Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Spring Is In The Air

Well, spring has definitely sprung.

I woke up to a fresh bouquet of tulips this morning (god, I love that man), which really put a spring in my step. Yes, that pun was intended. It was awesome.
I'm definitely in spring mode. Maybe it's the break from work, which has allowed me to spend more time outside during the day. Maybe it's the fact that I finally have a yard of my own to cultivate and nurture and make beautiful. Maybe it's the fact that Easter is right around the corner. I dunno. But I'm loving it.

Monday, March 30, 2009


Sidenote...is there anything prettier (or better smelling) than a booming hyacinth in March?


6 Days Left

Well, my back-to-work countdown had begun anew.
I have 6 days of freedom left and then it's back to the coal mines for me.
This has been quite an experience, and although you couldn't pay me to re-break my wrist and go through surgery again (that's a lie - you could, but it would have to be at least 5 figures), the last week of disability is shaping up to be pretty good. Things are almost back to normal, other than the fact that I can't (shouldn't) drive or do anything too strenuous with my right hand, and life is starting to feel more like a vacation and less like a lay-up.
Good stuff.
After a highly-productive 4-day with Brian, he's back to work, but not before we managed to lay 3/4 of the carpet in the basement and began to tame that acre of out-of-control wildness we call the yard. Again, not being able to fully use my right hand has hindered my ability to really get down and dirty out there, but I managed to clean out the window box and start moving some of the rock along the walkway that somebody thought would look prettier than flowers and shrubs. I disagree. So the rocks have to go. And let's be honest, moving heavy rocks is a GREAT job for Brian, so he's been recruited for this job. Too bad he's working today, or I could make more progress. How dare he go to work when I have flowers to plant!

It's also running season again. Hooray! New sneakers, pants, and sports bras have been purchased, so the only thing left to do is get out there and get running.
Which I did today.
Which pretty much sucked, because I could barely push out a mile :-(
But no matter - there are 5k's to be run, and I'm sure that I will meet - nay - EXCEED last year's longest run of 5 miles. I'm determined.

Soooo...as for the rest of today? I'm thinking along the lines of cleaning out my car (it's bad. It's REALLY bad), tidying up the house, and maybe removing the 2 million miles of blue painter's tape we have up on the basement walls and ceilings. And then a nap.
Because I can :-)

Friday, March 27, 2009

Basement Bonanza

HolyCrapOnAStick I'm tired.
Brian and I were in rare form these past few days working like slaves on the basement. For the record, yes, I'm aware that the Great Flood Of '08 and subsequent Soggy Basement Massacre of '08 happened in the middle of December and yes, I'm aware that we're STILL working on the basement even though it's almost April. We've been busy, ok? Don't judge.

Getting the basement back to par was not an easy task. First of all, turning the concrete walls from a dingy beige to brilliant white took not one, not two, but THREE freakin' layers of paint. That was all done sometime between late December and this weekend and trust me, painting porous, well-textured concrete is no walk in the park. This weekend, we decided to attack all the borders and trim that we (ahemBriancough) wanted painted tan to match the carpet we planned on one day installing. God what a nightmare. We spent 9 hours yesterday painstakingly outlining all the trim in blue painter's tape, then applying 2 coats of brown paint. Did I mention I was painting with my left hand? Yeah, I have skillz. And I'll admit - it looks fantastic, but more than anything, I'm just happy that I'll never have to paint that sonofabitch trim again for as long as I live.
Here's a shot of Brian taping like a MF-er and me trying to paint with my left hand (do I look unhappy? Well, that's because I was. It was a long day)

I woke up exhausted, considering all that painting took probably ten times more effort than I've had to put forth since breaking my wrist. I also woke up with a cold, which was not conducive to work. But...we were on a roll. So after stopping to pick up carpet adhesive (and PANSYS!!!) we laid a significant amount of carpet today [get your mind out of the gutter], which went pretty well except when I walked through the adhesive in my slippers (because I'm an idiot) and knocked over one of those new-fangled, mercury-filled lightbulbs (because I'm a clumsy idiot).
Observe the basement in all its (half-finished) glory:

So, other than the mercury fall-out, I'd say the basement is comming along pretty darn well. Our goal is to finish carpeting by the end of the weekend, and then this project will FINALLY be crossed off our list and we can focus on the million other things we have to do to the house and yard. As for the rest of the night, Brian is out playing soccer (I don't know WHERE he gets the energy), so I'm thinking a hot shower and a cup of tea might just hit the spot...if I could just keep my nose from dripping snot for, like, 5 whole seconds. Eew, gross.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

When Almost Isn't Good Enough

I have several blogger "friends" who write a blog every Thursday called "TMI Thursdays," where they share personal, embarassing, and always disgusting stories about themselves and their friends.

Be Warned....this is my TMI Thursday post. It is not for the squemish or faint of heart.

