Without sensation in my thumb, index and now most of my middle finger, injuring my fingers / hand has become a daily occurrence. I bent 3 fingernails backwards trying to open the oven door - didn't have my hand on the bar, just the tip of my fingers, but I couldn't tell... I have more paper cuts and file folder cuts than ever - and don't those feel great when you soap up your hands and discover them... My brother-in-law put my new aquarium tank down on my index and middle fingers yesterday and I didn't really notice until I tried to move away... The list goes on. The fact that the numbness is progressing rather than receding is bothersome... Only 13 days until I have the EMG nerve study though... hoping for answers. 'Cause the pain in my arm / shoulder today is OUT OF CONTROL!
Hubby is trying to organize some of the stuff in our basement. Mostly the totes of stuff I want to keep - photos, keepsakes, etc. He brought up a couple totes for me to go through the other day. So Thursday, he was working late, I sat down on the kitchen floor to look through tote #1. It's never a good thing to reminisce. At least not for me. I didn't have a horrible childhood or adolescence. But let's just say I'm really happy it is over. Long over. The tote contained everything I kept from about 11 years old through university. Photos. Yearbooks. Scripts from high school plays I acted in. Greeting cards. A shoebox of letters from my dear cousin H and some other friends. And all of my "Italy stuff".
I started flipping through photos. It turned out to be a task that will consume a couple of Sunday afternoons. So I piled them up in a shoe box (I actually need 3, but only had 1 handy) and I will start sorting through and putting them in some semblance of order another day. When you've got tears in your eyes in the first folder, you're never going to make it through the 40 to 50 more in the pile. (I like taking photos. I'm not very good at it, but I enjoy it.)
The yearbooks and scripts all had the usual notes your write each other in high school - loved being in French class with you - you're such a nice person - you were so great in the play - wish I'd got to know you better - etc... To me, most of it was crap made up by the person who signed just to show that I was included in the yearbook signing tradition, but no one really meant what they said. Honestly. And I only speak to or keep in touch with literally 3 people from that period of my life. When someone writes in your yearbook that you will be friends forever, at 14 to 18 years old, you believe them. When your friendships fall apart for reasons still unknown to you, reading stuff like that totally sucks. And tears fell. Especially the notes from someone you've known since the age of 3. When you sat together in every grade through lower school and planned as many classes together as you could in high school, lived at each others houses, went on vacations together... and now it's gone - well, it's been gone for about 14 years... it hurts. And more tears fell. (As I type there's a lump in my throat and a glisten in my eyes just remembering how I felt 2 days ago...)
Then I started looking at greeting cards. Ones from friends I don't remember where taken out of the bin. No point in keeping them. The ones from my mum and cousin H in Finland I put back inside. The cards from my Italy boyfriend were carefully piled up and put inside as well. Then the cards from my grandma. I didn't re-read them. I couldn't re-read them. It was too much emotionally for me to take by that point in sort. So I sat on the floor and cried. Or, more correctly, bawled like I did the day my grandma passed away. Who would have thought a Christmas card from 10 years ago could affect me so deeply.
At this point I gave up sorting that bin. I put everything I wanted to keep back inside. I really only threw out a couple of items - an old sketchbook from high school... never really did learn to draw, some cards and a few loose photos. Guess I'm just not ready to downsize my memories quite yet.
I don't know why I felt compelled to write about my sorting out experience. I just know I felt like I needed to share my emotions with someone. Maybe I'm emotional because everything else is just welling up inside of me - health, work, life in general... I love my life. I love my husband. I love my job. I love my family. Just facing more medical issues is waning me... and I'm usually a fighter, not a give-upper. I think right now, emotionally, I'm just tired. I haven't and won't give up. But I feel like I need a long vacation from all the medical stuff... even though I know that is impossible. Until my mood improves, I will soak in the sunshine streaming through the front window, enjoy a cup of herbal tea with honey, and make the best of my situation. After all, I'm still shiny side up. It could be a whole lot worse.