Sunday, February 26, 2012


As in half way through the pain management program at the Health Region's Chronic Pain Clinic.

Friday was the end of week three, with three more to do.

I want to share a couple of observations. I think these are important.

1. Every morning, we have at least a couple of half-hour exercise activities. (We usually exercise for about half of that.) Some standing, some sitting, some on the floor. In addition to that, each of us has a personal exercise program — tailored to our needs. We're supposed to attend to that, too; some we'll do in class; some we do on our own.

The physiotherapists working with us noticed something Thursday, to which they drew attention. After only three weeks, we are noticeably more agile. A good thing. Believe me!

2. But it's going to take a lot more work. Most of us are crippled, at least in part, with muscle injuries. When muscles are injured, they don't give us much support. Which, in turn, leads to either pain or more pain.

The goal, in part, is to treat pain by getting muscles working, so they can support our bodies and decrease pain. As I mentioned, we're making progress.

Nonetheless, it takes about 12 weeks to heal and reorganized injured muscles. To re-align the fibres they way they're supposed to be. We've done only three weeks so far. Lots more work to do. But I'll tell you, this is really tiring work. When I get home for lunch, I'm beat!

§      §      §

It's been trying to snow all weekend, in the Great White North (which is actually the Grungy Brown North this year).

When it's winter in the city
And streets are brown and gritty
Then the city's not so pretty
As you know.

We got warning of a major storm planning to blow in yesterday (Saturday) morning. I could see the heavy clouds hanging over the city. And then . . . and then the snow didn't some. No matter how hard those clouds wanted to snow, t h e y   j u s t   c o u l d n ' t   d o   i t . So, instead of the six inches we were expecting, we got about one. Snowdust blowing around. Sheesh! Much sound and fury, signifying nothing, as "Bill the Bard" Shakespeare put it. Meaning we're going to have a dry spring for seeding crops. Not an auspicious start. Not a good thing at all.

Blessings and Bear hugs, friends.

Cowboy one: Ya wanna got to the theatre tonight and see the moving pictures?
Cowboy two: What's showing?
Cowboy one: It's supposed to be a pretty good Eastern.

That was for the Academy Awards, which doesn't seem to have a category for Easterns. Awards show was held last night (in case you missed it, like I did). Frankly, Scarlet, I'd rather be blogging.


The Broad said...

Well done for working so hard and here's hoping for more and more healing in the weeks to come. It is such a challenge to cope with chronic pain and you have my very best wishes.

I find awards ceremonies of all kinds increasingly boring -- in the UK it's only on Sky television, which we do not subscribe to, so it's not a choice to stay up all night and watch anyway! So in the morning it's all done and and the results reported in less than 5 minutes!

Furtheron said...

Good stuff on the pain recovery front - good luck and keep on with it. Sounds tough but I'm sure it'll be worth it.

Always seems funny to me that the biggest award shows are for the industries that really could do with less not more razmatazz... hmm inspiration for a blog I think...

The Blog Fodder said...

Academy Awards were last night? Oh.
Glad to hear you are coming along with the program. 12 weeks means 6 weeks on your own? Not as much fun and so not as easy as working with a group. Misery loving company and all.

Rosaria Williams said...

Bear, I hear streaks of hope here!

Building muscles can only help. I'm taking Tai Chi to strengthen my knees; yeah, they have been giving me trouble off and on and supposedly Tai Chi will help me take care of them and everything else.

Rob-bear said...

Whoa! What's this? A new comment format from Blogger? Um, OK, I guess.

® The Broad: Thanks for the support. I just hope the light at the end of the tunnel isn't a train coming at me.

Awards ceremonies. Show-biz being show-biz. Where's the news in that?

® Furtheron: Thanks also for the support.

I'm with you on the award show bits. Go, man, go!

® Blog Fodder: Yup, who was on last night. Really!

As for getting better on my own, we're encouraged to develop a pattern which works for us, individually. I've developed my process. I'm ready to get on to it. Besides, Janet wants to get on it with me. I won't be alone.

® rosaria: Not just streaks, the whole darned storm is brewing up.

Interesting that you mention Ti Chi. We've been practising some of that along with a video. Next week, which is our "practice at home" week, I'm going to look for a group which is doing that. In the summer, one group meets in the park across the river from us. Ti Chi is very thoughtful and guided in its patterns, but so fluid and seemingly so gentle. It has the kind of disciplined movement that I admire. And it actually is a martial art.

ReformingGeek said...

Oh, that poor cloud. Sigh.

Oh, and I'm glad Bear is more agile. Keep it up and you'll be back to climbing trees in no time.

As for the Oscars, I gave up years ago. Zzzzzz.

Crystal Pistol said...

I did not watch the academy awards either. I only watch the Fashion Blooper shows that come out later. Very entertaining. :)

Rob-bear said...

® ReformingGeek: Bear climbing trees. "Up in the air" Bear?

That would terrify my family, except (perhaps) for the grandchildren. And they would all say how silly (OK, stupid) I am.

A Bear's life is not an easy one, especially in an urban setting. Fortunately, I can be both urban and urbane.

® Crystal Pistol: Thanks for coming to visit. I often think of television as endless commercials interrupted by bad programming. Sigh.

Diana said...

I didn't watch the Awards. My husband and I rented "Puss and Boots", very cute movie!
I'm proud of you for working so hard Bear. I understand all too well about working through he pain. I hope and pray that it pays off in the long run as it has for me. Different circumstance but painful none the less.
Ah, I remember those days years ago living in Chicago. The beautiful snowy scenes and then it would turn into black snow after the plowing and lack of fresh cover. We don't have much of that here. Snow that is. If we've had two inches this year, I'd be surprised!
Keep up the good work Bear. I think you deserve a nap!!
Love Di ♥

Manzanita said...

