for my control, eh. he,he

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  33. I think we're all having to learn the same lesson, Friko, and all kicking against the restrictions it brings. I'm certainly more and more aware of having to pace myself with tasks like gardening and heavy housework and it's frustrating. You have my sympathy.

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  34. It's so hard to let go of our younger self-images, of the certainty we used to have in doing certain physical things, and accept the fact that we're getting old and have new limitations. I'm not nearly as strong as I used to be, have less stamina and don't do well on stairs. I never used to have to consider whether most everyday activities would be possible (or wise). Now I have to stop and consider.... and it isn't easy...not for any of us.

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  35. Oh my, we do have a little trouble with the common sense thing, don't we? But the solution is taking smaller steps, lifting smaller loads, and resting in between.

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  36. Even though I'm still working, I've had to adjust around the boats. I don't go up and work on masts any more. I don't work from floating platforms, and I don't do certain things that require standing without support on rails. If a customer fusses, I simply tell them it's part of my self-designed health plan. If they don't like it, they can let me subcontract the work I can't do, or they can find someone else. So far, everyone has been agreeable. It's a good thing, since in order to keep working, I have to be able to work, and that comes first.

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  37. I understand. Sometimes the shock of the realization that my body is responding to such physical stress is more devastating than the inability to perform a task at hand. I know this feeling all to well. Hopefully, my heart has finally been fixed. Hopefully.

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  38. "I hate that I can’t do this now without repercussions. It’s not fair. Not bloody fair."

    Oh friend… I understand. I so, so understand. I'm SO glad that you were able to manage the symptoms quickly and effectively… and then to manage yourself. That's the hardest part! ;)

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  39. Limitations which have only recently begun to exists are very difficult to accept. And yet we must. It stinks when our will strongly outdoes our body's ability. Enjoy as much as you can but as safely as you can so the days ahead don't limit you even more.

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  40. I am so, so sorry that you are going through all this, and while I know situations are different, I do have a pretty good understanding of the emotional part of being unable to do what one loves, what one is used to, what has always been done.

    I'm relieved that the symptoms seem to have let off and that nothing worse occurred, yet the continual concern doesn't go away, does it? Learning to manage is so tough. You have all my best wishes.

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