Tag Archives: rehabbing

The Desire to be Spent

It’s before 7 on a Saturday morning. The naive plan was, I’d get up and go swimming. I’m up. My body tells me I’m a fucking fool. Sleep, it says.
So, I’m going to. I’ll go back to bed in a few. And I’m all right with that.
The reality is, though, that I’m starting to realize between last night and today, just how much this not-working-out thing is killing and deadening my soul.
It’s worse than not getting laid. Far, far worse. Continue reading

On Strange Times: Our Heroine Turns The Page

Y’all needs a status report, so here’s an update on the big, bad world of Steff. 🙂
I’ve had the biggest roller coaster week ever and I’m still reeling. My new mattress set came yesterday and judging by the strange cohesive feeling in my body this morning, my speculation over my bed being at least 60% of my back problem might have been understating things.
I’m still swirling in a very busy world of doing this spending spree I’ve arranged for. Monday will be my visit to the furniture factory to buy a new sofa. A wealthy furniture-store-owning uncle has arranged for me to get wholesale on a handmade leather sofa, so, I’m buying something that’s way, way beyond the means of most of my friends and I, for a couple hundred more than I’d budgetted, but in 3-4 years I’ll still be able to sell it for what I’ve paid, so why the hell not? I’ll show you what I get once I decide. Think retro-hip leather with sleek straight lines, firm and no overstuffing. Rat pack and martinis. Continue reading

Good Times Ahead? Let's Hope.

I normally write mornings, but I feel really good right now. In every sense. I want to remember it now, rather than chance it ebbs away during the night.
It’s times like these I remember why I never wanted to go to bed as a child: I was very, very scared life would go on without me. Sadly, growing up I only learned that’s exactly what it does. But I’ve learned to like that. It’s something to wake up to, isn’t it? The constant movement and shift of our little microcosms.
All is not sunshine and roses just yet, boys and girls. I still need to get a loan this week in order to make important changes in my life, but if I don’t, then at least a fairy godmother — or at least my aunt and uncle — did save me heroically with a much-needed immediate infusion. They’re awesome to the nth. They sent me a surprisingly large cheque today (four times what I asked for, double what they said they’d send), so I can pay the rent-eating monsters from the east (“landlord” type things) and maybe even get important cycling and scootering gear. I need that stuff now. Our good weather died today and fall’s forecasted to arrive with a vengeful fury sometime afore noon tomorrow.
Summer, how sweet you were. You shall be missed. But thanks for overstaying your welcome. Make a note: Come back any time.
And, my back! It’s loosening up! With the damp weather coming in, I’m coughing but it doesn’t hurt. (Astounding. You have no idea. I nearly jumped with glee when putting my jeans on didn’t make me cry out this morning. ) I’m even becoming, dare I say it? Flexible? I’m not normally the ankles-behind-the-ears type but, you know, I do yoga. I even sprang up some steps today before I stopped myself with a “Whoa, slow down, skippy!” admonishing. Walk before you run, Grasshopper.
Now, I do have this little kink in my right hip. But, hey, it’s only fitting; we already knew I had a little kink in me. It’ll settle down.
I can work again. This is good. I can produce. I like producing. Hell, I can even get crazy and live a little. Maybe even date some boys.
But most of all, I have that “I came, I saw, I kicked its ass” feeling about everything. I feel really, really good for the first time in a while. Life has tried to beat me down, and while I had some bad moments, I kept the faith over all. And look how it’s turning out.
Did I mention I’ve lost weight during all this? Shit, man. I’m wearing the Joe Boxer pajamas I bought a few years ago, and the pants that I couldn’t even pull over my thighs are eight inches loose on me. (They were about six at their best.) I haven’t weighed myself, I promised myself I’d wait until one week after my back healed. Even if I’ve lost weight, wouldn’t it be cool to get on the scale in a week or two and see an even larger number than I expect? Wicked.
I knew this would pass, but, you know, when you’re expecting to be holed up for 3 days and it turns into 31, well. It gets a little trying.
But I came. I saw. I kicked its ass. Simply put, I win. This is good. Let’s hope this continues a little longer.
After all, I know I don’t deserve it. No, I’ve earned it. And I want it now. Thanks. Got a side of fries for that?

WHEW! A Better State of the Steffs, & Schoolgirl Kilts!

