keyboard shortcut bulletin board, by arvind grover on Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons
keyboard shortcut bulletin board, by arvind grover on Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons

Whoa. Several days of silence here. I’ll eke this out right before I crash for the night. Thank you for not worrying about me. I mean, I hope you haven’t been. This is much more like me, not on steroids – letting a few days slip past before posting or replying to emails or getting things done. I have some pages in the printer that I sent to print three days ago. I haven’t looked at them yet. Meantime, today I somehow crammed in about three things I needed to do, right before picking up the kids from school at 3. If I hadn’t spent two hours in bed with the AC cranked, recovering from my grocery shopping trip on a very humid day, I might not have had to hurry.

J and Young J returned from the school camping trip today, happy and unscathed and unrained on and not a tick on them. Young J lost neither his good hat nor his water bottle. (But I was glad J was there to keep tabs on this stuff. And the teachers appreciated his help, too.)

Next week is the last week of school. Then we leave immediately for a trip to see some very tall peaks. There is a strong possibility of horseback riding, so today I placed a call to Nurse Practitioner R to see whether the proscription on my doing any activity involving bouncing is lifted yet. After she ascertained that it was horseback riding, not skydiving, I was planning to do (I guess they rule nothing out with me, ever since I made the bold move of eating avocado when I was about to develop a rip-roaring case of colitis), she said to do what I like if I’m feeling up to it.

I’m hoping this time around I get a super mellow horse, but prior experience tells me it may not happen. I’ve been horseback riding about seven or eight times, maybe ten, tops. So I’m not a maven, but not totally new at it. I’ve in the past managed to: get the horse who’s rearing back on its hind legs in the stall and is named “Feisty”; get the horse who knows a shortcut none of the other horses would dare take, which maybe pins my leg between its body and a tree for a short while; have my stirrup somehow come undone, halting the whole group, on a steep descent in Simi Valley; or get the horse who gets a little too close to the edge of a cliff on a very sandy trail, while we descend from a mesa in Chile. I wish I were making all this up. It’s extreme sports kind of stuff, and I am decidedly not an extreme sports person. Maybe it’s a vibe I give off to horses. Maybe they see me approach and know I am a  person to mess with. Anyhow, I’m hoping the hypothetical Colorado horses are not in on this vibe. The horse in 2001 who escorted me across a lava field in Iceland in February’s freezing rain did not misbehave. (Maybe it was too cold to?)

Anyhow, this week I trained for being outside my comfort zone when I went to Young J’s last day of soccer class festivities. There were four or five moms there, two little brothers (including Young A, who sat clutching his backpack and refused to participate). We played “Clean Your Room,” which involves making sure all the balls wind up on the opposite side of the room to where you are. We played three rounds of tug of war (moms vs. sons, we let them win). And finally, we played a game of soccer. I am not a sporty person. Never have been. I managed to make a goal for the moms’ team because the ball rebounded off my shin into the goal, and we were playing in a very small space. Did I mention I’d had a pretty bad headache going into all this? That there was pop music playing to pump us up? And that the way the sound bounces off the walls of the gym made me feel like my very head was melting off? It was 77 degrees in the gym, according to the thermostat, which I lowered in the hopes some unseen source of ventilation might kick in. I truly felt like I survived that hour, way more than I feel like I survived brain surgery. (Brain surgery was actually way more relaxing, and the musical accompaniment was Satie.) Young J was so happy to have me there, so for his sake, I was glad to suffer. A horse in Colorado should be no problem, compared to that. As long as its name is not “Feisty.”

I met my new shrink this week. I really liked her, but she doesn’t take our insurance. According to my calculations, I’ll have to see her 21 times before our out of network deductible is met and I see any kind of reimbursement at all. So I’ll have to see how this works out. On the plus side, she had me fill out two forms, one screening for depression (I decidedly don’t have) and one screening for bipolar disorder (I definitely do have… when I’m on Decadron!). I filled out the bipolar questionnaire with my recent steroid experience, and then quickly explained as she looked through it that none of what I had marked is true for me normally. She did tell me I seemed like I had things together, which is so nice to hear from someone officially certified to tell you so. Still, I think I can still benefit from talking with her – there are a number of things in her background which make it a good fit. I hope to find some work soon to finance the head shrinkage. I’m not looking super aggressively, and certainly not looking for a daily commute type job just yet. It sure would be nice to have some more translation work fall in my lap. It’s all about where you place your lap, I suppose.

I’m looking forward to a classic summer weekend – swimming pool, picnic, BBQ. The only thing is, I’ll be stuck in the shade the whole time, unless the elusive gift of cloud cover without rain lets me emerge from the shadows. I’m feeling lucky. It could happen.

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