Dear Friend,
I love movies but boy, am I out of it. I didn't see ONE of the movies on the Oscars. And I live 2 blocks from a theater.

I can feel the pain of your exercises. Really. I had been ill a year and half and did zip exercise. Now I'm trying to exercise again. You know that yoga form where you sit on the floor, bend one knee, cross the other leg over the bent knee and twist upper body toward the back. I couldn't get close to crossing my knee while screaming (inside) and burning with pain. I didn't give up and now, one month later, I CAN DO IT. It still burns a little but I can hold it for 2 min. Hang in there.

Constipated clouds, huh?

I like your comment on my blog. I've never read any of Atwood. I ordered the handmaid one. Thanks

potsoc said...

Hang in there.
Paul Costopoulos

Rob-bear said...

® Diana: Thanks for the support. I keep working at it. Some things are going well. Others are a bit more — how should I say — questionable. Slow progress. Annoying and frustrating.

I can see from your movie choice that you and your husband are definitely in your second childhoods. Nothing wrong with that.

As for dirty snow, enough said.

® Manzanita: Sorry to hear that Hollywood is not catering to your tastes when it comes to movies. Terrible oversight; horrid collective lack of wisdom on their part. Condolences.

Well done on the yoga. My wife used to teach that, but I never really developed a feeling for it. Tai Chi, with it's continuing flow and precision of movement (as with Yoga) is appealing. Good luck with your activity. Sounds good!

Clouds; not so much constipated as uncertain.

And I hope Margaret's The Handmaid's Tale doesn't scare you too much.

Rob-bear said...

® potsoc: Bear is not so much hanging in as improving.

For a bear hanging in, you need to see an older post.


Is your new house easier to get in and out of? And is it closer to your rehab?

I admire your dedication. Some people (like me) would rather sit and moan than WORK at getting better. I've got a whole lot of 'give up' in me.

Rob-bear said...

® Beau's Mom: The apartment is about the same as the house we had, in terms of getting in and out. If I wanted to be really lazy, I could take an elevator for part or most of the process, but I refuse to be entirely that lazy.

And as for there being "a whole lot of 'give up' in [you]," Bear is having trouble believing that. Bear would say the opposite. (OK, Bear actually knows some things, thought he doesn't usually let on.)

About Last Weekend said...

Isn't it amazing how just half an hour of exercise can limber you up and make you feel (slightly) better? This makes me feel I should be so much happier with my life and the fact I have no health issues...

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

I am so glad to hear that you are working so hard in this program. It sounds like you are making progress! I am amazed at how "they know" just how to direct and prod to get muscles working again.

Keep us posted on your ongoing progress, Bear.


cheshire wife said...

Pleased to read that you are seeing/feeling results even though you are only half way through the course.

Rob-bear said...

® About Last Weekend: Right you are, Jody. But then, you're still quite young, despite having four kids. (I don't believe they're as old as you claim they are; couldn't possibly be, given your age.)

My challenges come for a number of injuries which were treated, but never healed properly. So I'm trying to "catch up" on the healing business, though that will never happen completely.

® Genie -- Paris and Beyond: They do indeed, know. And, armed with that knowlededge, they know how to torture us. Exquisitely.

® cheshire wife: I am making progress. I think I'll set up my own pain management school when this is over. That project is already taking shape (inside my head).

Nancy said...

I do hope you feel better after all of this hard work. There is nothing worse than chronic pain.

ain't for city gals said...

As "they" say...If it was easy everyone would be doing it! Keep up the hard will be worth it after all said and done! That is why I keep jogging..we have to keep trying.

Margie said...

Sending healing thoughts.
Thanks for the visit.

About Last Weekend said...

Just to say have a good (pain free) weekend!

Rob-bear said...

® Nancy: You're right; chronic pain is a pain, indeed. And I've had to live with it for a long time. But things are improving. Not marathons or 100 yard dashes this spring, but maybe back on to my bicycle.

Thanks for the kind wishes.

® Margie: Welcome to the Bear's "Chrome" blog. Thanks you so much for stopping by.

When I first saw your name, I though, "What is my daughter doing here?" Then I realized it was you. Which was on a par with hearing from our Margie.

Hope your wonderful Rose is doing well.

® About Last Weekend: Thanks for the good wishes, Jody. Pain-free weekend isn't about to happen. Better mobility is more likely, so I'll enjoy that.

Rob-bear said...

® ain't for city girls: So great to see you back in the blogsphere. Thanks for visiting.

I know you've got a lot of your dad on your mind. And having lost both of my parents, I understand something of what that involves.

Blessings and Bear hugs.

susan said...

Snowless winters in this hemisphere are never a good thing. Let's hope you get some decent rain now March has arrived.

Rob-bear said...

® susan: Yes; a decent rain in March would be helpful. And in April. And in June.

Last summer, it was so dry out here that a farmer saw two trees fighting over a dog.

Chatty Crone said...

You know people always talk about exercise, but for us ah more mature people we need stretching too! sandie

Rob-bear said...

® Chatty Crone: Sandi, the warm-up exercises (stretches) are part of the exercise, not independent of it. The important thing is not to push oneself into trying to exercise like a 20-year-old or a 40-year-old when one is more "mature" than that.

You know, maybe I'll blog more about this.

Thanks for getting me started.