valentine’s day 2018

I’m lonely, and that’s good because I’m still looking. I’m lonely and that’s good because I didn’t do something I regret. ‎I’m lonely, and that’s good because I’m working on myself. ‎I’m lonely, but I still love myself. ‎I’m lonely, but I’m still happy.

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trip to nyc 4.28.2017

Trip number two of 2017: visiting Nancy and seeing Anastasia on Broadway.

Trip number two was a long time coming. I’m not a huge NYC fan, but I needed to see this show. Also, I hadn’t seen Nancy in maybe two-ish years. We bought tickets 4 months in advance for the opening week of Anastasia on Broadway . Nancy and I grew up on this movie and made everyone watch it for a Newman movie night in college. Obviously, we were ecstatic about it becoming a musical. So I drove to Jersey and stayed at her family’s house for the weekend. Nancy took me to some of her favorite restaurants. I got to chat with her family. We got pedicures too before we took the bus into the city – which is super affordable and super nauseating. I haven’t had motion sickness like that in a long while. It was worth it; the show was amazing. The set was beautiful. The characters were interesting. The music! The music was and is wonderful. We also found this neat salad chain called Chopt (which my company made glazed brick for several months later – so that’s cool). We went to the Central Park Zoo because I love zoos and will always pay to go watch animals all day long. Trip Rating: Excellent.

trip to boston 3.17.2017

Trip number one of 2017: St. Patrick’s Day weekend in Boston to see Dropkick Murphy’s.

This was the first trip of the year, and it was one that I wasn’t sure I wanted to make. I couldn’t decide if I wanted to save the money and go. I decided I would if we got a hotel and weren’t going to go too wild for St. Patrick’s. It was a perfect weekend trip. We got breakfast at a little corner shop and walked from there through Chinatown down to the Aquarium. We had a late lunch at an expensive seafood restaurant right on the water, then headed to the concert – which was awesome. On the way home we stopped at Howe Caverns which is as awesome now as it was when I was in eighth grade.

currently…december

 

Currently Reading: The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis. I started this in college and never finished it. I just bought a hardcover so I could restart it.

Currently Singing: True Colors by Justin Timberlake.

Currently Watching: Cheers…still. I’m half way through Season 2 of Stranger Things… finally, and I just saw The Last Jedi.

Currently Loving: The my knee seems a little better every day. I think I need to ice and elevate more than I am now, but my PT still thinks I’m doing very well.

Currently Celebrating: Christmas.

Currently Thinking: I could use a vacation.

Currently Worrying: That my car is going to need expensive repairs again. I’m not sure if I should put another grand into it or let it go.

Currently Hoping: That my financial assistance application will be processed soon for my medical expenses.

Currently Painting: Nothing… 😦

Currently Knitting: A big scarf that I’m not into any more.

Currently Crocheting: Nothing.

Currently Considering: What colors I am going to paint the rooms in my house once the sale finally closes.

Currently Hating: That with recovery of my knee has come weight gain… some muscle and some fat.

Currently Trying: To Bullet Journal more regularly and set daily goals and plans.

Currently Thankful for: My brother visiting.

ACL Reconstruction

One day before: I woke up this morning thinking about how all the turning and stretching I did as I woke up will no longer be an option after tomorrow. I hiked at Stony Brook yesterday with Charlie and Rachael as a final “hoorah” before I become immobile. Having driven past the park after PT last Friday, I realized I had not been there yet this summer.  We walked the West Rim Trail which is one I don’t normally do. So. MANY. Stairs. I hope I’m not too sore tomorrow – I am usually the most sore two days after a tough workout. I ordered a foam mattress wedge to elevate my leg and a foam roller for stretching. Tonight, I plan to make plenty of meals to eat over the next few days. I’m going to bring a shelf downstairs to keep books, magazines, knitting supplies, and my laptop on hand. I plan on sleeping in the recliner for a few days before attempting the stairs. I’m not looking forward to sleeping on my back. This is going to be an experience.

One day after surgery: As someone who is healthy, doesn’t go to the doctor that often, and has never broken a bone, I describe surgery as a surreal experience. I know for those who work in medicine it is reality, but for me, it was like a TV show. So many people come into the room. They ask me my name, date of birth, and to confirm the nature of my visit (ACL reconstruction, left knee). They give me the nerve block in my upper thigh, and I make jokes about my hole-y underwear. I was rolled to the operating room, moved to a new bed, and pumped with the anesthesia. I woke up nauseated and uncomfortable with a full length brace on my leg. I was so sleepy and sick. They kept trying to get me up, but I kept fading. Sleeping felt better than nauseated and sore. I threw up after using the bathroom. Then I got in the car and went home.

Day two post-surgery: The nerve block wore off this morning at 2:30 AM and the pain level went up to about a 9. It took awhile for the pain meds to kick in, and I cried and moaned quite a bit. When I woke up around 8AM, I was nauseated and tried to eat, but it came back up. I didn’t keep a meal down all day. I continued to sleep on the recliner with my leg on the foam wedge and pillows. I wasn’t too uncomfortable – making adjustments for my back as needed. My little sister helped me from the minute I got home. She didn’t like me getting up to use the bathroom without letting her know. An excellent aide.

