Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Lyme Disease Update

Deaths' Head Tombstone from Old New England, stands in contrast to our death denying culture.
My wife is better mannered than I am. When she stops blogging for a while, she has the good grace to announce it. I tend to exit my little corner of  Cyberspace without any by-your-leaves. She recently shamed me about it, I am going to try to do the same as a measure of politeness to any regular readers.

My last post was actually on her blog, and about my Lyme disease. You can read my theory on Lyme here.  I wrote it a couple weeks ago. I am pleased to be slowly getting better each day. The best part is I finished my course of medicine. I am unsure where side effects of the antibiotics began and where the disease ended.

The Lyme has been frustrating. I am officially a codger in years now, but have not fully come to grips with the prospect of significant physical decline. I am much better prepared for death than disability.  For a long time, I have been in habit of preparing for death each morning.  I consider it right after the first cup of coffee and before my second cigarette.

Historically, the old farmers often feared disability more than death. In 18th Century New England, the angel of death stared you in the face every time you walked by the cemetery. Part of the colonial strategy at Bunker Hill was to keep the Yankee militia's legs shielded by a stone wall, so that they might be killed; but not hit in the leg and disabled. 

With the Lyme, I was not prepared for either the feeling that comes from being unable to do normal homestead tasks, or the feeling sorry for myself that results from inability.......

If I am smart, I might be able to use this experience as a preparation for growing older on the homestead. I do have some guides. Last year, I read William B. Irvine's book on Stoicism.  If the reader is a Christian believer, there is almost nothing in Stoicism that is inconsistent with classical Christianity. If the reader is not a believer, the Stoics may provide some useful grounding in life besides football, face book, and dancing with the stars.  Here is Dr. Irvine's lecture on growing old with grace. Its worth a listen.