Ketchup!

I haven’t posted for a very long time, mostly because I got sick of hearing the sound of me whinging about my back pain so I was pretty sure anyone else reading this crap would be pretty sick of it too. The problem is that whenever I wanted to write, the first thing in my mind is always pain.  It’s the first thing I am forced to think about in the morning and the last thing I find myself still thinking about at night.  So I just stopped posting all together.

Anyway, I’m going to go back blurting my special brand of cynicism, vitriol and absurdity all over the interwebs once more.  No promises that I won’t end up repeatedly blogging about the diverse range of limitations, anxieties and challenges that chronic pain brings to my day to day life. But we will see what we can do.

So, the last 18 months, what have I been up to?  Here’s the highlights:

Health:  Well, as is probably bloody obvious from the passage above, my chronic neuropathic pain condition hasn’t resolved or even settled down to a dull roar over the last 18 months.  I seem to be constantly fluctuating between ‘everyday pain’ and ‘pain so bad I want to kill myself’.  It’s not a good place to be.  The drugs don’t help, I’ve been sleep deprived for the last five years and constantly fighting my ergomanic tendencies.  It’s just … well, fucking exhausting. Period.

Family:  Mr K and the Small Child are doing fab.  Mr K has gone from strength to strength at work, been promoted quicker than his wildest imaginings could have thought.  He’s been (finally) trying to look after himself a bit better than he did a few years ago which is awesome because as much as I relish the whole grieving in Tuscany thing… I can’t imagine life without him. The Small Child is not so small anymore, he’s now as tall as my shoulder and is in Grade 5 and turning 11 this year!  Can’t think where the time has gone.  He’s smart, inquisitive, happy, outgoing, popular with his peers, plays way too many computer games but loves reading which I think makes up for it. 🙂  He’s the light of my life and the joy in my every day.  My Mum is doing well and seems to be adjusting to singledom even though she’s still not so happy about it; my older sister has bought a huge new house and is much engaged in trying to make it habitable (I hope it doesn’t become some sort of Money Pit for them), my little sister is finally coming to the table and attempting to talk to me for the first time in years (which is a step in a positive direction) and the extended family are much as they ever were.  Yale is still a big part of my life and I don’t know what I would do without him.

Friends: Things on the friends front has been a bit up and down.  I have gotten to know some friends much better and have enjoyed growing those new friendships.  On the flip side, I have also been bitterly disappointed by some once dear old friends over the last year.  But I guess nothing lasts forever. I am very fortunate to have close friends in my life who I know I can depend on, for whom I am eternally grateful.

Azerbaijan:  We have been overly ambitious with the doing things to the house the last few years.  Since adding the media room, we have also done drainage works outside to stop the front yard flooding, had the kitchen remodeled and tarted up and are almost finished renovating the bathroom and the ensuite.  I’ve been banned from engaging in any new renovation endeavours until 2015… but I may voluntarily extend that embargo to be indefinite!   (So completely over trying to get work done around here and not being physically capable of contributing – nothing like feeling completely useless ALL the time).

Studies:  Well, in a rather unorthodox situation I was accepted to the Master of Philosophy program early last year but decided to defer and do an Honours year instead so that I could get good grades and move straight to a PhD program and maybe even get myself a fancy scholarship to boot. In hindsight, a good move.  Hons taught me a lot about how academia functions and what the expectations were and also the pitfalls of a student/supervisor relationship.  But other than that – I spent a LOT of time engaging in shit that interested me very little and I had had it up to the eyeballs with the heavy colonial and indigenous focus in the history department at Griffith by the end of it.  I finished my Hons year and even though I’m still in the middle of appealing my final grade (missed an Hons I by 1.5% on one assessment item which the powers that be could have rolled up had they so chosen to) I have now decided to jump across the river and go to UQ.  I’m starting my PhD studies there as at last week, with a very cool medieval historian for a supervisor and a secondary supervisor from the University of Otago who is internationally renown in my field.  So yay!  The Parking Fairy has obviously been working for me a bit there.  Oh, and did I mention a PhD in medieval history comes with free Latin classes!!!  (Read: compulsory Latin classes!)  😛

Hobbies:  I’ve taken up shooting again.  Pistols mostly, which is fun and challenging and something that even a physically challenged noompty like me can still be competitive at which is good.  It’s taken a long time to find a sport where being broken isn’t either prohibitive or hugely disadvantageous.  I have my very own .22 semi-auto Beretta 87 target pistol which I absolutely love and will be hitting the range more as the weather cools down (fuck Brisbane summers for outdoor activities in general).   Still playing medieval dress ups in the SCA and last year went to quite a few events.  Have made some nice light weight cotehardies so I don’t feel like I’m drowning in layers in warmer weather.  Am hoping to teach a few classes at Festival this year on areas related to my studies if people are interested so we shall see how that goes.

I think, other than that… things here continue as normal. We are mostly well, even intermittently happy!  And spending each day trying to make the best choices we can with the information we have before us.   🙂

RMB

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