And away we go

My wrist continues to improve on a daily basis. Every day, I can hold more, type longer, and function on a level that is a little closer to normal. Every time I realize I can do something with my right hand that I couldn't do before, I check it off in my brain. Brush my teeth: check. Take the cap off of the milk container: check. Carry an empty glass from the diswasher to the cabinet: check. The list continues to grow, and that makes me very, VERY happy.

There is, however, one action that I consider to be the holy grail of all achievements, the standard upon which all other actions are measured, the key to a life of normalcy:

Wiping my own ass.

Go ahead, laugh. Laugh all you want. Laugh until the tears squeeze out of your big, fat, judgemental eyes. But when you're done laughing, I invite you (ladies) to go to the bathroom, sit down on the toilet (make sure the seat is down), pee 'till your heart's content, and then try to wipe yourself with your left hand.
Now, allow ME to laugh while I watch you turn a typically routine process into an unsanitary urine fest.

Okay, now that you've walked a mile in my shoes (or at least taken a trip to the can in them), I'm sure you can totally sympathize with my predicament and understand why wiping my ass with my right hand would be a goal that makes me rest my head in my (recently washed and sanitized) hand, stare off into the distance, and sigh wistfully. Yeah, I used to do that when I was thinking about chocolate or cute shoes. Now I do it when I'm thinking about post-bathroom clean-up. Life is weird.

You see, wiping yourself requires the hand to bend forward from the wrist and twist considerably. Of course, if you want to do a really good job, a certain amount of pressure must be applied as well. My right hand does not possess the ability to bend OR twist to to the position required for proper sanitation. Heck, at this point, I can't even make CONTACT with the aforementioned area, let alone daub it with TP.

Oh, I make out well enought with my left hand. After 4 weeks of this nonesense, I've actually gotten quite good at it. But it's just....how do I put it? Just not the same. For one thing, time and TP are wasted in the process. Now time I have plenty of. But wasting TP makes me cringe. It's not very "green", and I hate to think that trees are being killed at a faster rate because I just wasted the last two gobs of TP missing the mark almost entirely. Plus, I often end up sacrificing my hand in the process, which requires rigorous washing with antibacterial soap, which in turn is making my hands dry and scratchy.

Overall, it's just not a good thing. So I wait.
I do the stretches assigned by my physical therapist and wait for the day when I can bend my wrist at an angle that is ideal for wiping my bottom.
Hey, a girl can dream, can't she?

*puts her head in her (recently sanitized) hand, stares into space wistfully, and sighs

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Things Left Unsaid

Let me get serious on y'all for a moment, if I may.

I'll admit it - I've become sort of a blog stalker. I think blogging is an amazing way to connect with people, and following a person's blog is a great way to walk a few miles in someone else's shoes. Blogs are also a great source of inspiration for me, and I got uber-inspired after reading a blog by Live It, Love It, which turn was inspired by Twenty Something Writers.

Everybody has things that they want to say, but never will. Everybody has things they know they should have said when they got the chance, but never did. These are some of mine. Judge me if you will...or...better yet...get inspired to say something that was left unsaid, even if it is said to an anonymous internet audience.
I've spent the past several years worrying about you and the choices you've made in your life. There were times when I was too outspoken about how I thought you should live your life. I'm sorry for this. You seem pretty happy and everybody has to make their own way, right? Just because I don't understand your choices doesn't mean I shouldn't respect them. I know that now. But for the record, I'll never stop worrying because I love you.

I'm sorry for the way our friendship ended. It wasn't you that I was mad at - I was mad at the fact that I was being influenced by people who had no right to tell me which friends I could keep and which friends I had to throw away. I threw you away. You didn't deserve that. I hope you're living a happy life, and think fondly of the times we spent together.

Thank you for allowing me so many 'sick days' growing up. I'm sure you're aware that a headachey, stomachachey, 24-hour illness rarely strikes that many times in one year, but you allowed me to stay home from school several times a year for just such an illness. I think you understood that, every now and again, you just need a day off. Your blind eye helped me get through many-a schoolyear, and I am grateful for this.

You are, far and away, the best thing that has ever happened to me. I tell you this all the time, but you never seem to believe me. Believe me. It's true.

I know you and I have established a quazi-relationship again, but don't think that just because we're talking again doesn't mean that I don't see right through your bullshit. My opinion of you hasn't changed much...I've just resigned myself to the fact that you should probably be in my life to some extent. Cut the crap, and maybe we can have a meaningful relationship again.

I've never forgive myself for the way I treated you, and I probably never will. That summer was probably the darkest, most confusing time in my entire life, and you were an innocent bystander that got caught in the crossfire. I hope the fact that I regret my actions every day is some small measure of comfort to you.

