Picture of a judge's wigThis Is Not A BLOG!Picture of a judge's wig

Date: 06/08/16

"Slow Down, You Move Too Fast"

I don't seem to have done myself any favours with regard to my recovery.

I had begun to think that things were moving on quite satisfactorily, with having the odd really good day, more average days and fewer bad ones.

The last few days have, however, tended to disabuse me of that view. On Wednesday afternoon, I took a repeat prescription to the doctor's surgery. It was a walk of about 400 yards all told, I took my time (with the walking-stick more of an accessory than a necessity) and I felt fine afterwards.

The three days since have, by contrast, been something of a trial, with the familiar wooziness and glaring light accompanied by (or perhaps caused by) some low blood-pressure readings with the systolic dipping below 100. I simply don't seem to have the facility to recover, recharge or recuperate at the moment. I think that I have pushed myself too far, too soon. And I think I know why.

Because the surgeons hadn't had to open up the canteen of cutlery to do what they did to me, the thought must have lodged in my mind that it was therefore not such a big deal. But now further - and more realistic - consideration has led me to revise my view. Irrespective of which route was taken, heart surgery is a pretty major 'procedure' to have done on one, and recovery from it is always going to be lengthy. In addition to which, there is the issue of recovering from the quite obviously wretched state I was in for months (years, even) beforehand.

So there's clearly a long way to go, and I have decided now to retreat as much as I can bear back towards something like full invalid status for the time being, as frustrating as it is, and that things will take as long as they take.

I have been aided in my attempts at creative relaxtion by my friend and colleague Siān who kindly provided a jigsaw of the Forum in Rome for my amusement. I hadn't done a jigsaw for thirty-odd years, and going at it for an hour or so at a time over five or six days at least got me away from the screen, although I had a nasty feeling for a long while that some of the 500 pieces may not have been there. I had terrible trouble finding the piece with the wheelie-bin on it (it's a picture of the Forum as it is under the process of conservation rather than how it may have been in its pomp) (the red circle lower left on the picture below), and one piece which was mostly sky but had a tiny part of the masonry of the Forum columns in the lower-left corner of it (marked with the green circle upper right):

Photo of a completed jigsaw

I couldn't for the life of me find it even after I'd separated out all the pieces with sky on them, and it was only when I was assembling the sky at the very end that I found it. It's almost pathetic the feeling of triumph one gets when the final piece slots into place.

I also had a wonderful visit yesterday evening from my dear friends Tez and Wendy (who were, long-time readers may recall, instrumental - sorry! - in providing me with one of the nights of my life several years ago), which brightened things up beyond expression.

So here I am, doing what little I can with what little I have and hoping that things will take a little bit of an upswing before too long (Dr. Dua, when we discussed my 'procedure' over the pea soup was only willing to give a timescale for the nearest thing to a full recovery in terms of months rather than weeks). I'm still here...