Glenys is writing this for me. I’ve asked her to. I’m telling her what to write. Also, she’s been doing the recent posts with the photos because I can’t. I think that she’ll have to do all of the posts by herself from today, at least until we get home and I can hopefully recover.
I’ve been really struggling since we arrived in León. That was 7 days ago. Glenys ‘knew’ it beforehand, particularly before the group started cycling in Pamplona, but others don’t ‘see’ it and I can’t explain it and I usually don’t know how ‘bad’ I am.
Then the cycling took it out of me too, not only physically but the mental exhaustion trying to think and the processing of being on a different bike, riding on the other side of the road, roundabouts and sometimes narrow roads with intersections, pedestrians, cars, trucks and buses. That’s a lot going on. I was also always worrying about the others in the group because I can’t process things in the same way if they are having difficulties, punctures, or as what happened, illness too.
It’s all too confusing for me and that becomes stressful and makes me less able to process. And Glenys had to speak up back after the first day, in Estella, to say that I could not lead the group out, not even for a short time, and they had to support me to understand that. She tried to explain how to do that.
Not only would that whole process of riding on the road be difficult for me mentally, but possibly dangerous for other road users as well. What if I’d caused an accident but not injured myself? Would our travel insurance cover it? Luckily she made me realise at least, to stay within the group all day, but now I’m not even sure if I did.
We had a rest day in León and Glenys started walking on because what takes her more than two days of walking, we cover in one day on the bikes. But that day, I didn’t want her to go, but I didn’t say that either.
But she sensed something because she said that she’d try to arrange that she stay in the same Hotels instead of backpacking. That was a relief to me.
But see, I didn’t even see how that puts pressure on her to phone ahead trying to coordinate that, in a rural region of small villages, and only a few Hotels. Basically most were booked out. But she’s sorted out a lot, and addressing the other places as she can.
It’s also meant though that she’s had to walk distances each day that are too much for her because of the neuropathy of her feet. And it worries me to see her struggle with the nerve pain. Yesterday it hurt so much when we were still only half way to Ambasmestas where we are staying. But she can’t stand still to rest, that hurts more, and even if there were places to sit, it would take many more hours to get anywhere. But I could see that she was hurting.
But she wants to walk with me. She often sees the signs that I’m not managing. Things like answering the phone but not speaking; walking but not at all involved mentally; difficulty with minor things. The list goes on!
In the end, last night after a good rest (which she’s been ensuring that I now get each afternoon at the end of each day’s walking), someone in the group asked me to organise a booking for dinner for the group. I couldn’t even do it. It was too stressful and confusing. Glenys ‘knew’ and inconspicuously followed me in to the dining area and saw what was happening so did it because I was getting agitated with the confusion. Also, I’m not managing the noise levels in the public places.
Glenys is going to talk to the whole group. Other times she’s talked to those relevant to the situation because rarely is everyone in exactly the same place at the same time except for dinner, and that’s not conducive to that type of discussion.
People don’t see how hard it is. People see someone who is fit, and young. Today, everything is so difficult for me.