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ARE YOU KIDDING ME?: Doing what you’re told

Lesley Crewe
Lesley Crewe

Is there anything worse than being told something you don’t want to hear? It doesn’t matter if it’s good for you or not. If you don’t like what someone is telling you, you resent the heck out of it.

After an entire winter and spring of walking every day from 6 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. down my laneway, in my quest for better health, I now have to stop. A physiotherapist told me that.

Hubby told me, too, but I never listen to him because I don’t want him to be right. That would make me wrong, and we can’t have that.

I’m assuming this isn’t going to be the case forever, but it feels like it. When you’re on a roll, you need to keep your momentum going. It’s too easy to fall back into your slovenly ways.

Take today, for example. It’s glorious out and I’m stuck inside, gaining weight as we speak. I’ve got it in my head that if I don’t keep moving, everything I put in my mouth will be plastered on my hips in a matter of minutes, so this chair I’m sitting in might as well be electric because I’m killing myself if I don’t keep moving.

But my right foot has had enough of my foolishness and wants me to slow down. I’ve got something I can’t pronounce and my foot has got elastic tape on it and the physiotherapist gave me a bunch of exercises and a tiny bungee-jumping cord to wrap around my legs to create tension in the quest for strengthening some obscure butt muscle.

She told me not to walk this week, and when I asked her if I could continue spring cleaning my house on a ladder, she frowned, so, apparently, that activity is off the table as well. Now I’m sitting in my house, twiddling my thumbs, because of my stupid right foot.

I have things to do, places to go, bungalows to clean, and gardens to plant (not really, I make hubby do that since I kill plants by just glancing at them), but you get my drift.

It’s amazing when you hear the word “no”. It’s like you’re two again and you want to throw a tantrum. It doesn’t matter if this course of action will help you in the long-run, it’s not what you want to do now.

I have a terrible feeling she’s going to tell me that if I want to continue to walk, I’m going to have to do it in increments of 30 minutes at a time. To space it out over the whole day, which means walking in the afternoon and evening too. Just in time for the black flies to really rev their motors. When you walk very early in the morning, you can sometimes get away with it, because they are usually still in bed.

But at this age, my energy starts to run out just after lunch, so walking 7.5 kilometres all at once at 6 a.m. is my way of staving off that inevitable slump.

I’m missing being outdoors, listening to the birds, feeling the wind and sun on my face. But to do that in Cape Breton, you have to keep moving. You can’t sit in a lounge chair, unless you have a bug jacket on, and that defeats the purpose.

I know in the scheme of things this isn’t the end of the world, but I was pretty proud of my marching ways. I’ve lost 45 pounds since January and in my mind, I was going to keep walking until I lost 40 more and have it all gone by Christmas, but this hiccup is laying waste to those plans.

And isn’t that life in a nutshell? You think you have it all figured out, as you smugly go about your day, and then the pain starts, slowly at first, but it becomes more insistent and starts to tap you on the shoulder, or foot in my case.

“Excuse me? Excuse me? You better start paying attention to me, girlie. You’re not as smart as you think you are.”

Hubby is at the door when I come home from the physio clinic.

“How did it go? What did she say?”

I don’t answer.

“I was right, wasn’t I?”

I don’t look at him.

He gives me a big smirk.

Lesley Crewe is a writer living in, and loving, Cape Breton. These are the meandering musings of a bored housewife whose ungrateful kids left her alone with a retired husband. Since all her pets have now died, she's very cranky. Her 11th book, Are You Kidding Me?! Chronicles of an Ordinary Life, (a collection of her various columns over the past twenty years), will be available in book stores in September 2019.

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