Friday, July 22, 2005

Burn, Baby, Burn

Burn, Baby, Burn Posted by Picasa

Well, this is what a second-degree chicken soup burn looks like, about 12 days into healing (I took this photo a few days ago). It actually extends all the way to my pinkie on top, and around to my palm near my thumb. Fun, fun, fun.

It IS healing well, though, and while it still stings a bit, the pain has been replaced by some pretty fierce itching. I keep it covered and am trying to avoid the temptation to scratch the hell out of it...

I am also under doctor's orders to keep it dry and no major housework for me (not to mention the fact that with the horrible heat wave, I can barely move anyway). While this, in theory, is quite reality, it's driving me batty. Jonathan is working all the time, covering for those on vacation, so pretty much no one is doing the heavy housework. My house is beginning to remind me a bit too much of what my mother referred to as her "liberation period," when she basically stopped doing housework after the divorce because my dad was such an unbelievable neat freak. That was a LONG four years...

Between my broken toe, my burned hand, my horrible face pain
(a la trigeminal neuralgia) and the MS heat sensitivity turning me into a sloth...I haven't been accomplishing very much with my life lately. And that depresses me. I know it's silly, I know I am supposed to be resting and that doing too much right now would actually make me sick---believe me, I learned my lesson four years ago when I was incapicitated because of a near-miss with a heat stroke. Still, lying about all day in front of the air conditioner, reading books with the kids and watching way too much History Channel International is really starting to get on my nerves.

I used to love summer. When I was a kid, summers were the absolute best. Remember that? The pure, unadulturated joy of summertime? I do.

My childhood summers were split up into two parts: the half with my dad, and the half with my mom. The half with my mom involved days spent at the pool, swimming and checking out the cute lifegaurds
(admission was 50 cents, and another $1.50 would get you a soda, hot dog and bag of chips). Friday nights were dances at the community center, or movies. I won a dance competition there once. I kept the certificate on my wall for years.

The half with my dad usually involved road trips to visit family in Tennessee, Florida and of course, the rez. People who go to Cherokee now, as tourists, are seeing a whole different city than the one I grew up in. The trappings that you find there now: the concerts with big-time comedians and country/western stars, the tourist shops, indoor plumbing....none of that was present when I was very young. We've come a long way, baby. And although I would never want my people to be poor again, like the were in the old days...I sometimes feel homesick for the Cherokee of my youth. For the roadside arts & crafts stands we'd put up to lure in the few tourists who would make the journey back in those days, for the big field near Mountainside where we'd play and dodge mosquitos, for the "busy" days of fishing for crawdads and running races and playing pranks. The last time I went home was several years ago...and it didn't feel like "home" to me anymore. And I cried for that. But you really can't go home again, time marches on, and all those worn-out cliches that are worn-out because they are true...

To be sure, progress has been good for my people. The water doesn't rot your teeth out anymore (making me among the last to have to deal with "reservation rot"). If you need to see a doctor, chances are, you can (and without having to leave town to do it). Tourism is good, and jobs are easier to come by. I don't hear stories anymore of people without heat or running water. Not in Cherokee, anyway...many other reservations are not so fortunate, I'm afraid. But as I said...progress has been good for the Cherokee, for the most part. But at the same time, I can't help but remember when a friend of my grandfather's years ago, when all the progress was in its beginning stages, remarking in a sad voice that "It's looking more and more like Pigeon Forge 'round here." Meaning, it was becoming more of a tourist town than an Indian town. Now, I want to be very clear on this: I'm not saying that it's a bad thing. I'm just, I don't know...missing the good ol' days, I guess. Getting older.

Literally, getting older. My birthday is next week. Which is probably at the root of all this running down Memory Lane. And all that running has tired me out. Good night, y'all...

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At 7:34 AM, Blogger mdmhvonpa said...

Ummm, ow.

At 7:56 AM, Blogger Mia's Mom said...

I'm glad to see that it's healing very well!

At 11:07 AM, Blogger Angel said...

((((Angel))))) Owwww, I'm so sorry :(

And you're not being silly. Inactivity drives me nuts too.

Hang in there hon!!!

At 12:04 PM, Blogger Pixie LaRouge said...

Ah the journeys we take in the mind! A thousand miles and no shoe leather wasted :)

I grew up in a tiny tourist town in the mighty woods of IL. One of those beautiful places where, on a hot summer day, it was cool and still under the trees. My brother and I would tramp all day, looking for the largest, most ancient tree in the forest, and when we'd find it, we'd track down other hikers to see how many of us it took to reach around the thing.

It was cut down several years ago, as it had begun to rot and dropped branches, nearly braining several people.

The joy of memory is that my tree and your rustic heaven can still exist in the stories we tell our friends and children.

The other joy of memory is that it can distract from that ITCH. (Oooooooh I feel for you! Hope it goes away soon!!!!) And mental images are something to stare at other than the heaps around the house (my livingroom still has boxes).

Heal the rest of the way quickly!


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