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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Wall

I hit a wall last night. It must have landed on me, because I'm still having trouble moving today.

Yesterday was my first day back after surgery (on Thursday), my first day at school in nearly a week because of all the pre-op stuff. I had a lot of sleep on Thursday and Friday, and Saturday I even ran 5 miles. I had been worried that it would hurt my hand too much, but it turned out that running was so miserable (:D) that it kind of made me forget my hand. Plus, my "claw" made a great iPod holder since I'd forgotten my armband. Sunday we spend 4. 5 hours weeding at my father-in-law's sand volleyball court, and I came home and crashed again, so while I was nervous about how Monday would go, I felt rested and prepared to go back.

The school day went fine, but when I came home to go for a run things went downhill. Since I'd managed 5 miles on Saturday, I thought I wouldn't have any problems. I had planned to run 3 1-mile legs with a walking break in between them. The first mile I managed in a 9'51" pace, but had to stop and walk once. The second mile was a 9'31" pace, and then I said "screw it" and walked home. It was like running in mud. It's really frustrating to expect to do better and then not perform.

A trip to the grocery store finished me off, and I was so thankful that my oldest came along with me. I know my 17-year old had plenty he'd rather do AND a homework assignment to complete, but I really couldn't have done it without him. While my hand heals, lifting anything unwieldy is difficult, and bagging and loading the car would have been a nightmare. By the time today's supper was prepped, I was ready to collapse.

Of course, the help didn't come without a cost. The math worked out like a Mastercard ad:

20-pack of frozen sausage biscuits--$8.00
1/2 gallon of ice cream--$2.00
2 boxes of Cocoa Krispies--$4.00
Having some help...priceless.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

I am not a trooper


This stack of dishes almost brought me to tears this morning. You see, I was going to make Malt-o-Meal for breakfast, and I needed one of the big bowls so it didn't boil over in the microwave. Normally, this isn't a problem, but getting that bowl has become a tricky operation now that I'm down to one hand (and the left one, at that!).

After my fall Sunday and surgery Thursday, I've been in a lot of pain, and my right hand is even less usable than when it was first dislocated. So getting my bowl required a series of left-handed grabs of the upper bowls. I almost just skipped breakfast.

I like to think of myself as fairly tough, and this just shows me how false that image is. Far from the coal being turned to diamond, a little pressure and inconvenience is cracking me. And I have people around me struggling with far bigger problems--my best friend's father who is fighting cancer, my nephew who is recovering from serious injuries sustained in combat--to remind me just how lucky I am.

SO...rather than feel sorry for myself over a temporary inconvenience, I'm going to try and appreciate how lucky I am...and celebrate all the things I can now do with my left hand: put in and take out my contacts, semi-successfully use a fork, shower, text, and bandage my right hand. I'm also thankful that my sister-in-law just got me into running...because it looks like I'm off my bike for the next six weeks.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Hazards of having fun

On Sunday, Jim and I went bike riding with some friends on some local singletrack trails (basically, hiking trails for bikes). This was my first venture off-road, so I had a few falls (one about 5 minutes into our nearly 3 hour ride) and some seriously slow going. The trails were mostly dry, but there were a few wet and muddy spots, like this one (P.S. That's not me. I fell in less forgiving spots)...


I'm a huge wimp, so going up and down hills and through water and over logs was pretty intimidating. I got slightly braver as the day went on (not saying much), eventually inching through places like this


It's hard to tell from the picture, but this section is downhill to the sticks and then back up again. I was ridiculously excited to be able to do it. :)

We had a lot of fun and got ourselves (and our bikes!) super dirty. Here's Jim afterward.


My hand started hurting after that first fall, and when I took off my bike glove at the end I could see why. I had dislocated my right thumb. Nice. It would pop back into place, but it wouldn't stay there. Monday after work I visited first my doctor, then a hand specialist, then the hospital for x-rays, back to the hand specialist. It got me out of helping weed Jeff's dad's volleyball court, but not my first choice of how to spend the afternoon!

The end result was a splint until Thursday, when he's doing surgery to put two pins into my hand to keep my thumb in place until it heals. I'm not really excited about the idea, but it should be a lot easier to deal with than the cast that was the alternative! The bad news is that volleyball is out for the next six weeks, but the good news is that I can still run and ride my bike...on the road. The dirt trails will have to wait til the pins are out!