Monthly Archives: June 2012

Life Is a Carousel

Horse on Carousel, Princes Street Gardens, Edi...

Horse on Carousel, Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Funny how life takes you around in a circle. If you’re not careful, it will do it to you time and time again, making you dizzy. And not a good kind of dizzy like you get from swinging your grand-daughter around. Her peals of laughter making your pulse rise, making your heart feel like it’s beating through your chest; your lungs expanding as the world whirls by, faster and faster keeping pace with your breathing. And when you stop, you find you cannot move, for up and down has been displaced.

But, you find you have each other to cling to. You have each other to laugh with. And slowly the kitchen stops rolling by and all settles back into its rightful place. The stove, still and squat, sits black and glum; the fridge looms over you in its stolid silvery stance. The granite countertop, mottled in black, silver and gray, no longer appears as though numerous nickels and dimes have been lodged within it.

You know it’s not really there, but you have caught yourself countless times reaching over to pick up that coin. Laughing at yourself, you swear it’d been blinking and twinkling at you. And like a mirage, it evaporated the minute you tried to touch it. It was nothing more than a silvery spot reflecting the brightness of the overhead lighting. The countertop plays tricks on your eyes, just like the twirling plays tricks on your brain.

Just like life plays tricks on your psyche. You think up is one way and it turns out, no; it’s down. Left is right and right is wrong. And no matter how you twist and twirl, you can’t make it go right side up. Or is it downside up?

Life is a carousel. A merry-go-round that is sometimes not so merry. If you’re lucky, you get a bench seat and a relaxing ride. But if you draw a bucking pony, you must needs hang on tight as the world whizzes by. Round and round it goes and where it stops, nobody knows.


I’d forgotten the exhilaration. The heart pounding, the sweat pouring, the lungs breathing oh, so deeply.  The oh, so alive feeling. The crescendo, up and up and up, to that mountain peak, that climax so delicious when reached. My legs working at maximum expenditure, my arms reaching, my hands grabbing on so very tightly, holding on to that life-giving force.

No, I’m not talking about sex, though that does have its virtues. Especially with someone you love. I’m talking about exercise. It used to be my almost daily routine, more so than not. I looked forward to it. I longed for it. My stationary bike called to me, come, come, come.

And I would come. And then stay, for a long while, an hour, an hour and a half. I pushed and pushed, faster and faster, to find the limits of my endurance. I wanted to know how far I could I go, how many miles on my bike that went nowhere. It would keep track for me, if I so requested. Sometimes I didn’t want to know distance; just time and it would comply. I wanted to know how long it would take to hit my summit.

But, I never reached that climax, that peak. I found I could go on and on and on.  The only thing stopping me was will. How long I wanted to ride. It was a race against myself that I could not lose. No matter how hard I tried.

Until I stopped. I don’t even remember the exact reason. Some emotional upheaval. Some physical flare-up. Something I let beat me, suspend me, interrupt me. And that led to a very real flare, a flare we all know only too well, those of us who can claim RA as an unwanted companion. It took my hand, my right hand. Tried to claim it for its very own.

I gave in to the pain. For a little bit.

I let myself be led into a big dark hole. For a little bit.

And then, I fought back. And I will continue fighting back. Forever.

I’m back in the saddle and wondering about a little nugget I picked up during my daily reading.

What’s this about women reaching orgasm during exercise? Interesting. . .