Monday, April 16, 2012

Finding A Balance

Some days the desire for me to write is not particularly strong.  Today was one of those days and I had no plans to write this entry.   But then something struck me and I decided to go ahead and write.  This might not be my best written entry as I just feel my writing is off today, but there is something for me to convey.

I have come to notice that often my blog entries go back and forth between feeling positive/upbeat and feeling negative and downtrodden.  I had to ask myself - what's the deal Jerry?  What direction are you really moving?  Are things good or are they bad?  There is a lot here for me to ponder and figure out in this realm.  The bottom line is that I hope to find a better balance.  In an entry that I wrote last week (I think it was last week anyway) I talked about how I tend to pump up the positive feelings to put into my blog.  In general the feelings that are running through me are more negative than I am letting on by what I write.

 My blog entry from Saturday was honest in the upbeat and positive feeling that I was experiencing.  There was nothing I needed to do on Saturday to enhance the way I was feeling to put in the blog.  My emotions were definitely positive and I was in a good mood.  Even though it was a Saturday night and I was at home I was in a really good mood.  It is very interesting what I feel moving forward from this past Saturday.  Getting the tattoo was some form of giant release of pent up negative emotions.  I have been in a state of feeling down trodden, depressed and anxious for so long that moving away from those feelings without a pill, without alcohol or without having a girlfriend took me by surprise.  It was like the tattoo added something to my emotions that has been missing for so long.  I can't really explain it, but getting that tattoo filled in the hole in my soul that has been dragging me down for so long.

All of this must sound extremely strange I am sure.  But then again if you have been reading this blog for any period of time, I am quite sure you are used to me writing things that sound quite strange.  Even today the strength of the positive feelings that are emanating from me is unusual given the amount of bad news that I received today.

The bad news that I received today was concerning my back.  This morning I had an appointment with yet another neurosurgeon.  This is the third neurosurgeon I have seen since I started on this odyssey with my back injury in November.  He is part of a practice at Swedish Hospital and he came strongly recommended by my sister-in-law.  For those of you who don't live in the Denver area, Swedish Hospital is one of the larger hospitals in the area.  It is probably 2 - 3 times the size of Littleton Adventist Hospital where I had the first 2 surgeries on my back.  It is like I am moving up a chain and I am going to a bigger hospital that has more specialty doctors, better equipment and performs more procedures.  Hopefully I will not have to go to an even bigger hospital!

The news I received was that short of some kind of a miracle the only way I will get out of the pain I am experiencing is to undergo a third surgery.  As any one can imagine this is not the news I wanted to hear.  On top of that, I will have to undergo 10 more weeks of recovery and rehab - quite possibly losing yet another summer hiking/climbing season.  There are several choices that I have to make concerning all of this.  The first is how quickly I decide to move forward with this surgery.  I could potentially just hold off for a while and see what happens.  Maybe I won't have a miracle, but perhaps my pains will go down enough so I am not in such high levels of pain.  The next question is whether I have the surgeon who operated on me the previous two times do this surgery or whether I have the surgeon who I consulted with today do the surgery.

When I got the news this morning it clearly upset me.  As I drove home I kept asking myself why does this stuff continue to happen?  Why can't I get this issue resolved?  But instead of going into a complete pity party I decided to pull myself up by the boot straps and just say "oh well".  Things could certainly be a lot worse.  Why allow my mind and emotions to make the situation worse by having a giant pity party for myself?

Clearly I have some thinking to do about what choices I am going to make concerning my back.  I'll do that thinking over the next several days and get the show on the road in whichever direction I am going to go by the end of the week.

I really think the time has come in which I will find the balance of emotions in my life.  The key thing that this will mean for me is leaving the anxiety, depression and unhappiness behind me and living life on a much more even keel.  Getting my tattoo was at the least a catalyst to move my mental state in this different direction.  There might even be more to it than that in the fact that the tattoo represents closure on several difficult chapters in my life.  Whatever it truly is, I know my owl (the tattoo) that sits on my shoulder will be there for the rest of my life.  He is now my guardian and I will never be alone again.

 (I am not 100% sure I am going to do it, but I do have an idea of a tattoo for my left arm!)

Wow - I never expected to write this much when I started writing this after dinner.  (Especially since the keyboard on my laptop wasn't working correctly.  When the P key was hit, the letters, O, I, K, L, O would appear on the screen.  To resolve the issue I had to rip half the keyboard off letter by letter and get all the dust and grime out from under the keys.  I've had this laptop for over 2 years now and it is starting to show the wear and tear I put my computers through.)

I hope everyone's week is off to a good start!

Thanks and peace to all! ~J.


Johanna said...

Don't beat yourself up too much about your emotional ups and downs. Seriously, you have a lot of really hard things going on in your life. You've lost a lot over the past few years. Just dealing with the trauma of losing your wife through such a terrible illness, trying to raise your son alone, trying to find someone to love again and all that goes along with that, losing your ability to do the kinds of activities you enjoy and to top it all off - having to endure pain and surgeries...again. It's okay to write what you're feeling. It's okay to feel down one day and exultant the next. I understand the longing you have to want your life on a more even keel and I sincerely hope that that happens for you, but if it doesn't, then by all means, express it if that helps you feel a little better. I wish I could be as free as you are with expressing myself, but I can't as long as people I know are reading my blog. At one time I tried having two blogs, one to be more like a journal and I too, discovered, that on my 'journal' blog, all my negative and real stuff was coming out and on my other blog - my more positive. I started seeing my blogs as bi-polar and decided to put them back together and have one.

Always praying for you, Jerry.

p.s. that's one BIG tattoo. But very pretty.

Jerry Kromer said...

Johanna - Thank you for your kind words. I always appreciate the comments that you leave. And you're right it is a BIG tattoo. I think I have amazed a lot of people in the fact that I actually went through and did it!

Anonymous said... each there own. So I guess if your son wants to tattoo his body you are all right with that? I fell like tattoo's keep you from moving up in the work force and people look down on you. They are by no means macho to me and yours will not be an easy one to hide. Very nauseating to me.

Jerry Kromer said...

Anonymous - Yes, it is a personal choice to have a tattoo. The tattoo I have gotten is actually totally and completely concealed as long as I am wearing a shirt - even a short sleeve shirt conceals it all. So unless I am going without a shirt or wearing a tank top - which I never do, my tattoo will remain completely hidden - only me and my significant other will know it is there. As for my son and getting a tattoo - once he turns 18 he can pretty much do what he wants. If it comes to memorializing someone on his body through a tattoo I do approve of that. We have even talked about taking some of his mom's ashes and having them pressed into a diamond that we would then have turned into an ear ring for him. You are entitled to your opinion as is everyone. I am sorry that my tattoo upsets you so.