The tough part of tough.

Whatever it takes
‘Cause I love the adrenaline in my veins
I do whatever it takes
‘Cause I love how it feels when I break the chains

-Imagine Dragons, “Whatever It Takes”

Y’all may recall that I’m recovering from shoulder surgery…when I was getting diagnosed my (future) surgeon took a look at the MRI and said, “Holy crap dude! You didn’t do all this at once!”

Nope…a lifetime of dangerous things…hard work, women, and motorcycles. Also more than a few of those events where I as a man (as opposed to just “male”), had to step up and do what I had to do at all costs.

Some of that bill is becoming due.

The right shoulder operation has been done and I’m in bit of enforced convalescence to let the tendons graft back to the bone. It’s an all or nothing kind of thing…if I tear ’em again before completely healed there won’t be enough left of ’em for another attempt.

So…what’s the difficulty? The pain? The money?

Nope. Pain I can handle. Money…well I can make more. The tough part is the “role.”

Here’s the deal…literally all my teenage and adult life, my role as a man was simply this: “Push past the pain and get the gawddamn job done.”

It was a lesson learned hard and early. Want to eat? Don’t want to freeze? Then work…and hard.

Crime wasn’t ever my thing. I *like* people too much. And I was the wrong sex, and/or color…and from the wrong background, for there to be any outside help. It came down to work.

It always has.

It was a simple equation. Work or die.

That was it. In work, home life, education, protecting me and mine, whatever…the “job” was mine and the only acceptable place for me was in toiling at it. There were no days off. No excuses. No allowances for exhaustion, pain, or weakness.

There’s still, outside of me and mine, really no place for me in society if I’m not doing that. I came from “a long way down” where this is both obvious and unavoidable.

The world is absolutely ruthless in this regard. Platitudes and wishful thinking do not alter the reality one iota. Examples litter the streets of every city in this nation.

So…the shoulders…first surgery done. Pain, yep, I can handle it…but here’s the thing…this damage is simply because I spent so much time pushing past my physical limitations in the past. Trading pain and health…the one currency life ALWAYS accepts…for my present and future.

If I do that now. push past the pain, the disability will become permanent. If I take the time to let this heal as instructed…well…I stand a good chance at 100% recovery.

So…let’s just say I’m HIGHLY motivated to do this right.

…but the drives are intense…near overwhelming really…and the world keeps on moving with or without me. My required role in it has not changed. The things I need to attend are still piling up. If I fall far enough behind…well…I’m of an age where I may never catch back up.

My skill-sets have changed to a degree, allowing some leeway…but only some.

Between a second surgery and a LOT of PT, this year is a bust. It remains to be seen what the final cost will be (and I’m not talking about the money).

“Work or die”. It’s ingrained in my soul. It’s part of my id.

…and there’s work to be done, and at the moment, all I can do is sit there and stare at it.

Wanders off singing, “Paying anything to roll the dice just one more time…”

I’ll see you on the road.

Daniel Meyer

Above lyric from:

You can read more about my fitness journey here.

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