Day three: My arms and right leg started feeling the burn. My shoulders, biceps, and traps took the brunt of it. I assume my triceps will strengthen as well. I still felt nauseated but was able to keep food down.

Five days post-surgery:  I slept in my bed for the first time since surgery, and it was amazing. This was the most mentally taxing day post-surgery. I had physical therapy today which went great, but the trip, with the walking around and being vertical, was exhausting. The good news is that I am healing perfectly. My legs aren’t that swollen, the incision was hardly bloody, and I’m in very little pain. The past two days, I’ve only taken one pain med with dinner. I’m struggling with quad isolations (which I think is from being so reliant on my right leg over the past seven months). The bad news is that the doctor had to repair damage on both my medial and lateral menisci. I will be on crutches, ie. not weight bearing, for 6 weeks. The pain from the lateral meniscus was what had finally made me get the MRI. I knew the menisci were damaged, but I hadn’t planned for this. The reality of being crutch-bound for so long set in on the drive home. After thinking about not being able to take my dog out on our daily adventures week after week, I finally cried. I know it’s temporary, but Charlie is so frustrated with me. I love taking him to the park. I love walking trails with him. It’s a huge sacrifice for both of us. I’m mad at myself for getting injured. I keep telling myself I am going to be stronger afterwards. I’m finally going to heal this injury. Today I couldn’t shake it off though.

Three weeks post-surgery: I haven’t taken the prescriptions since Day 5. I take Acetaminophen every few hours for the anti-inflammatory benefits. I can lower myself into the tub to take a shower. My stretching and exercise are going well. I can straighten and bend a lot better this week. I can feel the tension in the patellar tendon easing. I can even cross my left leg over my right. The calf pumps and quad exercises are definitely building the strength again. I’m also really good at sitting down and getting up with one leg. However, I’m really tired of the crutches. I want to walk so bad. I hate crutching up and down stairs. It’s hard not being able to carry anything. I had been hopping a lot, but I think I pulled a tendon in my right calf yesterday. It’s sore today so I can’t hop. I have to carry something in one hand and hold the crutch in my armpit AND GO SLOWLY. In 20 days, I get another brace and can start walking, hopefully.

Four weeks post-surgery: My right leg feels better after going easier on it the past week. Overall, the Acetaminophen is helping a great deal for my injured knee. I noticed a decrease in swelling over the top of my knee – which is what is making extension difficult for me. I’m struggling to go from extension to flexion smoothly. I feel pain in the back of my knee during extension and tension in the front when flexing – obviously.  I hate to admit it, but I haven’t been as consistent with my exercises because I’m feeling down about being unable to walk and not being able to work. Originally, they wanted me to work from home, but if I want to stay on top of my exercises I’m spending about six hours a day stretching and strengthening. Then add eating, bathing, and going to the bathroom -ON CRUTCHES- and there goes my day. I don’t get to the computer until six or seven at night.  Plus, sleeping in a brace does not get easier the longer you wear it, at least not for me.

Fourteen Weeks post-surgery: My extension is good but I still can’t do much more than -3 degrees. My right leg is at about -5, so the injured knee is definitely not as flexible yet. My physical therapist says I’m doing great, and they are impressed with my progress. I have been putting the functional ACL brace on less, and I actually have been experiencing less pain without it.  I’m doing more walking and less stretching at work. The main place I experience a little pain is where the arthroscopic insertion was. It may also be the meniscus repair on that side. I went back to work at about Week 8 after getting the functional ACL brace. The doctor cleared me for desk duty. The first few weeks with the new brace I spent most of the day on the computer. I needed to keep it straightened or else it would stiffen up and make walking tough.

2017 is almost over…

life currently (2)

… and I haven’t written in awhile. I almost asked myself why even bother sharing my thoughts with the ether, but I know how much it positively affects my mental state. So I am back here.

I think the thing I miss most about logging on and putting my thoughts down in words is reflecting on my goals and weaknesses. I use a daily planner for every day To Do lists, but I don’t take the time to think about myself as much as I used to.

Part of that is because I’m not as worried about “making the right decisions” anymore. I know that life is not about making the right decisions but rather about finding your way day by day.

I had knee surgery. I had an accident with Charlie. I gained some weight. I went back to work and picked up another part-time shift.  I currently work 40 hours plus an additional 3 shifts at the Knights. I got a raise at my day job – the one I asked for a year ago. I’m going to close on a house soon.

Life is happening to me.

My most important goal was paying down my student loan debt, but then I started to like my job and started to hate my living situation. I recognize that I’m so lucky to have to home I have now with my sister. We just can’t live together and be happy. It never worked when we were little. It hasn’t been working now.

So, I got excited about the idea of having my own place, and my mom – with her newly earned real estate license – starting looking. My budget was small, and I know that means a lot of paint and a lot of patience until I have a home that is modern and mine. I found the house that I was looking for. I have plans for an office and a shop room and a guest bedroom with a screen projector for movie nights. I will have room for an additional freezer for the game I harvest. I will have a garage to put a canoe. I will have little view of the river. I will have my own bathroom!

I’m grateful. I’m grateful for my jobs. I’m grateful for my family. I know I’m single and 25 all alone in a house, but I have my doggo. I have my parents and grandparents within ten miles. I’m scared and worried and a little disappointed that I’m taking out more loans rather than paying them off, but mostly, I’m excited.