Yesterday became increasingly dark for me, even though I kept my good humour alive on Twitter in an attempt to keep my mind off things, so when my aunt called me in the evening to see how I was doing, I suddenly broke into the biggest cry I’ve had in a while.
I tried to downplay my financial worries and my fears, tried to be a bit more of a “man” about things, but it didn’t work out very well. I got off the phone and literally wailed, “I want my mommy!” It wasn’t one of my finest moments.
This morning she rang me. Her and my uncle are sending me a gift of cash to tie me over, as I’ve only ever been this desperate once before. I was so relieved I flat-out bawled yet again.
But yay for me. Yay for seeing that little light in the tunnel. Yay for my back feeling a bit better. Yay for maybe turning the page on the darkest part of my recent trials. Continue reading

A Brief Bit of Reflection

[Ed Note: Just a reminder– This URL is NOT permanent; I’ll be back on www.smutandsteff.com before you know it. Do not adjust yer feeds or bookmarks.]

Adversity is like eating your vegetables; it can often be unpleasant and may even leave a bad taste in your mouth, but it makes you grow big and strong.
There’s nothing like getting interrupted on your path of positivity to a new and better you only to be thrown into a time reminiscent of the worst years of your life. A big reminder of from whence you’ve come can serve to recharge the batteries and fire up the will.
The last two weeks I’ve spent sprawled upon my back as my body rebelled against me for all the working out I’ve done this year — hours and hours of yoga, 1300+ kilometres of cycling, 40,000+ steps climbed in highrises, all since March, with much of the last three months interrupted by physical problems — have given me the opportunity to do a lot of thinking.
I’m still stuck in the whirlwind of mental processing that comes with change and turbulence for me, and while I can cut through it during a political rant, any kind of introspective writing has me hitting a lot of brick walls right now. It’s just how I roll. Continue reading

It's Not You, It's Me

That phrase is among select company in the statements none of us wants to hear in a relationship we value. It’s gone beyond being a standard line given when something inexplicable has gone awry in a relationship to being a pop-culture joke of reknown.
In Seinfeld, George Costanza freaks out after being dumping by a woman, saying, “You’re giving me the ‘It’s not you, It’s me’ routine? I invented ‘It’s not you, it’s me’. Nobody tells me it’s them not me. If it’s anybody, it’s me!”
But this time, it’s the Guy.
He needs some time, he says. Life’s hard. Between the rehabbing, working incessantly, being completely out of sick time for the next ten months, the frustrations of life being different from what it was, the fatigue, the lack of freedom and fun, the residual depression that comes with… It’s proving to be a hell of a reality cocktail for him.
Apparently, the future of the relationship is in jeopardy. As a result of all the things going on for him, he’s been left feeling flat and emotionless, and it’s eating him up.
I’m worried that it’s over. My worries are valid. A decision won’t be made yet, there is no timeline. Space will be had. Things will be revisited. We’ll see what’s next on the horizon then.
The strange thing is, we both care for each other a great deal. I know it. He knows it. We’re a great match. On paper, we have so damned much going for us, so how it’s here, how it’s this way, neither of us can figure out beyond just really dumb fucking luck.
I’ve had reservations since the get-go with his badly broken leg that he suffered only a couple weeks into our relationship. I should have played things differently. I should have pulled back more, made myself scarce, but I didn’t. I wanted to pretend things were fine, too. Delusion is a great plaything.
Unfortunately, I know exactly what he’s going through. I should have known better. I’ve been down that road – coming home from work so fucking tired all you want to do is die a while, cry a while, whatever it takes to reset. The last thing you want is having to deal with people of any kind, because you haven’t even got the energy to deal with yourself anymore.
Am I feeling negative about it? Yeah. Because although I’ve come through those injuries and know that he’s at his lowest point right now – there’s a false optimism when you get that first update on the prognosis from the doc: “Progressing nicely” – because it’s never as easy as you hope it will be. In fact, it’s harder. You throw excess overtime and challenges into the mix, and then you’re sent spiraling into a hole you think’ll take you all the way to China.
And one day, things change. One day, things get better, and you come back to yourself, and things carry on as you wish they would’ve a long time before.
The only question is whether I’ll be around to see it. Whether I want to be. And right now, I don’t even know the answer to that. I know he doesn’t want to hurt me, but I’ve been pushing little hurts and neglects aside for a couple weeks now, with a realization of what he’s been enduring and cutting a little slack as a result. I’m not sure what my breaking point is. I had a vision for this relationship, and that break broke more than his bones.
I have no cards to play. I get to back off, and that’s all I can do.
That’s adversity for you. It’s why hard times are so consistently responsible for trouncing relationships. In the end, we all close our eyes and become prisoners in our own minds. Lovers seldom can truly break through the walls we raise between us and the world. We try to let them in, but there’s a place inside they often just can’t reach (and sometimes we can’t, either), and when things like these happen, those places grow cavernous and dark and dank.
The thing that makes this really hard is, I want the Guy in my life, but if this was to end tomorrow, I’m not sure he would be. I’ve never stayed friends with an ex-lover. I don’t have it in me. Just like I can’t do random, casual sex; my emotional capacity doesn’t work that way. My reservoirs run far too deep to just turn the valve off and change pressure modes for comfort’s sake. I can’t ignore matters of the heart, and I can’t pretend they’re less than they are. “Friends” are nice, but when you’re wanting a lover, there’s not much sense in pretending you’re not the person you know you are, or that you don’t have the needs and desires you do.
I sometimes hate how life can change in an instant. (Ironically, mine seems to be changing two ways in an instant. I’m so fucking torn.) There’s so little power any of us has over our circumstances, and when the going gets tough, we have to hold on to the things we have and struggle to keep ourselves in the game.
Only this time it just isn’t that easy. Nothing is.
It’s a waiting game now, and my suspicions last week about overtime possibly being a dire contributor to this relationship have proved true; I saw it posing a bad shift in balance between the me time I have far too much of, and the time he’s had virtually none of. I don’t blame him for the overtime, he’s had no choice. We all know what responsibilities to the workplace entail, and we’ve all sacrificed our private lives to an extent for it.
I just wonder if either of us really knew what was on the table.
Now we do.
Am I optimistic? As I write this, not particularly. And I fucking hate that. I have no question that he wants it to work with me. He’d be a fool not to want that. I just don’t think he has it in him right now. And if he doesn’t, then I probably won’t have it in me to be anything outside of what I’ve been thus far for him. I wish I wasn’t, but it’s how I’m built. I foresee things being hard to overcome if it goes that way.
For now, we wait. We hope. We wonder. Then we see.

