If anyone has been reading the blog for a long time, they will know that we suffered from a lot of physical issues during our trip south to the Bahamas 4 years ago.
Serena suffers from two herniated discs, and a muscle spasm problem that can shut her down completely for days at a time. I suffer from chronic pain from my shoulders all the way down to my feet. Often the pain was so bad during our trip that I would cry uncontrollably while trying to do certain simple chores, like raising the dinghy or anchor, but had no other choice but to push through it. Both of us suffered from horrible bouts of depression related to our problems, although I did not write about that in so many words. And now that we have been home for awhile, we decided that we are going to do everything in our power to get ourselves better, so that we can enjoy whatever life throws at us. That however has taken us down a road that includes lots of medications, therapists, doctors, and specialists. Like so many things in life, sometimes things get worse before they can get better. And they have been about as "worse" as I care to see them, this year. The good news is that Serena is doing better. She still has issues, but the treatments are providing some relief. Perhaps some tweaking needs to be done, but things are definitely looking up for her. I on the other hand have been out of commission for months. I am still somewhat functional, but I am in pain always. I have hope though. Some of my treatments have started to show good results, and I am confident that in time I will have the ability to manage the pain.
We still managed to get Vita off the dock this year, although not far, or often. It was nice to get out, but with several appointments; 13 one week, we had limited time to spend aboard. We did get some projects done when time and physical ability allowed. Vita now has two roller furlers. It is very nice having the staysail on a furler. Getting the boat ready to sail is a breeze. Especially with the new added stackpack and lazy jacks. We had to convert the main to loose footed, but that was a breeze. Now we can sail the boat from the cockpit. Both foresails, and up to the first reef in the main. The one thing we found so far on Vita, is that the easier it is to use the sails, the more often we want to. Especially when in the confined waters of the ICW. Other than those two items, and the new bowsprit, Vita was left alone. I have a laundry list of items for next season. How many of them get done will be completely dependent on how physically capable I am. But one thing is for sure, we have not given up the dream.
I also have been considering going back to school for 3 years, which would delay us even further. I retired at the age of 40, with a meager pension. I believed at the time that I could go back to work at any menial job to make a few extra bucks for the cruising kitty. However, as this year has shown me, I am not employable in my current condition. Up to now, my whole life was measured by what I could physically give the world, and now I must change gears and find away to make a contribution through intellectual means. Unfortunately, that means retraining. I am a relatively smart person, and I have a lot of skills, but I have no formal education. And, if there is one thing that is needed in the world of intellectual labor, its a piece of paper saying that you can do it. Luckily, as a retired military person with injuries incurred while serving, I may qualify for some financial assistance, but time will tell. The priority for now is getting better.
How much attention the blog will get going forward is hard to say. Since Vita is now on the hard awaiting the first snowfall, and our focus is on our own health. It leaves very little excitement around sailing and cruising. Like all the other snow bound northerner's, we will continue to watch the blogs and Vlogs of our friends out there still cruising, and dream of warm waters and fresh breezes.
Vita back to one-six.