Sunday, October 09, 2011

Unsolved Problems

There's something to be said for living into the 7th decade.  I'm a slow learner but I eventually catch on to some stuff.  For example, unsolved problems seem to plague us humans for long, long, long period of time.  I've decided that if I'm uncomfortable about something for more than 24 hours it's time to do something.  Usually that something is to talk to somebody about it.  The inside of my own head is not a safe place to be with a problem.  I usually just look for someone or something to blame.  Sometimes it's me, but mostly not.

Some problems can be solved; some can't; some can be solved at a later time.  However, I certainly have to start with accepting reality.  My physical problems only have temporary solutions at this point.  I've worked really hard at learning what causes them and what will help.  I know that exercise (the right kind, guided by people who know what they're doing), good nutrition (guided by people who know what they're doing), yoga and meditation, plenty of sleep, avoiding stress and food that promotes inflammation, and a positive frame of mind are all things that help.  So every day I do my best to do what's needed to take care of myself. 

I've learned to let go of my physical problems when I've done what I can to take care of myself, and then I just get on with my life.  Thinking about them all day or griping doesn't help at all.  In fact I really think it makes me worse.  I avoid pills too.  Pain meds just mask the problems and don't solve anything, plus there are gross side effects.  I just avoid them, not completely refuse them.  There are times when I've done everything else I can and it's time to use them.  But I'm aware of their dangers. 

If something new comes up, I make a quick trip to a good doctor and try to figure out what's up and whether there's something that can be done.  Sometimes it's as simple as using crutches when I have to be on my feet for several hours.  Using crutches keeps some of the weight off my hip and knee so they don't become inflamed and sore.  Simple solution.  That solution allowed me to spend several hours seeing the sights at the state fair without having a lot of pain.

In my past life I would have tried a couple of things and then just given up, assuming that I was just doomed.  Sometimes there are no obvious solutions and I have to surrender to reality and learn to accept and cope, but that strategy is actually a solution. 

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