Posts tagged ‘disability’

August 28, 2011

Tearing down the blocks

by Living with RSD: what comes next?

It’s been some time since I’ve last written. I’ve had some pretty bad writer’s block lately. I can’t say that I’m surprised. It kind of matches how I feel, I feel very far removed from my emotions and myself. Lost.
I’ve always been a person with direction, a Virgo for those of you who follow horoscopes. I typically have a plan B and do risk analysis before making major decisions. Even minor ones truthfully. But this block….I don’t have a plan. I’m just stuck. Nothing. I’ve got no plans.
A major breakthrough in my physical therapy has happened. I can now wear shoes other than tennis shoes. Big deal. Huge. Major. But I can’t seem to do anything about it. I have this block. I can’t go back to my old shoes. They will hurt me. Or, to be more clear, I will get hurt wearing them. The therapists have recommended the new shoes for me. I don’t want them. I want my old shoes. But, can’t have them. Only for special occasions. I need go move on. It breaks my heart.
Instead of moving on, I just stay in my Brooks Running shoes, even though I’m not allowed to run anymore. At least they have purple shoelaces.

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June 5, 2011

What I have learned from nature

by Living with RSD: what comes next?

I went to the National Zoo yesterday. Absolutely amazing animals. I fell in love with the clouded leopard. I don’t recall ever seeing fur so beautiful. It got me to thinking about all that I could learn from nature.
1. Even though I do love the clouded leopard, there are so many different furs and pelts that are just as beautiful. We were not all created to be the same. May be there is room for differences.
2. I love a monkey. Let me tell you why. Monkeys are smart. Monkeys don’t like to be limited by cages. But, monkeys make the best of it. They roll around, play and fling poo at each other. They are making the most of it and still having fun! Who couldn’t learn from a monkey?
3. Some animals are more popular than others. It reminded me of high school. But, that didn’t make the “less popular” animals less. They weren’t less intriguing, less fascinating or just plan less.
4. Mob mentality rules. At the panda house, everyone mobbed outside, where there were no pandas to be seen. They sat waiting and the crowd grew larger in anticipation of something that was never there. But, if you turned the corner, you got to see the panda. Sometimes, you can’t follow the mob. Make your own path.
5. The zoo is fun!

We topped the day off with a trip to Georgetown Cupcakes, which were absolutely wonderful and worth the wait in line. I’m trying to use what I learned from the zoo to be okay with the fact that I am different and lost a little of myself. It’s a slow process for me. I’m not sure that I’ll get there. In the meantime, I think the larger lesson learned was that every day is better when you top it off with a cupcake!

For my body budget, physically I feel spent. All of the walking and long easy burned me out. Emotionally, I am overflowing. The city and life has an energy all onto it’s own. It’s contagious. The big question of today is what will these energy levels help me get done today?

May 26, 2011

Jerseylicious, Paris and the Secret

by Living with RSD: what comes next?

You must be thinking that I’m crazy to even put Jerseylicious and Paris in the same posting. And…the Secret on top of that. Well, here’s my line of logic. I’m not proud to say that I’m a huge Jerseylicious fan, Team Olivia by the way. But, so be it. Jerseylicious is awesome and it reminds me of my recovery after surgery #3. I would watch it almost everyday on my DVR. When you’re on mega painkillers, it’s nothing but entertainment. I was catching up on this favorite show of mine to see what nutty thing they would do next. Olivia read the Secret and was creating a motivation board with pictures of all that she wanted out of life. On this board was a mad, cool car, a Savannah cat named Stiletto Daaahling, an apartment and new makeup brushes. She also had the long-term goal of creating her own makeup or fashion line. Apparently, in the book “The Secret”, the author talks about visualizing your goals, focusing on them all day and creating this board. By focusing your attention on these goals, you will manifest to come to be. So, back to the show, my darling Olivia got her apartment and her creepy boyfriend, Mikey, sent her the makeup brushes. I ask you this….who’s the crazy one? Really, Olivia and I aren’t that different besides her massive amount of Spandex that I could/would never wear outside of a gym.
Ahhh…meh oui. What about Paris? Well…that’s on my board. I want to take my daughter to Paris and see how beautiful this world can be. I want to travel. I want a happy family. I want to balance my budget and I really need to figure out how I’m going to spend the rest of my life living with a disability.
Your assignment…consider what you would put on your board? Even it’s just one small goal. The only thing that matters is that you say it aloud. Besides, who could it hurt? It’s kind of nice to dream and hope again.

May 15, 2011

Mixed blessings

by Living with RSD: what comes next?

I went to a baptism this morning. Baptisms always get me to thinking about renewals and original sin. Not to get too religious, some people believe that you are born a sinner by the flawed human nature. This pastor talked about how you are born with the word of God within you, as well, and if you listen and do the word of God, you will be blessed. Now, whatever version of God you choose to believe in, or not to believe, blessings was the word the really caught me. Can you honestly say that you can recognize the blessings that do exist in your life? Three years ago, I was in a car accident that radically changed how I can live my life. It didn’t change who I am. As I am now trying to cope with living with a disability, I have more trouble recognizing these blessings that must be there. I don’t feel unblessed, but I am not sure that I am feeling too blessed in my life. May be today serves as a reminder to look more carefully.

May 11, 2011

First day back at the gym

by Living with RSD: what comes next?

So, I survived my first day back at the gym, Zumba. It was nice to see the girls, but something sad about my limitations. I didn’t know the routines and felt frustrated by what I couldn’t do. I realized that it wasn’t apparent to everyone else that I was struggling. That was almost worse. It is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, I don’t want people to know that I have a disorder, on the other hand, it’s hard to be judged when people don’t know your limitations. I kept telling myself that it’s in my head. People don’t come to the gym to judge me. I’m having a hard time letting go of running, but I guess that is for another day. For today, I need to celebrate surviving my first day back at the gym.

April 14, 2011

Shoes in Holland

by Living with RSD: what comes next?

I don’t remember the shoes that I was wearing when I had the car accident, which is funny for me. I’ve always been about the shoes. Growing up, I never did try on my mother’s shoes. I wanted to tell my own story. When I got married, I had beautiful white Kenneth Cole Mary janes¬†with a sturdy heel since I would be on my feet. For all three of my surgeries, I wore my brown knit Uggs. My comfort shoes. When I broke my foot, I had cute Italian brown leather wedge sandals from J Crew. I was traveling in Santa Monica for business. Some people build their outfits around items of clothing. I build them around my shoes. I have RSD, or Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, in all four of my limbs. To manage the pain, I have two Spinal Neural Stimulators that have been implanted in a series of three surgeries. I take daily doses of nerve medication and supplements to manage pain. At this time, I also have PT twice a week. My team of doctors include a pain management specialist, my general practitioner, a neurosurgeon, an orthopedic and the team of physical therapists that torture me on a weekly basis. I could dwell on the inequity of life, how bad things happen to good people, etc. Really, I think mostly about the shoes. I am reminded of the poem, Welcome to Holland
Sometimes, life isn’t what we thought it was going to be, but that doesn’t make it bad.
So, my journey begins now. How to deal with the ever after. There are two pairs of shoes that I miss the most. My prized black patent leather Manolo Blahnik¬†Mary Janes and the running shoes that I wore for my first marathon. I don’t know if I’ll ever get back into those shoes, but I have hope. May be it won’t be those. May be there are new prizes ahead of me. I hear that Holland has those cute wooden flats.