Travels with Alice

Like everyone else this time of year I stepped into my new year’s resolution to exercise more by stopping by the gym. I have not been to the gym for several months, my excuse being a broken arm that prevented my from many activities during the fall. However, now healing and in physio I felt an increase in gym activity would be a good start to the new 2011 me.

Bright. White blinding brightness coupled with a noise that reached into my spinal collumn and abraided all the nerves with sandpaper and vinegar. Frequent punches to the head by the whooping sound from the corner…yes, I was in the dressing room. Thin and muscular females flexing their might in demonstrations of body conscious I’m-in-better-shape-than-you hair tossing and forced gaity.

I keep my sunglasses on and consider stuffing earbuds in to muffle the noises. In the exercise room it is no better. Bright white overhead lights compete with wide white snowy vistas forcing in from outside. Keep your head down and peddle. And so I do but some sort of jarring sound keeps forcing its way in whir, whir, jang, jang, try something else.

Eventually I move out looking for small weights thinking to do some of the physio exercises. I make a circuit looking for 2 or 3 ound weights but I am bombarded and beaten by sights and sounds.

I can’t do this I realize. My gym-phobia is linked to my restaurant aversion and my shopping avoidance. It is, I suddenly realize, due to the migrainious triggers that each of those environments embed into their gestalt.

I stuff my bag and head out the door, shoulders hunching to protect my head, sunglasses and hood to deflect the lights and sounds. By the time I get home the cold stomach-ache has settled in and I wear the irritability across my skin; a coating I cannot entirely scrub off.

Can I spend the winter holed up in my silent, dark room?