I can feel our friendship slipping away, and I think you're letting it happen. I don't know if I've offended you in some way, or if you're just too busy to pick up the phone and call me, but either way, you should know that it hurts. I consider(ed) you to be one of my closest friends, and it seems that you are very quietly and politely removing yourself from my life. Please reach out to me, because I'm tired of reaching out to you and getting nothing back. I'm about to give up.

There are days when I feel pity for you, but most of the time, I believe that you are probably one of the worst people on the face of this earth. Whatever goodness that was once in you got blotted out in an eclipse of hatred and anger and paranoia, and I suspect your life will dead-end in a not-so-good place. I'd like to say I wished otherwise, but if there is any sort of Karma or justice in the world, then bad things should and will happen to you. And all the while I will be smiling. I hope this fact rots in your soul.

You have bloomed into a beautiful, creative, original, insiteful, independent, shining woman. I'm glad I was with you from the start. I hope we never fall out of touch, and I can't wait to meet your children, whenever they are conceived and born. They will be so cool!

I truly believe you will find your knight-in-shining-armor some day. Don't give up. You're a wonderful person, and the right one will come along. I'm proud of you for not settling - you deserve nothing but the best. And in the meantime, I will always be there to share a bottle of wine with you, even if it is white ;-)

Phew! I'm done, and feeling a little like I just took all my clothes off in the middle of a crowded train station. And now I'm about to click "publish post" and expose a very private part of myself to the world (or, the 3 of you who actually read my blog).
I guess this is what one might call "therapeutic." I call it nuts.
Here goes nothing...

Monday, March 23, 2009

Fitness Revival

I've pretty much decided that the only thing worse than exercising is not exercising, which is not by any means an ideal situation, but at least I know what my options are. While exercising is sure to leave me sweaty and huffing and puffing and checking the clock every 30 seconds ("you mean I've only been running for 5 minutes? What the hell!"), not exercising leaves me flabby and jiggly and lethargic and pretty much just not a person I want to be. So, I guess it's back to the gym for me. Or, maybe not the gym, because I'm not really cleared to drive, and although I did manage to drive to the gym on Saturday, I risked life and limb and a big "We're not covering you" from the insurance company. Not smart.

So while the gym may not be a good idea, lest I risk some life-altering bill after slamming into a Benz, I've decided that I will find a way to exercise, whether it be Wii fitness or jump-roaping or running laps around the front yard (yes, I've considered this and yes, I'm aware of how goofy I'd look). Where there's a will there's a way, right? And when all else fails, there's always people to drive me to the gym, when they're available. Luckily, Brian's brother Scott is inbetween jobs right now, which makes him SUPER available and a perfect target for some gym whining. Score.

To enhance my motivation, I bought some great new work-out gear at the outlets in AC yesterday. Honestly, is there anything better than buying brand new sneakers for $30? Heaven...
And did I mention that when I weighed myself on the reliable gym scale, I had lost 4 pounds, which was awesome, until i realized that I've been eating like a cow and the only explanation is that I've lost 4 lbs of pure muscle? How unfair is that? I've been robbed! Somebody call the police!
So I'm off to reclaim my rightfully earned muscles. I'm sure they're there somewhere, under the jiggly mess that I've acquired as a consequence of eating too many tastycakes (thanks, mom).

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Let's Do This

Obviously, my plans for going back to work this upcoming Monday were unrealistic. Let's face it, I can't drive or even type for more than 20 minutes without considerable pain. The range of motion of my wrist is about 50% of what it should be, and my right hand is still mostly a flopping appendage at this point, unable to hold, squeeze, carry, push, or pull anything that weighs more than a pound or two.

But...I can do a heck of a lot more with it than I could do at this time last week.
For one thing, my incision has healed enough for me to take a decent shower - something that I am exceedingly grateful for. Baths are nice once in a while, but in reality, you're pretty much just lying in your own filth. Blech! I can also do a select few everyday tasks including but not limited to opening the refrigerator door, squeezing toothpaste out of the tube (sort of), typing several paragraphs, scratching the dog's heiney (he's more grateful for this ability than I am), signing my name, and dialing a cell phone.

While I'm far from 100%, I'm certainly happy that life is a little closer to resembling normal every day. Today, I might be able to kill two birds with one stone: I'm considering driving down the street to my gym to begin establishing some sort of workout routine - something that has been sorely missed and reminds me every day how far from normal my life still is. Granted, the gym is a mile down the road, and my workout will likely consist of about 20 minutes of power-walking on the treadmill, but hey, at this point, I'll take what I can get.

