It’s been a while since I’ve posted, life sideswiping me in its typical fashion. The day-to-day is like a broom sometimes, sweeping me along until I think to put a foot down to stop it. The foot, in this case, was someone else’s. I was contacted by someone on Facebook and reminded why I started this blog. I got the chance to talk to her and, such kind words, it was like the first time someone ever told me they were a “fan” of my work. It’s humbling.
That one email also served as a reminder that I’m not alone and that I make a difference.
I’ve not wrapped in over a year, my last therapy sessions ending abruptly after only a few weeks. I continued wrapping for about 3 months on my own afterwards before the depression and exhaustion took hold. Not the kind of tired that a quick nap will fend off, but the overwhelming worn out that comes from wrapping and rewrapping multiple times every day. It can be debilitating if you let it take hold, so I stopped to regroup and live my life. The cost is losing ground on progress, though, so it is a trade off: Stay sane and off balance physically in order to research other options, or continue with risk of further physical damage and crawl into a dark hole. The latter isn’t really an option.
I have help when I wrap. My daughter helps me reroll bandages and my husband Val, bless him, helps me hold my leg aloft while I wrap. I have a hernia from my c-section, confirmed by a previous therapist last year, and have been instructed not-to-lift, not-to-bend, which leads to not-to-function. I was told not-to do dishes and not-to vacuum as well and my husband is the most understanding guy in the world. I can’t live my life like that, though, not being able to do ANYthing. I’m fairly independent, stubbornly so. I have no problem asking for help when I need it, I know my limits, but I cannot reconcile myself with the idea of putting my husband to work doing everything around the house after he gets home from his regular job. I’m not the sit-and-eat-bon-bons-all-day kind of girl, so I have had to come up with alternatives to my lack of therapy.
Giving up coffee and soda, my legs went down to half the size they were (which is huge) and became more pliable within a week. I have to force myself to drink water, easier some days than others, and it is the only thing I order when we are out aside from a sweet tea once in a while – which is probably just as bad, but I’ll pick my battles. I’m not perfect, I slip up sometimes, but the physical difference is apparent almost immediately.
I had thought that discontinuing the coffee would be the hardest, but I was wrong. The craving for that occasional soda is a lot worse. I can stave off the craving by having a sip of my husband’s if he gets one, which is better than drinking a whole one myself, or by drinking water, but the latter doesn’t always work. I’ll give myself infrequent coffee as a treat, but double up on my water intake. I’m weening myself off it successfully now and there is no guilt, I refuse to give in to it. It is what it is and I am making it happen in the way that works for me.
Growing up, somewhere in my 20s, I remember my ankles swelling. I camped almost every weekend with a medieval reenactment group and soda (especially Mountain Dew) was prolific with the other campers. I don’t remember what kind of soda we packed, it has been more than 12 years since I have been able to camp, but I remember somewhere along the line that my ankles would swell. If I’d had more than one, my ankles would get noticeably bigger (I hate the term “cankles”) and a friend would always tell me to stop drinking soda. He worked as an EMT in another county, but never mentioned LE. I backed off of it a little and started packing raspberry sweet tea in cans. The ankles stopped swelling, but the soda was always in reach so it was hard to avoid and a little ankle swelling got rationalized into a mixture of excuses – too hot out, walking in sand, too much standing, just get your feet up. Eventually I stopped drinking soda because I liked the tea and I put my feet up all the time. After that nothing noticeable happened until my pregnancy years later.
I am going to try to get on a schedule this end, posting at least weekly now that I know someone is actually seeing this. I’m feeling renewed and I’m hoping to incorporate a bit of artfulness into this space as well. If you have resources, please share them and I will add them to the page. I’m working on some freebies for download as well.
Till then, thank you for being here and hang in there, it means a lot.