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Reintegration

Reintegration

It is appx 5 weeks since I left the trail. I never wrote a final entry for that, but I still intend to. I finally saw two bears one on each of my last two days on trail. I went to a marvelous play in Ashland…

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Before the trail I was unhealthy. My blood pressure was getting high. I was obese (as per the medical definition, simply “overweight” as per society). At one point my blood fats were 2.5x safe levels. I was pre diabetic. My night time heart rate was up around 70bpm. I felt like I was on the verge of a heart attack.

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On trail I slept more consistently than at any other time in my whole life. I would try to stay awake to watch a meteor shower and would fall asleep in maybe two minutes . Staying awake past 9pm was always hard, staying up till midnight (going out with people etc) was almost painful. My body is used to sleeping when it is dark. Even a month of poor sleeping habits now that I am back home has not changed that in the least. I am tired as hell at 9, and I am wide awake at 7am… Even if I went to bed at 4am.

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I have had four or five weeks off trail of feeling well. Satisfied. Healthy. Fit. Content. I went to a class reunion and a wedding. I was eager and optimistic to get back to work. I arranged a ride along with Danny for two days in order to be able to put my head back in the working game without too much pressure.

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I lost 40 pounds.

My blood pressure is the best it has ever been.

My blood fats were down to the high end of acceptable for the first time in over a decade.

My sleeping heart rate has been 50-60.

I am still pre-diabetic, but slightly less so.

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While I was gone, the boss that hired me quit. They gave my nearly ideal schedule to another driver. (Sat-Tue, 8am). One of the new bosses asked me when I used to work, and when I would like to work (I told him ideally the same schedule, except starting Sunday).

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Last Friday I was informed that my work schedule is 5pm (for appx 12 hour shifts) Wednesday-Saturday. I called him back about 10 minutes later and asked if he could give m something else-during the day. He asked if I could sit tight till The start of November. Wanting to be a team player, I said yes. On Sunday I decided to try to get a jump start on the sleep change and forced myself to stay up till 4. I was awake three hours later at 7. I did the same Monday night, but only lasted till 2am. I did the same Tuesday night, and actually managed to sleep past 8. I am not hallucinating-tired, yet. I will call in sick if that happens (happened to me twice when I was an over the road trucker)

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Since last Friday I have put on five pounds (for a total of 10-12 since I left trail).

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My head hurts.

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I know that night shift workers have more trouble regulating their weight. More heart attacks. More cancer.

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I am terrified that I am on the fast track to worse health than before I started.

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My calm, my refound mojo, my serenity, my empathy… My gains on trail — feel like they are all evaporating.

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I want to stick it out till November, and hope my boss was in earnest about fixing it then.  I am holding it together…  For now.
*gulp*

Charlie Hough
2 Comments
  • Vivian "Honey" Hill

    I am having the same issues. I have gained 5 lbs, my sleep is getting worse. My complexion is getting” muddy” compared to how beautifully clear it was on the trail. I hate how complicated it is to live in “real life”. I am in the matrix again.

    October 14, 2016 at 4:16 am Reply
    • Charlie Hough

      So what is next?

      October 14, 2016 at 10:55 am Reply

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