Today marks my one year anniversary of my surgery. This should be a joyful time. Instead, I find myself alone and isolated. One month before my surgery was scheduled, my wife advised me that we had come to an end. That definitely did not help my mindset going into surgery, but I dealt with it. I preoccupied myself with dotting t’s and crossing i’s to get ready for surgery. I was still working too. I had to set up FMLA, make sure all the insurance stuff was lined up. There was an awful lot to do.
During all of this, I continued to help on the farm. I still shoveled poop twice a day and made sure they had water and hay. I filled in on feeding when she had appointments. There was a lot to do on a farm every day. On weekends, when and if we opened, I would give my tours. I loved giving tours and sharing my knowledge of camelids and more specifically alpacas. That was probably the bright spot. I had chickens too for a while, but those were given away. I continued to do the work in all kinds of weather knowing that she already decided we were at an end.
This went on until the end of the year when she decided it was time. I had to start boxing up my belongings, find an apartment back in the city I was born in. I originally was looking to get a trailer in an over 55 village but that fell through as I was not able to afford the chattel loan. I had been approved many times for loans but when they found out it was for a trailer they backed out. The one who said they would do it wanted twice up front money and larger mortgage payment with shorter terms, which when added to the $550 HOA fee. So that fell through, so I looked back to the city of my birth and found an apartment. It is a townhouse setup with two bedrooms upstairs, one I use for my office. It is okay and I get to play with the neighbor’s dogs. I would have gotten a dog but they wanted an additional $1000 deposit to have one.
So on New Year’s Eve, we got the truck and filled it up. It was decided to move me that day. We got everything down to my apartment and got everything inside. We went back to spend my final New Year’s Eve at the farm. I was not fully there. My mind was a whirl. We played That’s What She Said and had our drinks. I slept in my bed one last time and then up in the morning, grabbed a few last things and was off.
It took quite a bit of adjustment to go from a farm with 27 alpacas, 3 dogs, my wife and step-son to just me. I did not sleep well. Of course, I am right on a major thoroughfare so that didn’t help. There was a bump on the street from a frost heave so any time a truck would go by they would make a loud noise. It has since been fixed so a little less noise. Of course, this meant that I am now cooking for one, so that was an adjustment too.
Further exacerbating the situation was the virus. I was just starting to get into finding places and planning on visiting new restaurants and having friends over, when this all hit. Now I am further isolated, only venturing out to the market. I was going for long walks and finally found my grandparent’s grave marker. I also walked cross town, almost retracing my steps from when I was a kid and walked from St. Patrick’s to my grandparent’s house. They had the cops out looking for me that day.
I have been doing quite a bit of walking but think I irritated an old injury from the days of alpaca wrangling, so my foot has been slightly swollen. If I press the spot where the alpaca kicked me, it is tender, so there might be a slight break that I irritated. I may have to see the doc when this all returns to some sort of normalcy. I probably irritated it that weekend I got in over 20,000 steps. The only pain I ever have is from a toe I broke in the service as it has some arthritis in it now, but other than that, my foot doesn’t hurt, just slight swelling. I have been keeping them up as best I could.
I don’t want this to sound all negative. There are many pluses. I joined a group and soon found myself going to their meetings in all three locations. They treat me like family and give me the love I need to feel. They check in on me most days to be sure I am okay.
I also had a long chat with my son. I hadn’t heard from him in a long time so that was nice, and it was a long back and forth rather than the short quick notes. I had a girl’s night with my daughter and our friend Emily a week or so ago. We got Chinese, had wine, and watched some Iliza Schlesinger for laughs. It ended up being a really fun night.
So in all of this there has been some positives. They are slowly opening things up. Though, I won’t be running out to restaurants any time soon. I may stick with takeout to see if there is a resurgence. I am 61 so considered in that vulnerable group despite not getting sick even from flu. I get to take advantage of those senior hours so I can get some rolls of TP! I never understood why people were hoarding TP. Ah well.
So, given this is my one year anniversary, I think I might treat myself to Chinese takeout later. For now, I have a few things to get done, so running out.
As always, my heart to your heart, one heart, one spirit. You are loved!
“Lady” Emma Morgaine Croft