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2009-11-26 - 10:27 a.m.

...physical disintegration....

Yesterday was quite a full day. I spent two hours - TWO HOURS - at the dentist before racing home and driving off to a forest in North Funcouver. There, we tromped around and collected tree-ring cores from huge trees, and scouted out a location for our meteorological station and water sampler.

Let us stop for a moment and take note that a GROSS GENERALIZATION is about to occur. So let me put my following comments into perspective: I've visited two dentists in Canada, ~five in the USA, and two in Germany - surely, this makes me qualified to comment on THE ENTIRE WORLD!!! :-)

My observation is this: Canadian dentists SPEND TIME with their patients. I mean, more than ten seconds - this dentist was with me for ONE SOLID HOUR. It was shocking. I'd only allocated 1 1/2 hours for the whole appointment and so I had to cut it short, rush off to my house, wolf down a cup of soup before running off to my next meeting in North Fun.

The other shocking point is that it was probably the worst report I'd ever had. As the doc ran her tiny camera through my mouth, she pointed out that more than half of my teeth are cracked and about 1/3 are chipped - turns out I'm an incessant tooth grinder - I've even dented the bejeezus out of my gold in-lays. I sort of knew this, but the damage is sobering, and seems to have accelerated tremendously in the last year and a half.

(I thought that perhaps the change in my teeth was related to huge changes in body chemistry and a reduction in Calcium supply associated with pregnancy and lactation. The dentist was skeptical of this interpretation. I may choose to believe it anyway.)

In any event, I will probably be going back for many more trips, which has me a little depressed. It's tough to accept that one's degree of resilience is diminishing.

On a similar note (e.g., diminishing resilience), I saw the physical therapist this morning, which was also a mix of news for me. Good news is that the stretches have had a miraculous impact on my back muscles overall. The majority of my back and leg muscles have bounced back and are extremely flexible (thank you, teranika genetics).

The bad news is that the left, injured side still has a long way to go. This was demonstrated by my simple frolic through the forest yesterday. Our hike was a very simple one, but we had to venture off the trail onto uneven ground. This was followed by an hour and a half of sitting in traffic (have I mentioned that I HATE cars?). Plus, I was so frantic yesterday that I did not get a chance to stretch out until early evening. So I was hurting, and I still am today.

But I'll end on a positive note. I'm determined to step up the level of activity and stretching this week, and I'm hoping to engage K and Susi in this endeavor so that some additional walking becomes routine. I refuse to live like this.

Now if only I could give up the grind..

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...they are just words, Suzi... - 2011-08-29
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