March 19, 1998

Brisket and Pushing It

In the morning, it was as simple as putting the brisket in the slow cooker, adding a bottle of beer and just enough water to almost cover the meat, and then turning it on low.

When we got home, it was filling the air with the scent of corned beef. And I still had to get through my physical therapy exercise. Grr. Argh. Three things got me through it all, the knowledge that dinner was going to be there when I was done, the knowledge that John was going to do the marvelous job of doing mashed potatoes with cabbage and green onions, and that Regis was going to show up later to watch Buffy tapes.

I'm still of the opinion that all good PT's are also great consensual sadists. The exercises are always painful, but at least I'm attacking the pain instead of the pain ambushing me, and I have control over exactly what I put myself through.

Sometimes I think it's like when we're all kids and we hear, fairly constantly, from parents, "Do this, it's for your own good." I had a lot of that, in some ways, having near-sightedness, asthma, allergies to everything from sunlight to dust mites and every living thing that gave off the tiniest bit of 'stuff', and a light heart murmur as a kid. So I learned patience with all that. Mom was good about it, too, as she'd go with me to the doctors and she'd ask all the questions I was afraid of asking, demanding 'why's' from the doctor in terms that she could understand. Since she was a hortarculturist and, eventually, a lab tech in an amnieosyntesis lab, she knew enough terminology to surprise the doctors that initially took her accent in the wrong way. It was good in that I got the expectation that doctors should answer your questions, and I learned a lot about the kinds of questions one should ask.

So it makes it somewhat easier, in some sense. In the purely physical sense, though, physically therapy still just plain hurts.

Pushed all my exercises pretty much to the max of what the PT had said, which is good, in that those are the things that she wanted me to get to before they did the surgery. And I upped the time on the stationary bike by a stupid 25% of the time that I'd been on before. It hurt. It also felt really, really good when I stopped.

All the time I was on the bike, John was cooking. That was really fun to watch, and he did just fine in the kitchen, and near the end of my ride, he was cutting the beef brisket and offered me a piece, I laughed and said, "If you give me that, I'll throw up right now." But I got to see him dance at the taste of it, and Fezzik's tail went a mile a minute when he fed the pup some of the stuff. Good enough review for me.

I'm going to have to get all my hair cut off before the surgery. Showering with this long stuff is just too much work, and I remember what it was like to shower without one leg to completely stand on and having to juggle all the bottles. Not fun. But I should get pictures of the faded green of what it's like now before I chop it all off. But showering with two legs that work is actually pretty pleasant after a hard workout. So I basked in the hot water for a while, and then remembered dinner. So hopped out.

It was delicious.

In the midst of dinner, Regis arrived, played with Fezzik for a while as we finished off dinner. Then we all got desserts and settled on the couch and started to watch. The first episode was dessert time. Then for one entire episode, I worked on Regis' left arm, massaging, slowly, the tensions from it. Then for another episode, I did her right arm. Okay. Episodes without commercials or at least fast forwarded commercials. That was keen. By the end of it Regis said that I ruled, and her arms were feeling better, but I could tell they still weren't really loose. But loose enough, it seemed.

John and Regis then went out to dump a bunch of sand from the back of her truck, which she kept there for anti-sliding purposes during the winter. It's clearly spring here in the NorthWet, now, so she dumped the sand in our area that needed some filling, and off she went. John and I then curled up together and went to sleep.

© 1998 by Liralen Li.

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