Sombre Thoughts On A Friday Night

You ever have that feeling of, “I want sex. Now.” Well, of course you have. Haven’t we all? Now, how about that feeling coupled with a non-existent desire to masturbate?
See, now you understand why I’m confused. Well, I’m not confused now, but a few minutes ago I was, when I was lying in bed, planning on doing the dirty deed – naked, under the covers, at 7 on a Friday. Why? Because I’m tired. I want sleep. I’m really, fucking tired. I’ve not been in the bed so early (for such an innocent reason) on any night, let alone a Friday, in a long-ass time.
But I was lying there, contemplating masturbation for the first time in a while, and literally shrugged it off and said, “Fuck it, I’ll write.”
I’ve barely seen my man this week. Briefly Friday, a little Saturday night, and a nice but disappointing Sunday, and not since then. It feels weird, like forever or something. Normally, we hook up Fridays. I don’t know if he stayed home tonight after all, but there was talk of poker – which would be his first time hanging out with the guys since he badly broke his leg six weeks ago, and probably just the kind of night he needs.
Okay, let’s call a spade a spade: Broken legs are shit for the sex life, all right? They are. We’ve been doing our best, trying to manage between positioning, fatigue, pain, and all those complications that arise from any serious injury, but when it’s a leg, it’s all just that much more frustrating and hard. Besides, sex, when positions are not much of an option, tends to be a little unfulfilling. It’s really too bad, because it’s all about variety, isn’t it?
Mentally, I want to get fucked silly. One of those exhausting, sweaty, draining experiences that leaves you gasping – with this guy of mine. Physically, I suppose I probably desire it, but I don’t feel it. Logically, I know it’s just not going to happen for a bit. It’s all depending on what the doctor tells my man Tuesday.
In case you haven’t already heard, he shattered his lower right leg when it snapped like a twig during a bad tumble down a slope. A couple titanium plates later, and he was in a world of hurt for a long while. He’s had no cast on the leg, just plates, so he’s been very vulnerable for the duration of the injury. He’s also in a world of suspense. Apparently, he claims, 5% or more of patients of this kind of injury need to be opened up again (and he has two 5”+ incisions, on both sides, just above the ankle) and have the plates re-set.
So, Tuesday, we find out. He’s worried, and I’m concerned. Honestly, another six weeks of this… there’s a lengthy rehab as-is, but going back to square one would be so hard, because then there’s another wait, another period of suspense, and more pain, more adversity… Who needs it?
We just don’t know. I’m positive about it, but I can’t say I’m optimistic. We just don’t know. The possibility, though, is freaky. If he gets a “Wow, you’re doing dandy!” from the doc, man, I can’t imagine how good each of us will be feeling about it. That’d be sensational. God, would that be great. We’d have hope back and could start talking less tentatively about the future.
It’s not until you’re at the end of these kinds of scenarios that you really begin to appreciate how difficult it has been.
As the “girlfriend” of the boyfriend who’s on the disabled list, I’m left having to check my emotions all the time. I’m not allowed to be too concerned, I can’t be too fluffy or doting, and there’s so fucking much that I have to resist saying or expressing.
I’m left feeling like any of my concerns are selfish or that they pale in comparison to his problems. But we all do this. “Oh, but X has it harder than me.” So? Your emotions are invalid, then?
Who says our feelings come with built-in comparison scales? They don’t. Whatever pain, sadness, grief, hardship, woe it is we feel, it’s ours, and ours alone. It’s valid by the very nature that it exists. Is it selfish? Maybe, yes. So then you need to find a better way to deal with it. It must be prioritized against others’ needs sometimes, but it can never be disregarded.
I’ve been prioritizing the Guy’s needs in a lot of ways, and it’s beginning to wear thin – not because I don’t want to make him a priority, but because I’m just getting a little worn out, I guess. It’s different, right? Normally in relationships you can be more spontaneous. You can call them up and say, “Hey, can I get me a little somethin’somethin’?” You pop in, get what you need, have that quick, nice visit, and life is good. Or sometimes it’s 10 or 11 and you’re thinking, “Yeah, going to bed alone tonight? That sucks. I’m dialin’ up some love,” and you get your ass into their bed as quick as you can.
We can’t do that. I’m the one that has to go to him for anything spontaneous (which iis to say not at all), and really, late nights? Just not happening much at all when we’re together, never mind when we’re apart.
Injuries change relationships. There’s no getting around it. I understand injuries far too well, having spent much of four years in chronic pain earlier this decade, so I hold no grudges against my guy. He’s had a bad stretch. Soon, we’ll know if we’re into phase two. Waiting, though, from now until Tuesday is going to be fucking killer. I really, really want to know what our future holds. Regular sex? Score. Going out on the town? Score. Somewhere down the road, a real walk where we can hold hands? Score, score, score.
As of tonight, suspense. Nothingness. No clue. I’m scared of a bad prognosis, but I really, really doubt there’ll be one. It’s the possibility, however small, though, that’s the terrifying thing. There’s nothing that can be done but wait. And it’s not four days – it’s four days on top of nearly six weeks.
But he’s a fine man, and worth a wait. It’s because he’s a fine man that I’m getting so tired of waiting, though. I really, really want to enjoy him at his best, but we’re all adults and sometimes there’s just no fucking hiding from reality. It’s going to be a while, one way or the other, but the other’s just so much less desirable, that’s all.
Still, being in those arms again sometime very soon would be a good, good thing. And the suspense will be over soon, thank god.