Don't get me wrong - the break from life was nice in some ways. There's something to be said for sleeping in every day, catching up on reading, and just lying back to let life progress without you. Heck, that's what vacations are all about. However, this little ride on the "Disability Express" has taught me that, despite my assertions that I am a lazy person, I'm really not that lazy. A few days off is good, but for me, a few weeks off is not nearly as nice. I'm ready to get back to normal. I'm ready wake up and be productive. I want to accomplish things and go places and improve my surroundings and go to bed tired from all that I've done. And it starts today. Today, I will take my life back, as much as my wrist will let me. Today I will do something - anything - other than watch time go by and wonder how to fill the hours. Today, I will type more, drive farther, and exercise harder than I have in the past month.
And that is awesome.
Hooray for getting back to normal. Let's Do This!!!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Once Again, Mother Nature Gets It Wrong

Happy First Day of Spring!!
Wait a minute...is that....is that snow?

Once again, Mother Nature gets it ass-backwards and decides to snow on the first day of spring. How rude! There's nothing sadder than seeing little yellow and purple crocus huddling together under a barrage of white snowflakes. Not. Cool. At. All. Spring is by far the most finicky of all seasons, and rarely fails to dissappoint on at least several occasions each year. This being one of them.
Looks like I'll be spending this first day of spring bundled in a sweatshirt and slippers, keeping a close proximity to the fire at all times. Ick.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Adventure Aquarium aka "The Happening Spot If You're Under The Age Of 7"

To combat my cabin fever, Brian took me to Adventure Aquarium in Camden today. Unfortunately, about 16 elementary schools had the same idea.

I can't complain - in all honesty, aquariums are great for kids. It was so refreshing to see a bunch of children running and exploring and pointing and saying "wow" instead of playing their videogames and screeming and generally being ill-raised. I'm not saying it wasn't a challenge to navigate the corriders lined with strollers and herds of schoolchildren (man, those kids are FAST and completely oblivious to anyone over the height of 4 feet), but it was great to see that children these days still get a sense of wonder and awe at the natural world.

And the sharks were wicked cool too :-)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Back-to-Work Countdown is DELAYED

Well, after my painful typing experience, review of my disability documents (which need to be faxed, like, now, before I miss the deadline for disability), and a talk with HR, it looks like my triumphant return to work will be delayed by at least one week. I'm now shooting for March 30, but I'm cleared by my Drs office through April 20. Crazy. So much for this miracle surgery that would have me "up and running in a week or two" according to my doctor. WRONG. I may be up and running, but driving and typing...not so much. Blah.

Back-to-Work Countdown

Well, I'm attempting to write this entire post using both left AND right hands - we'll see how that goes. I'm supposed to go back to work on Monday and I honestly have no clue if that is feasible in the least. As of today, I can type a bit, which is great, but I still can't drive, carry anything heavier than an empty cereal box, or put more than two pounds of pressure on anything with my right hand. Come to think of it, writing this post is really starting to hurt! Not a good sign, but I still have 4 days to go and the body is capable of amazing things. Or so I've heard.

Unfortunately, it turns out that spring is one of the worst times to break you wrist. The days are getting longer and warmer, which is ideal for numerous outdoor activities. I'm definitely getting antsy to start running again and get working on the yard, which needs considerable work. Aaah, well, all in good time.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Not good. Not good at all

I just read my work email and saw a request for an ominous Friday 3:00pm meeting followed by an even more ominous follow-up email from the owner of the company talking about staying positive through these "emotional" times and such. I called a bunch of people from work and nobody will get back to me.
Ugh I feel sick.
Somebody needs to call me back

Whoo, boy, there was a lay-off. 8 people up and terminated with almost no warning. 15% of our workforce is gone. Parking spots abound, even if you're 5 minutes late. Friends are lost. I'm sad, but greatful I still have a job (in theory, as I haven't been to work since February 20th).

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Things I've learned while out on disability

1. Surgery - even out-patient surgery - generally sucks
2. traffic barely changes between rush-hour and n0n-rush-hour times. where the heck is everybody going? dont you people have jobs?
3. it kills me to forego capitalization and punctuation while typing with my left hand, but i do it anyway to save time. a part of me dies everytime.
4. cats really do sleep 23 hours a day. dogs pretty much do too. i do too when im on pain meds
5. you never get too old to enjoy your mothers cooking
6. if you dont wash your hand, after a while, it starts to smell like a foot. and that is gross
7. if cutting your partners food into tiny pieces so she can eat isn't love, then i dont know what is. and on that note...
8. brian is awesome and has the patience of a saint
9. im generally quite susceptible to infomercials. if im awake at 5 am, i should read a book otherwise i might buy a home gym or a food dehydrater
10. typing this took about 13 minutes. im appalled.

and thanks to ellegant for giving me a blog award and leaving cheerful 'get well' comments. you made my day!

Monday, March 2, 2009

keep on truckin'

well, the good news is that my wrist is starting to heal a bit which means i can be up and about for short periods of time without passing out from the pain.

but the bad news is that come thursday (surgery day), i'll be right back where i started, if not worse. go figure. looks like im gonna need more tastycakes...