Monday, January 30, 2017

The Discomfort Zone

The older I get, the more I'm acutely aware of my own discomfort.  Looking back now, I know it was there all along.  I just wasn't paying attention because I was too busy forcing myself to do what I thought I was supposed to do rather than paying attention to how I felt doing it.  But, that's the thing about getting older, you start not giving a shit about what you're supposed to do and focus more on seeking contentment.  Except, comfort is difficult to come by as you get older.

Like the ultimate comfort: sleep.  (I'm writing this at 6am on Sunday morning.)  Why would I get up that early on a weekend morning when I don't need to be?  Because my body won't let me sleep in.  My legs get restless and my mind races.  Also, I really need to pee.  Even if I got up in the middle of the night to pee, which is happening more frequently now.  Especially, when I wake up in the middle of the night in a hot sweat, worrying about the state of the world and need to come downstairs to get a juice box to quench my thirst.  I think I'm the only one who even drinks juice boxes in my house anymore.  It's like I'm Benjamin Button, reverting back to a child, or something.

As, I sit here on my old wooden chair, writing in the dark, lit only by the glow of my computer screen wearing my third favorite pair of reading glasses because I couldn't find my favorite, nor its runner-up,  I haven't stopped moving.  I literally cannot sit still.  Because when I do my legs ache and/or they fall asleep.  Granted, this old wooden chair isn't exactly cozy.  But, the thing is, it doesn't even matter.      If I'm on the couch watching TV, it's the same thing.  I can't get comfortable even on a couch that's actually comfortable.  Up until the point that I fall asleep that is.  And if I start to watch a movie, that's exactly what will happen.  Oh, I'll promise my husband that this time it'll be different and I'll see the whole thing so he doesn't have to explain the parts I missed.  But, I'm a huge liar, apparently.

You know what's worse than sitting for long periods of time?  Standing for long periods of time.  Which I did this past week when I had to fulfill my mandatory volunteer hours working at the concession stand for my daughter's basketball team.  Which was combined with by far, my most substantial discomfort, social interaction.  So, I was slinging hot dogs and nachos with a woman I'd never met before trying to make small talk (which I abhor) trying to steer clear of controversial subjects.  Which these days, is pretty much everything.  Also, the elephant in the room is the one chair provided for the two of us.  And all I know, is I'm not going to be the selfish asshole who sits my ass in the chair.  Then the standoff began: we both stood for hours.  I leaned on the counter to get some relief for my sore back.  Checked on the snowfall out the window or the scoreboard during lulls to walk it off.

I admit, I finally did use the chair, standing behind it placing my arms on the back to stretch out like a cat.  But, hell if I was sitting in that thing.  Besides, I would've only been comfortable for 30 seconds, until I opened my damn mouth complaining about the lack of ethnic diversity in my neighborhood here in Conservativille.  Opening the door to a whole conversation on politics.  Again.  Oh Marie, shut up!  Why can't you talk about things like the weather?  But, that's only going to come back the environment.  Which, of course, is a whole other political topic.

So, that night, I went home, got in my pj's, snuggled up on the couch with my Restless Leg Syndrome and fell asleep there.  Again.  In the most comfortable of discomfort zones.


Penelope said...

Marie, I always read your blog because your writing is so good. Also, I have to congratulate you on your titles: they are excellent.
I suffered from Restless Leg Syndrome for years until it made working at the computer (and I depended on that for a career) and watching TV very difficult. Finally, spent my money and saw a top neurologist. Answer: Pramipexole 1 after each meal or 3 at night. Never looked back and that was 6 years ago. Get a prescription and you will see the difference.
By the way, you're not old. Just older. I was 56 when I started a 2nd career in Hispanic research. Lasted 13 years.
Good luck!

Marie Loerzel said...

@Penelope-Thank you so much for your very kind words! And there is hope for me yet then :)


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