What you're reading now is being typed under the influence of some heavy-weight opiates, thanks to my continuing back spasms. Strangely, I feel almost as though I'm sitting next to myself. My body feels a bit numb and heavy and all sort of floppy. But my back still hurts. A lot.
It's been a funny old day. It began with my daughter informing me that my son had tried to flush her pyjama bottoms down the toilet. There was no physical way of me being able to sort that out. "OK. Wait for Daddy to come home from his night shift, then he'll get them out for you. No more flushing Jim-Jams down the toilet, please. Apologize to your sister!"
I was quite pleased with myself at breakfast time: I managed to help with toast-buttering and hair-brushing, giving the kids their medications and making drinks. I even started to see to my own breakfast: hot weetabix. I put it in the microwave this morning. As I type this (at 11pm), I have realized that the bowl is still in the microwave, patiently waiting for something to happen...
Later I had an appointment with the GP to get some stronger pain relief. I have measured my progress by comparing my ability to walk. I was walking like a Zombied John Wayne; now I walk like C3P0 has crapped himself.
I look stunningly awful. All of my stomach tone has been reduced to a muffin-top, thanks to the muscles in my back doing all they can to protect the spine from further damage. I can't do anything with my hair; and my face has broken out in spots because I can't lean over the sink to wash my face, properly. Thank God I'm not famous, or my career would be in tatters as a result of photos showing how exceedingly terrible I look, such is our fickle society...
This afternoon was a bit better. My son woke from his nap in a foul mood, and whilst I gingerly hugged him on my lap, trying to cheer him up, he weed all over me. That's a real sign of trust. He felt that relaxed and confident with me that he felt he could just "let go".
Later, my daughter had an almightly meltdown, largely as a result of the week's unusual events. In the middle of the screeching, she suddenly demanded that Daddy painted her bedroom bright red.
I sensed anger issues. We declined that order, which only increased her rage further.
For the next twenty minutes, there was absolute mayhem. In the background, Simon Mayo was playing tracks and talking to us about something I couldn't hear, because one child was screaming about red paint, and the other child wanted some sellotape so that he could hold the sausages in his frying pan in place. Pat was telling the screaming child to calm down. I was trying to not tense up, to avoid the spasms in my back, whilst attempting to make dinner. I was feeling guilty about not having fed us all healthy food so had decided upon roasted butternut squash and pasta, something far beyond my capabilities in my current state, and required a mammoth effort. In the end, the screaming child went into time out to calm down, Pat went to work, my son volunteered to lay the table, and I contacted the GP surgery to ask whether someone could do a home visit as my symptoms were getting suddenly worse. Looking back on it now, I can see why!
The GP did come, for which I was very grateful for - just as the kids were sitting down for dinner. I hobbled upstairs with her, instructing my children to sit nicely at the table and eat. Whilst I was being examined, my daughter was giving me regular updates: "Mum! Mum? MU-UMM? MUM!! He poured his drink into his bowl and now it's overflowing and it's gone all over the table and onto the floor! MUM! Are you listening to me?!" I sighed. "OK. Thanks for letting me know". "Mum? MUM! MU-UMM? We don't want anymore, can we watch TV?" "Yes". There really are days for picking battles. Today is not one of them...
And now, the kids are asleep, I'm feeling the side-effects of Tramadol, still feeling pain in my back, and reflecting on how mayhem can be amusing, especially whilst under the influence. I've just watched the last episode of Torchwood, but didn't understand any of it.
I can see how people become addicted to opiates, as they are slightly marvelous, but they are also hard work. I can't be like this all the time, it's just too weird. On another occasion where I had severe back pain, I had the misfortune of watching an episode of Dad's Army having taken a Tramadol tablet. It made me laugh. Hard. Tears were streaming down my face, before I realized that I was laughing at a programme I've never liked. Then the tears were of sadness, for realizing that things were that bad.
I have one thing to be grateful for, though: I still have a sense of humour. I've certainly needed it, today!