It's The End of the World As We Know It…

And I feel fine.
Despite that, life, as we know it, will never be the same again. Scientists have made water run uphill. Yes, Chicken Little, that is indeed the sky you see falling. Damn you, Gravity!
Even before seeing that, I was having a strange day. For what else can you call a Monday spring morning with rocketing gusts of wind, a bacon & tomato sammich for brekkie, while watching the Godfather?
Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.
Which is to say, life is about practicalities. How do you manage, though, when even the practical becomes unlikely?
My guy proclaims that he has been a cripple now for five weeks.* I feel for him, yet there’s pretty much nothing I can do. If I help too much, he’s left feeling useless. If I do too little, he’ll think I’ve changed. It’s a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” sort of situation, and I have a hard time straddling that really persnickety line. Such is life.
There comes a time in every injury-rehabber’s life, this breaking point. Just when you think you’re never going to improve, things change rapidly. Before the progress, though, comes a period of unknowing, and there’s little more frustrating than that of just not knowing where you stand.
For those around the injured person, it’s difficult. You either can’t fathom what they’re going through (and most underestimate the amount of adversity a serious injury brings with it), or you can relate too well, which can sometimes be frustrating for the injured person, since they’re going through so much that your easy ability to relate is almost demeaning to their present adversities.
The Guy and I have discussed bondage off and on since we began dating. I had plans to tie the boy up much sooner than I have, but I began thinking realistically. It dawned on me that he’d been badly hurt, was on too many painkillers that had some sexual side effects, and all that, and I knew that, on the one hand, being tied up and pleasured would be perfect for him because he’d not have to exert himself and could simply enjoy the moment, but on the other hand, I knew he couldn’t return the favour and my kindness might wind up psychologically backfiring. So, I decided to postpone it.
This past week, I thought we might be at a point where I could tie the Guy up and just have him enjoy the experience now. Well, he did, absolutely, and I loved being able to do that for him, ‘cos that’s what it’s about, but… I’m a kind girl and I tend to be generous, and the Guy matches me well in those regards. I’m pretty sure there’s nothing he’d like to do more than rock my world in response to me rocking his, but then there’s reality. It’s just not quite that time, he can’t. I knew this when I tied him up, and I know it now.
That doesn’t make it any easier for either party. It’s frustrating when you really care about someone to any degree yet can’t show them the affection you’d like to exhibit, all because either you or they happen to be limited by physical realities.
There are things I can’t do that well right now, sexually, just because of injuries I have from over the last four years thanks to a small assortment of serious accidents. Giving head ain’t what it used to be – I can do maybe five or so minutes at a time before I get serious neck cramping and headaches, with my jaw locking up randomly for the next day or so. Doing the cowgirl ride, on top, makes my right knee go all wonky and every time I try it, my kneecap begins sliding off-base and my tendons snap like silly. These things piss me off, and I can’t even begin to understand what frustration the Guy must be having these days. He is a romantic, after all.
Don’t get me wrong, we’ve had some pretty awesome moments when both of us have been functioning in good form. I just know there’d be more of them if we were both at the top of our game more often. In fact, our on-the-town budget might dwindle drastically if full-on sex and all its trappings were on the menu every night.
