Yesterday we got out to the farm and all the cows came running over and shouted at us.  They had hardly touched their hay, but they looked thin.  We couldn’t figure out why at first.  Just before I got Matilda for milking, Ethan discovered someone had tripped over the water hose and yanked it so hard the automatic float valve was malfunctioning.  He quickly moved the water trough so the hose was not across the walkway, and filled it back up.  The cows were fighting over the water.  Sampson has decided he is the dominant bull now that Explorer is gone, and he was taking the opportunity to assert his status and be a jerk.

Ethan filled a smaller trough up on the side so the lesser-status cows could also drink.  Flora and the yearling calves flocked to it, and pushed the little calves off.  The little calves looked unhappy about this, but they were probably nursing all day long, anyway.  Nutty licked a leak at the spigot.  Everyone had water all over their faces.

The calves skipped around in the excitement, all in a big gang.  They are like children, playing in a big group while the grown-ups stand around seriously and worry about things like who’s going into heat, and who gets the first drink.  The yearling calves, the teenagers, stand around sarcastically and ignore their smaller siblings skipping around, begging them to play.

Yesterday I went to a new massage therapist.  He doesn’t do massage so much as a sort of orthobionomy.  He hardly did anything – just a few small adjustments.  He said my intestines were adhered to my back muscles.  I could tell they have been, but I didn’t know what to do about it.  Actually, I didn’t know that exactly, but my guts felt funny.  They have since I was pregnant with Rose, and they had to squelch out of the way as she was growing.  They never felt like they went back right.  It’s made my stomach pouch out funny, but it hurt to stand up straight, or exercise my stomach muscles.  I have been to other therapists, and chiropractors.  I have a twist in my body, and I am in constant discomfort when I stand.

After the adjustment, and I had sat up, he told me I really need to go back to the Dojo and start training again.  To my surprise, I started to cry as I explained I just didn’t have any energy or childcare.  He said I just need to do it, even if I suck at it, even if I have to bring all my children and they overrun the place.

I haven’t done anything like that for three and a half years – since Clothilde was born.  I’ve just felt totally shut-down, constantly alert, constantly running after her, being woken up throughout the night and never getting a good sleep.

I need to move differently.  He said he was surprised how bad things were in my body.  That made me cry even more, because it was so true….I’ve been here in the background, struggling.  My health has been so bad, but I can’t ever rest or relax.  I’m like a fixture, running around, like a robot.  No one thinks I might not be able to do something.  They just expect me to do it.  No one thinks I might be sick, or need something.  They just complain if I don’t do what they want.  I almost died a few months ago.  I’m just surviving now.

When I stood up, my stomach hurt strangely.  I kept having stomach pains.  That evening I was laughing with my children, and I realized I hadn’t laughed like that for a long, long time.  I haven’t been unhappy or happy – just numb.  Already dead.  I felt alive for the first time since I can remember.

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