I met with the surgeon last week and finally was cleared to get rid of the God forsaken brace. As happy as I was to throw it in the dumpster, there were a lot of nerves (no pun intended) as well. That brace had held my head in place and up for six weeks. Removing it, meant muscles that hadn't been used in a long time, suddenly had to work. My neck does did not turn much at all, and my neck has been crazy sore, but there is a night and day difference between yesterday and today. There were a lot of good things that came out of the appointment, and anything that wasn't great - I'm choosing to not acknowledge. I will focus on the good and will get through it all. I am confident in that. I've been cleared to go back to work on Monday. I will have been off of work, nearly 2 months. For a time, the weeks were the longest of my life, to suddenly - shit that went by quickly.
I have physical therapy 3x a week as I try to get back to some normalcy. I've had enough p/t over the past two years, to last the rest of my life - but this stint is by far the hardest. I'm so much weaker than I thought it was. It's like starting over with so many things. In addition to being in the brace, there were a lot of muscles that hadn't been used for quite some time leading up to the surgery - my neck just wasn't working. So, I'm getting my ass handed to me on things that don't even use weight. It's crazy. I really underestimated this whole journey, but I am giving this recovery all I have. On top of p/t, there are exercises I have to do 3x day. I've also really been trying to get steps in. I have definitely over done it a few times, and I have to reel myself back in with the walking at times, but I'm really proud of that part of it all. The plate in my neck is solid, so walking a lot isn't going to hurt anything, but I've gone as far as my body will let me at times. It's still in healing mode and my body has its limits.
There is the physical scar from the surgery and a couple emotional scars as well. Thank God, they are all beginning to fade. Time and distance from the ugliness of surgery and the place it can take you, will hopefully all go away one day. In an effort to move forward with everything (and finally being in a place physically to do it), there have been a couple of outings. Tuesday night, a friend and I decided that day - that we were going to see Theresa Caputo (the Long Island Medium) speak. I think I may have mentioned before, that getting ill, made me aware that some people may really have this gift. We lucked out with front row tickets and a lot of the readings were done right (literally) next to us. (My friend said I should've worn my neck brace, so she would come talk to me- haha!) Hearing Theresa bring peace and comfort to so many that were hurting was really a neat experience. She did come up to me right at the end and say, "Wasn't I going to talk to you?" I thought she was, because she made definite eye contact with me several times, but then the lady directly behind me, said it was her, and she got the reading. She needed it more than me. One thing about being right in the middle of the action was, my friend and I were on the jumbotron A LOT. Let me tell you…..I was not pretty. I just kept thinking I look really fucking tired and fat…..I don't think the jumbotron does many people a lot of favors, but it wasn't easy to take in. I look tired, because I am. Sleeping doesn't go well, because I toss and turn, and I have a neck that's in constant pain - so I wake up often. It's hard to put together any good stretches of sleep. The weight…well, it is a lot higher than I wish it was. I finally got on the scale yesterday morning and only because I had a Dr. appointment later in the day and wanted to know. Honestly, I thought it would be much worse than it is. I might be up a few pounds from before the surgery, but going into it I wasn't happy with my weight. I take comfort in the fact, that living a more normal life is getting easier, and I'm making some better decisions now. It's also nice to be moving more. I'm excited to really get after this.
I met one of my very favorite people for lunch today. She's one of those people who always make me feel great about everything in my life. It's like she has a superpower and is so wonderful about spreading that around to so many. We are able to share whatever is going in our lives and try and work through our insecurities together. She ended our lunch date with, "The next time we meet, maybe we'll be able to figure it all out." I said, " Well, we didn't make any fucking progress today but maybe with help of wine - next time we'll solve all of the world's problems." So, here's to all of us and figuring it all out one step at a time. We are all in this together. Let's be the person that helps one another though it all. Cheers!
I'll leave you with a song I've heard tons of times over the years. Probably when it was released in the 70's and my mom had KSTK playing in the living room and again when it was re-released (I believe my junior year of h.s.) when Rod did it Unplugged. It's so funny how the meaning of music or how much the melody can speak to us in different ways over the years. I heard this recently and fell in love with it all over again. I bought it (yes, I'm probably the only person on the planet who still buys music on iTunes) when I recently made the CDs for my friend. Thank God for making CDs for other people, because I'm too cheap to purchase music otherwise. I do, however, keep a list of music I want on my phone, and then when it's mixed tape time, I'll finally break down and get it. Enjoy.