Thursday, June 3, 2010

head, SHOULDERS, KNEES, & toes

Stress is a bad thing. I'm telling you, it's a BAD THING! Stress disrupts your immune system. It throws your hormones out of balance. It interferes with the birthing process for pregnant women (and animals, actually). It constricts blood flood and can cause heart attacks. Seriously, stress is bad!

I think stress is a member of my household, because it's never out of my sight. It haunts me at work sometimes. It stands in rude disapproval of me in my kitchen. It rolls its eyes at me in my laundry room. It taps it feet at me quite regularly with my church callings and obligations. I'm pretty sure it lurks in every shadow and I'm positive it has staked a claim in my bank account.

Some days you just have to find an escape from it, right? Mesa felt the need to just exactly that recently, so she asked if she could go visit my sister for a little while. We found a time it would work for her to do that and started planning a trip to Tennessee. In an effort to keep even THAT from becoming too terribly stressful, we planned to stay a couple days to recover from the long drive as well as to take a brief trip down one of the rivers there. Things weren't smooth, but they were going along close enough.

Then Friday came. That's the day Tommy, Manti and I had planned to take our little canoe trip down the Duck River. Mama and Daddy were going to entertain the little boys that day, Mesa was already at Kitty's house,.... we got up that morning and went to the canoe rental place. We paid $30 less than we expected (what a nice stress reducer!) and hopped in his van to head upriver a little ways. We opted for the short trip because there was the threat of rain and we weren't anxious to be caught in it, so that meant 5 miles to paddle. We got in the water with Manti in the back (steering position), Tommy in front (guiding position) and me in the middle (relaxing position). The river was shaded by trees,... no threat of sunburn! There was nobody else around that we saw,.... awesome!

Down the river we go and we see more shells than we ever thought a single river could produce! I'm not sure if they are fresh water clams or mussels, but either way they came in all shapes and sizes and colors! We enjoyed the birds singing and the fish jumping. I think we commented on every single turtle we saw. This was sheer bliss!

We pulled off to the bank a few times and let Manti explore a little. He was loving every minute of it. When we could all get out, we took turns changing places so that we all paddled at some point. I have to admit, I much prefer to paddle than to ride in the middle section. There is no seat, no cushion for your back, and you sit right on the floor where all the water goes! At times, the water is shallow enough that you can feel rocks bump the boat,...and thus it bumps YOU too. My rump was not enthused by that, so I stayed in a paddle position for as long as I could. After a while though, Tommy's back couldn't sit in the middle and Manti didn't want to. That meant Mama got the yucky spot for the last part of the trip. It wasn't all that bad. Tommy sat behind me and was able to paddle WITHOUT splattering water all over my head, and Manti sat up front where he could make sure we didn't miss any of the beautiful sights. I decided "let them work, I can relax", and so I sat on one life jacket and leaned back on another for some cushioning and let them paddle the boat while I let my hands glide through the water on either side of me.

You know how I am, right? I can't keep my mouth shut ever. I had to open it this time too and say things like "I need grapes boys,.... where's the fan? I need fanning." This part of the trip wasn't very long, but it was all in afternoon sun. I think Mother Nature heard my sass and got even by sunburning my inside of my arms, namely my shoulders, and also the inner part of my legs, particularly at my knees.

It's been almost a week now, and the blessed peace of those 4 hours on the river has long been over. The sunburn has taken a lot of oils and tender herbal care, so I'm not in pain anymore,....but one thing DOES remain,.....

Now I itch!
I have never been able to sing Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes and do those actions so well and thoroughly!

1 comment:

  1. Besides the sunburn and itchiness it all sounds simply divine. I've been wanting to go kayaking. We went fishing Thursday and we are all a little toasty too.