Fortunately, I have to say that my sex drive’s at a really low point right now. Mentally, I want to go at it like wild bunnies in mating season with the Guy. I’m all about the thumpin’, you know. ‘Specially with him, but… Then there’s reality.
I’ve been doing battle with estrogen in one form or another for many months now. I had this near-insane reaction to an older birth control pill (Marvelon) that has a high estrogen content last October. Went into this black-as-hell depression and nothing but nothing could yank me out of it. You can see some evidence of it in October, 2005’s postings in the archive. I tried to keep most of it private, and maybe my other blog has more personal postings in it, but boy, it was one of the darkest periods I’ve ever experienced.
At the start of my next pill cycle, I switched to Alesse, a lower-dose pill. And now, well, my mood’s better, but my sex drive isn’t what it used to be. In fact, it hasn’t been for quite some time.
I got a lot of new readers earlier this year, in Feb/March, as a result of a series I began on masturbation. What you probably don’t know is that I don’t think I masturbated once during that series. I’ve been a little bothered by this unSteffness of mine for a while, but didn’t really know the extent of it until I got involved with the Guy.
It’s interesting, knowing the extent of your arousal intellectually and emotionally with someone, and not being interested in displaying it, or even able to do so, sometimes. Now, keep in mind, I have a high sex drive. As a chick, I probably have as high a sex drive as you can have without being addicted to sex. (Yes, it’s a real addiction.) So, perhaps having a little of the sex drive diminish isn’t such a bad thing. I’m not too concerned about that. I’m still pretty damned feisty from time to time, and probably still more than the Guy needs just now. At least he knows that when he’s ready, I’m willing, and that’s a start.
What I am concerned about, however, is the lack of sensation I’ve discovered I have.
It’s one thing to be able to masturbate yourself to orgasm… you lose a little sensation and you just dismiss it as getting disenchanted by the thought of having to take yourself to orgasm solo yet again. Like one reader wrote to me once, it’s like drinking water to eliminate a hunger. It’s not exactly a model solution.
When your lover, though, knows their shit and you just can’t feel like you ought to feel, like you know you should feel, you begin to realize it’s not them, it’s you, and that’s as frustrating as hell, too.
Next cycle, though, I begin yet another new birth control pill. Hopefully I’ll be a little less emotional some of the time, and hopefully my sexual sensitivity gets back to what it used to be, and hey, a little more drive might not hurt, but given the present scenario, I could wait a month or two for that.
So, the sky’s falling, water’s running uphill, my sex drive’s diminished, and the Guy’s having a rough week of it. What else is new? Life goes on. Storms seem the longest when you’re in them, and as time passes, you realize what a blip it was on the radar of things. When you’re being bombarded by gusts and howlers, it’s a little harder to see the big picture.
That’s why they made days only 24 hours long; having to get through anything longer would be inhumane on some days. As it is, it all starts anew tomorrow, and soon enough, another week’ll come along. It’s important to live in the moment, but it’s more important to realize time doesn’t stand still for anyone, least of all you.

*If you’re new-ish to the blog, a few weeks after we met, the Guy had a mishap and broke his right leg in three places above the ankle. Two intense surgeries were done to insert titanium plates and far too many screws, and he’s been on crutches ever since. Next week we find out finally if his bones have been correctly knitting, but he’s had no cast since week three, and can see the “monstrosity” he claims his foot/leg has become — covered in scars, bruising, and the like. If he gets the a-okay from the doc, he can finally begin putting pressure/weight on that leg. As of today, it requires great care and protection to keep it on the healing path. Frustrating for its owner, indeed.