Patience is a virtue and it’s not a virtue I have

Firstly it’s been a while, I haven’t swam in 8 months and it’s much longer since I last posted anything.

It’s been a weird time for all and between lockdowns and life and elections and insurrections and just general chaos trying to find a way to swim hasn’t been top of my agenda. I found alternatives

16 months ago had someone asked if I run, my answer would be no, not even if my life depended on it. Thankfully it doesn’t but it turns out in the midst of chaos it was a valid option.

Running John…

Anyway today had many milestones, I crossed 3200km of running since June 1 2020, cause when I do something I rather obsessively do it. But also in swim News today, I got myself a pass for the beach for the summer and a pass to the public pool at the end of my street which is starting the season doing reservation only hours which to be honest is perfect for me and opens June 5th, so it seems like my sabbatical will end soon.

Before jumping to next stage, I am going to explain the title with an example I am so impatient I don’t like online shopping, because if I want something, I want it now. This has obviously been a challenge for the past year or so.

So my last swim, last October, it wasn’t meant to be my last swim of the season but it turned out that way. A few days after this swim, I started feeling unwell, I tried to ignore it as I usually would but I had some pain I couldn’t ignore. I had a UTI, never had one before , rare in men like 5 in 100,000 cases rare. Anyway in discussions with doctor and tests we put it down to my penchant for swimming in lakes and rivers. I was still hopeful of getting back in before it got too cold.

The UTI took a while and I felt quite run down, so Nov came and a contentious election and I got the worst rash/dry skin of my life. For a couple of weeks I was barely getting 2-3 hours of sleep before waking in irritation. It finally passed, then Dec came and towards the holiday week the return of my UTI. So single UTI are rare in men, recurrent are really rare. This raises questions from the doctors as does the swollen nodes I have had in a few places since sometime between October and December. I didn’t think too much on them as who hasn’t had swollen nodes when run down or sick.

However the doctors had concerns when adding together nodes, skin irritation, random infections, 70lb weight loss (note change in exercise and diet-vegetarian for a year now) etc. So Jan and through to March, we start doing some tests and people try to start an insurrection during a pandemic cause there wasn’t enough stress. We start with bloods which don’t show anything crazy, yay, but the doctors still have concerns on nodes, so we start with ultrasounds which just generates more concerns cause, eh well the swollen nodes. Plus this was the time a doctor said the most terrifying words that have ever been said to me “so, is there any history of testicular or penile cancer in your family”, thankfully no and no I don’t have either but you know..terrifying and all while the world seems to be collapsing around us. So then other scans and tests which all thankfully show no growths etc but they all continue to show the nodes. I have had more visits to doctors and hospitals during a pandemic than I had in the previous 10 years combined. But In good news the various nodes are swollen but not large enough to take any actions at the moment, so the action is to take no action until something else changes which may never happen(I should add I got multiple opinions on this approach). By changes, I mean the plan is to monitor the nodes and monitor me and I monitor the nodes for myself. I get to see the nodes most days there are some close to my armpit, I stretch they are there, I put my hands on my hips I feel the ones in my pelvis, it’s fun, it’s stressful, it requires patience. Patience is not my virtue.

So anyway, back to swimming. I have missed swimming but things have changed. I have gotten messages and questions about when I am swimming and if I want to swim with people and why am I not running out to find any water any way and lists of open pools and suggestions of places I could swim and this ramble is meant to explain some of that and I am terrified of posting this one, cause Its personal and it’s telling people things I haven’t over the last 8 months and this may get posted and then removed. It’s been stressful for me and my wife. The last 16 months and the last 8 have changed me a bit, I am an emotional person and annoyingly hopeful at times that the best will will always happen but at times this past year had made me feel broken and I am still obsessive but also trying to find peace and calm when and where I can. I have realized some of my other priorities, I always joked that my wife and I would kill each other if we ever worked together. While we don’t work together,the last 16 months working in the house together within earshot and spending all our time together, well in reality, this has just made me realize how much I love her, I didn’t think I could love her more but after 16 months at home together It turns out I do.

So where am I going with all this, em well it turns out I don’t know, I thought I did when I started writing, I thought I had a plot line but no apparently not. But maybe that best sums up the past 16 months and the future, maybe I will return to swimming 36 mile events, maybe I will just swim when I want for fun, maybe I will keep running, maybe I will find something else. It will all eventually reveal itself I guess but in the mean time….patience and it’s not my virtue

A somewhat adequate swimmer

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