note real honky skin tone at bottom right, and fake honky skin tone elsewhere.

wrist corset: note real honky skin tone at bottom right, and fake honky skin tone elsewhere.

prologue: if you’ve never heard of spoon theory, i recommend that you read up on it now.

i don’t remember where i first learned about spoon theory. i read a lot of blogs on a lot of different topics, and i’m pretty certain it came up on one of those cyber-sojourns. at any rate, i’ve been thinking about it on and off for over a year now: the variations on the analogy, its shortcomings, and its ability to capture an idea that can otherwise be difficult to grasp. however, it wasn’t until this morning, when i awoke to a wrist that was aching and a hand that was numb and weak, that i thought about it in terms of myself.

despite being held immobile by a brace all through the night, my right arm is not functioning as it should.

part of me lives in the moment. this part of me that has spent much of my life taking my health and mobility for granted, and thinks: “oh well, it’s not that bad… i’ll just wear the brace this morning, and try to rest today, and keep it warm, and maybe it’ll feel better by this evening.” as though this were a brief encounter with a virus or bacteria; as though i just need to keep going and have faith.

as of this morning, another part of me is suddenly looking at the big picture. this is on a different path, one that we haven’t yet tread: why is my hand/wrist/arm in such bad shape today? is it due to stress, cold, pressure, typing, cycling, sewing, using my mouse, petting the cat, drilling holes for new shelves, vacuuming my apartment, folding the laundry? how much of these things can i take and under what circumstances, before i need to stop and recover? and how much recovery time do i need in order to reach what level of functionality?

trees, forest.

i’m not scared so much as i’m unsure and not at all pleased at the idea of there being limits on my capabilities. at work, i have difficulty conveying my need to rest, partially because i don’t quite believe it myself. i can’t wear the brace all the time because it stresses the muscles in my upper arm, so there’s no physical reminder to myself or others. i need to set a timer, so that i stop and stretch and relax every 15 minutes. i need to make a wrist-warmer, because the cold makes everything worse. i need to find new hobbies, interests, and employment. i need to find a new acupuncturist.

i also need to make some inquiries at the university, because the cts-related claims that i made to my student health care plan were denied. it was bad enough having an ugly brace… but to have to pay for that privilege? no way!

can anybody suggest a category name that i can use for posts related to health, bodies, carpal tunnel syndrome, etc? i want it to be a word or two that completes the phrase: “a feral geographer is a(n)…”

everything i’ve come up with sounds kinda silly: embodied creature, physical entity, living being, animal, living machine. ideas?


10 responses to “spooning.

  1. ..is a collection of spoons. :)

  2. ha! that’s good. am mulling it over.

  3. No no, don’t do that. Keep pondering other ideas. :)

    • …spoon collector? i have to say, i find this idea rather charming, particularly because it reminds me of old ladies’ commemorative spoon collections. i like the thought of a first-time visitor to my blog thinking that i’m that sort of girl… because it’s sooooooo far from the truth.

  4. I.. have a spoon collection. It’s not an active one – I stopped when I was about 9 – but it sits here in my office in a small box. I don’t know any little old ladies who’d like to take it off of my hands! :)

    Don’t tell anyone, ok? Heh.

    • you realize now that i’m going to have to start sending you spoons??? mwah ha ha!!!

      my lover suggested “…human”, which i like, though i might prefer to contextualize it with “…human animal”. or “…mammal”. “…ape”?

  5. I understand the spoon thing all too well these days.

  6. No WAY. I’m totally sending YOU spoons. In fact, I’ll package up the whole box this afternoon… and, aw, crap, I probably can’t just slap a label on it saying, “Please deliver to “Feral Geographer” c/o WordPress” can I?


    • sometimes, i would LOVE it if the internet worked that way.
      other days, i’m dead relieved that it doesn’t.

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