On being a crock

I have done something to my back. I have never had back trouble and Ian often has. I hope I have been sympathetic and supportive when he has struggled with putting on socks and has had a spine curved like a banana but I suspect I might have combined sympathy with too sharp a sense of how funny it looks. Well I have my comeuppance now.

This morning I rolled about on my back like a stranded beetle trying to work out how to get up. I finally achieved an inelegant slide over the side and began the slow hobble to the bathroom. As I approached the full length mirror I saw a bent over crone, an older version of my mother. Now my mother is a good looking and interesting woman and turning into her holds no fears but she is seventy four and this woman looked about eighty. I've straightened up now after four hours or so but it was a bit of shock.

I find this quite a lot since I turned fifty. I can still turn out quite well with a decent haircut and some makeup and heels so on a good day after loads of sleep and through a light veil I can look ten years younger. However if I am feeling under the weather I can easily look ten years older. I feel I slide about between fortyish and sixtyish, madly disconcerting. I suspect it is generally part of getting older because I see Ian doing it a bit too when he is tired but his sliding scale seems a more manageable ten years or so.

I'd love to garden but bending over seems impossible unless I have a small crane to lift me up again so I have been wandering about with my camera. Walking seems better than sitting and outside is always better than in. The sun is shining and the hens are clucking, the cats are sunning themselves on the flags. Keep away from the mirror for a day or two and count your blessings.


  1. Looks like a lovely day over there - we have freezing fog. Still -2 at lunchtime. Brrr.
    Hope you can find an osteopath - I promise you it will be worth a try. It doesn't work for every back pain nor for everybody, but your pain sounds like mine (can't straighten up, hobbling, sitting down painful..., and it works for me.

  2. So sorry your back is giving you fits. Hope it's better soon.

    On the other hand, the pictures are lovely. I especially like the birds at the feeder.

  3. Lovely flowers - so cheering seeing a splash of colour. Beautiful day here too after a freezing start.

    Know what you mean about seeing your mother in the mirror - it's kind of inevitable and really not toooo bad is it? Just I never imagined it actually happening.

    Take it easy and hope your back frees up soon.

  4. Sorry about the back.

    You'll be pleased to know that I turn out quite well on a good day with a decent haircut, makeup and heels.

    Well, I did in the 80s anyway.

  5. Sorry to hear about your back. I have suffered since my 40s & regularly go to a chiropractor to have it restored. About once every three months. Course its not on the Nation Health though it should be because doctors are not very good with back problems, I find.

    Your lovely picture of birds feeding makes me wonder where my birds have gone? I had about 30 sparrows at a time & now not one. They vanished about a month ago! Sad really as I loved watching them.

  6. I know exactly what you mean about sliding between ages depending on getting a good nights sleep etc. etc.
    The photos are gorgeous, I am looking forwards to getting some chickens again this spring.
    Hope the back is better soon.

  7. ah yes i have done this to my back, too, and long before i turned 50. large doses of ibuprofin help considerably.

    good luck.

    the weather looks glorious where you are. it'll be -13 fahrenheit again tomorrow morning. i am very tired of winter.

  8. I wanted to say that I have just gone back and read your 'Darkness' blog and how very moved I was. PS am going to link 'Welsh hills'.

  9. Yikes, you poor thing. You don't realise how much bending you actually do in a day, until you can't do it.

    I love your 'sliding scale' and can soo relate:-)

    Hope the back improves asap.

  10. Snap! (By the way, that is not the sound of breaking backs) but I know just how you feel. Heartfelt sympathies and I hope you're bending, stretching and rocking the heels soon.

  11. Thanks for all your thoughts. My back feels a bit better today especially when I am standing up! Have also been doing toady's exercises which seem to help. However it is difficult to blog and read blogs standing up!

  12. Know just what you mean about ricocheting between 40 and 60 - sometimes I look in the mirror of a morning and see someone looking uncannily like Arthur Lowe looking back, then I put some make-up on and it's as though I've stepped into a time machine - thank goodness for make-up, I say.

    Sorry to hear about your back. Take it easy, plenty of rest, a bit of ice and maybe some ibuprofen to keep on top of the inflammation... Hope it rights itself soon.

    LBD xx
    PS Great pictures!

  13. Oh god this resonates so completely with my thoughts. I never thought it would be so hard in a weirdly-vain way -I don't like feeling like it and I certainly don't like looking like it. When, do you think, we stop caring and don't get shocked when we pass shop windows or catch a glimpse in a car mirror?
    And I’m sorry about the back, apart from hurting lots it’s a constant nagging reminder about the inevitableness of the aging process. But, the weather’s been fantastic, your little daffs and irises gorgeous and in our heads we are still somewhere around the 25-30 mark!

  14. Oh such gorgeous pictures Elizabeth, you put me to shame! Why don't mine turn out like that? You'll have to give me an onlime lesson I think! Rotten to hear about your back; I loathe that feeling of not being able to do what I want, particularly gardening. Thinking of you (and go ahead with the pics of things you love around your home - it becomes a bit addictive and I find myself photographing everything, even a plate of brownies!!!!) xx

  15. oh poor you, I hope it gets better. I hate hurting my back, you don't realise how much you use it until it doesn't work properly.

  16. Huge sympathy about the back pain. Very important it doesn't seize up-you MUST keep it mobile.

    I swim as much as I can to keep mine mobile and sit in the nice warm jacuzzi.

    I don't need an osteopath as mines different but I have couple of friends who swear by them.

    Hope it feels better now.


  17. Oh yes I too get the sliding between ages and looking in the mirror and seeing a suddenly aged woman - who wasn't there yesterday and with a good nights sleep won't be there tomorow.

    As the others have said keep your back mobile - but listen to the pain too it will tell you what you can and can't do and the exercises are a good idea as well.

    But ooodles of empathy a painful back is miserable . . .

  18. PS do you remember when Pondside hurt her back gardening - she said managed to get in the house and then slid to the floor - but that we would be proud of her as she managed to grab a book on the way down to read whilst she was lying there. So perhaps you should leave books lying around all over the place to grab . . .just in case . . . No! Sorry . . . silly thought.

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