Restrain a wild animal, like a deer or bird or bunny, and it will likely develop lactic acidosis from the stress of simply being restrained. That is why good-intentioned rescue of baby or injured small animals, except for the ungulates, most often results in their death. Maybe not immediately, but unless some measures are taken to reduce the stress and the use of sodium bicarbonate or IV fluids, the sweet creature will most surely die.
From good intentions.
What happens is that when an animal is captured/restrained/confined, the stress causes the production and release of lactic acid from, well, that is less important for my purposes than that it happens.
Why do I even know about this?
I heard it on Public Radio on my way home from all today's Saturday stuff. The focus of that part of the programming was about fainting, and how and why some creatures faint. We know that people can faint, and most folk have heard about those fainting goats. I digress, but if you have a critter that startles easily and falls over in a dead faint when you sneak up on it or alarm it in some way, and you actually do that, and even more heinously find it amusing, well, damn you. Not shame, no finger-waggling, just straight to damning. O.K., shame, shame, shame on you.
Why is it important to me?
Because it puts what I have been experiencing into some perspective. Of some kind. I might be over-thinking this, but not likely. It feels too important, like if I do not pay attention, something essential might be missed when I need it most.
So, stress. It is different for each person...or animal...all of us creatures...and is never really a constant, in that it can have vastly differing triggers, causes, experience, treatment or resolution. The possible variables are insane.
There is a scientific definition about how stress is "...any stimulus that alters the homeostatic state of an animal, whether internal or external...", thanks to this guy named Breazile.
Stress begins causing changes in the hypothalamus, which causes the next thing and the next response and then next one and the one following and, well, it is all fascinating, and if I want to read it again I will, it is just not all that important now.
The result reduces the ability of my immune system to remain relatively helpful in protecting me from disease. I am digressing again, but I wonder how much my life experiences have been the causation, as far as that is possible, for my arthritis (which I developed at a young age, post marriage) or the diabetes and high blood pressure that I have had for only ten years or so. And, lest I forget, my obesity. Most of that last one is behavioral, but I was a very skinny child and young adult. Painfully so. Oh, never mind, I am just looking for excuses for shabby behaviors. However, it is intriguing, yes?
I have always taken full responsibility for my physical condition. That anything I am, here in my skin suit, could be affected by all or any of the other stuff has never occurred to me. Now that I am thinking about it, I am having a difficult time, impossible really, believing that if it is true, it makes any difference. Even if it did, so what. I have to deal with what is, not make excuses for myself with all the what-ifs. Whodunnit? Who gives a fuck.
So, anyway, I got home and immediately came to the computer and soon I was reading a paper via NOAA's site (http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/interactions/injury/pdfs/day2_spraker_artiodactylids.pdf):
Zoo and Wild Animal Medicine, Current Therapy
Editor: Murray E. Fowler, D.V.M.
Professor Emeritus of Veterinary Medicine
School of Veterinary Medicine
University of California at Davis
"In nature, CM is probably an inherent mechanism
that hastens the death of an animal following capture
by a predator, thereby reducing pain in the prey and
conserving energy for the predator-a mechanism
which is, in a way, beneficial to both. This condition
is occasionally observed in domestic animals and
Works for me.
Although, I do have to wonder what kinds of tissue damage might be part and parcel here. Frankly, I am in no emotional or spiritual condition to even think about this, much less do anything proactive. I am driving myself crazy, looking for connections, weird causes, anything to make some sense here, or, better, to make some of this, any of this crap more understandable so that it will go away. I want easy answers, dammit. This is what happens when I dissemble, although I like to think of it as less trying to ignore or conceal and more like running away. I am good at that.
That is a choice. That choice thing seems to be a critical aspect to consider right now. I have made countless choices, variations on a theme, up and down scales beyond measure, all over the place, during the past year. Oh, sure, I made decisions before that, but none of them benefited anyone. Not really.
Even though life went along as smoothly as I could make it, no one benefited, not in any decent or reasonable sense. I am sure that my ex would disagree. All decisions, choices, whatever they could be called, were to keep the peace, but I was never successful at that, at following the rules. I now know that is mostly because the rules kept changing, often were unknown to me, but that is besides the point, but it is important to the whole capture aspect.
No one was happy. I had moments of happiness when I was able to escape for an afternoon or a day at work. He had his own moments of pleasure when he was able to do whatever he needed to do to me. Perhaps he was happy other times, but I have no knowledge or evidence to support that. Oh, yeah, I do; he had lots of good times with his friends. I know that. He told me. I saw it once. One of my strongest continuing memories is when he had reduced me to wherever he wanted to have me be is that amazing release he experienced. The deep, cleansing sigh, the physical release of his muscles, the ecstatic and dreamy look in his eyes, almost orgasmic, the soft and deep smile of just plain and pure pleasure.
At the time, it meant that the worst was over for a while, at least until the pressure built again and he needed to do whatever to find that prize. Remembering that process now, gosh, that end part, that might be the really and true worst part.
Those were betrayals of everything that is supposed to be a decent marriage. Or, relationship, I guess.
I am not yet free, but I am no longer in imminent danger. Such a huge leap forward, and, still, such a baby step. I am finished with him. He cannot stop messing with me. A standoff. Sucks.
Today just goes to prove that there is not any randomness in the Universe. None. Not a bit. I have spent the past few days trying to release the energy of Thursday's drama. I have been eating well, sleeping decently, and avoiding naps, you know, the ones that allow me to doze the day away so that I do not have to think about or deal with anything. A to-the-bone exhaustion, barely able to keep my eyes open, fall on the floor tiredness. I have kept busy so that I do not sleep the day away. I think my mind is more clear. Maybe.
So, hearing that program this afternoon and coming home to find out what capture myopathy might be is the the proof of the no-randomness pudding. I needed to hear and learn something to help me out here. I got it. Maybe I was living in my awareness, listening and watching for something. Maybe that is why the program caught my attention, even though I had to turn it off when the traffic got too busy. I am not digressing to write about the weird drivers on the expressway.
I needed to hear this today. Thank goodness I was paying attention.
Beyond all of this, today was nice. I was certain, even to last night, that I might not be able to go to breakfast with my friends and then the event thing. I set the alarm and I got up. I got ready. I cleaned the snow off of the car. I drove to the highway. I got on the entrance ramp. I drove all the way there. I got out of the car and went into the restaurant. I made nice. I was pleasant, charming, occasionally funny and was hardly snarky at all. The event thing went well, and afterwards I went to lunch with the friend I took along. I took her home. I came home. I listened to the radio. I stopped and bought diabetes socks...on sale...wooty-woo-hoo.
I also have a new mascara and some free stuff that came along with it. Eye liner. Wow.
Dark, dark chocolate with teeny lemon bits and cracked black pepper. Yum.
I made it through an entire day without any drama. None. Now it is late, nearly time to think about the time for bed. Not enough hours left to mess up anything.