Monday, September 14, 2015

rain, sun & the surprise of walking and discovering places

Today: rain and sun and rain and sun
Today: half-time of cure
Today: starting the new week with breakfast, followed by a massage. Then some webwork time, then breathing therapy. Ah, the joy
Today: learning that I walked 12.200 steps yesterday (that’s at least what the walk app says)
Today: feeling gratitude. And this soft vibe of a deeper happiness.
Today: finally writing that blog post that I have in my mind since some days. About the surprises that happened in the first half of the cure stay.

Like: discovering Nordic Walking. I never expected to like it. And now I tried. And it turns out: I really, really like it. It’s good for me, and feels like a shoe that is fitting from start. Hadn’t expected that at all. I always have been more of a jogging-person, and brought my jogging shoes with me, planning to finally start jogging here again after the long pause. Jogging felt okay, but my left knee wasn’t all happy about it. Then came aqua walking, and I realized I still have a lot of tension in my body: “relax your shoulders” was one of the main advices of different. And the other: “pull your hip forward slightly, to create more stableness in that area.”

Then came aqua walking, and with it a slow-motion-focus-on-details-underwater-walk. Which brought the realization that due to my neuropathy in my feet- which is a common side-effect of chemo: damaged nerves in the toes and fingers, which cause an antsy / numb feeling – so due to that, I started to put my feet down more flatly, to have more “ground” with the step, instead of walking in a rolling-foot-down motion from ankle to toes. Basics of walking, that is. Which can get messed up by long times of illness and medication.

That’s exactly what makes this cure stay so important and so moving: it gets to basics, on many levels. So the suggestion of the therapeut was: “Try Nordic walking”. I wasn’t sure about that, but hey, I am here to try and learn. So I tried. And: it is really just the right thing. The walking style of Nordic is like a training for “relax your shoulders”, “focus on the walk”, and “think of that stableness”. Plus, opening and closing the hands when moving the sticks with the steps is a good training for the neuropathy in the hands and fingers. This way of walking, it fits for me. It makes me and my body smile.

And the other beautiful benefit of nordic walking: it takes me places. I borrowed a pair of walking sticks now, and bought a map of the Nordic walks. And started to try them. They are surprisingly well-chosen and easy to follow with the signs, and lead through such a variety of landscapes: fields, forests, small villages, to scenic viewpoints and along interesting areas.

They let me see the spots of beauty and amazement of this region here in close-up: the place where “Torf” (that dark rich earth) was dug from the ground, which created an own human-made landscape now with small lakes.

Or that place called “Grube”, which leads to slight hill – and walking up there, the landscape suddenly opens and you can see the Alps.

Plus, there are all those unnamed places. The place where the wood gets dark like in a fairy tale, and then opens again to new green. The place where the soft rain started to fall, and the place where it ended again and the sun came through. The place where the tiny rose-colored flowers grow.

Looking forward to the next walk already. And to continuing this walking/healing journey after the cure, back home.

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