Friday, July 31, 2009

Fallen Princesses... Creepy

This series from photographer Dina Goldstein is seriously disturbing in a non-grotesque way (except for Belle). Check out Fallen Princesses.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Emotional Blitz

Love is a funny thing. It can make you strong. It can make you weak. It can even make you crazy.

I thought the biggest battle after this surgery would be to just heal from it. But I have been fighting a battle just to TRY to heal. Stress increases inflammation, inflammation increases healing time. Simple enough solution, right? Stay away from stress. But unfortunately my stress is like a well-trained German shepherd, singly-focused on finding me and sinking its teeth into my arm.

I am dealing with a mentally ill person. I've encountered very few true cases of this in my life, and I will be honest, most of them I walked away from. I refused to let them bring chaos to my life. This one I cannot walk away from so easily. As much as I my instincts tell me to, I cannot. So I am embroiled in a battle of trying to protect myself from the emotional bombardment (especially because I am trying to physically heal right now), but feeling like I cannot let this person suffer or hurt their self. This is one of the toughest battles I've ever fought. I naturally tend to put others' feelings before my own -- my empathy knows no bounds -- but I want to protect myself, and I want to heal. So I have to watch this person suffer and find the strength to fight the guilt that goes along with putting my health and safety first. I pray every day they will seek professional help.

So here I am, hurting, full of stitches, fighting the fogginess in my head, and using what little strength I have to push down the emotions that rise when I allow myself to think.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Interesting Article on Authors Living in Colorado

This was actually a really great piece. Did you know that the founder of NUMA (National Underwater & Marine Agency), of Sahara fame, lives here? Check this out when you get a chance.

Writers 101: Which authors live in southern Colorado?

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Pushed It

Oops. I think I pushed myself a little too hard last night. I'm not feeling so great today.

My mom drove me over to LuluLemon for some sweat pants after work last night (I still can't drive. Wah.). They always have pants that are long enough for me, and the rise hits me just right, so I knew I'd find what I needed there. Indeed I did. I was still pretty brain-fogged, but I didn't hurt too bad, so I figured I was okay to keep going. We went up to Borders and looked around for about 15 minutes and then met my dad and brothers for dinner at Brio. The waitress was awful, but the food was excellent.

I woke up today HURTING, though. I think maybe it's a combination of pushing myself too much last night and, because my stitches don't hurt so bad anymore, I was turning onto my side in my sleep and there was no sharp pain to wake me up and make me shift to my back. I tried to go for a walk today at lunch and had to turn back pretty quickly.

But I'm still not taking any Vicodin. It's been a day and a half. Although I was tempted today, I resisted.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Progress

It's almost 2:30pm and I have not had to take any Vicodin yet today. Also, I look slightly less deformed now and my head is a little less cotton-y. Progress!

I was talking to a friend yesterday about stress and healing. It's amazing how they can work against each other. To really heal, you have to manage stress too. Easier said than done, of course. You might be able to control your immediate environment, and even control your reactions to a point -- but you cannot control other people.

I was able to take a short walk earlier today. It felt SO good. I'm slowly starting to feel more like myself again, and that includes wanting to get out and do things. I'm going to go on a short shopping trip tonight for more soft sweatpants. I have one pair of pants I can wear right now -- loose fleece, so they're soft and don't push on any of my stitches. I really want to go to the bookstore while I'm out, but I know that would be pushing it. Look at me rein myself in!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Not Deformed

I went to the doc first thing this morning so she could see my deformity first-hand.

Apparently the swelling is normal. She pointed at my distended stomach and said "Oh, that's just your colon occupying all that open space now. It'll settle back down in a few days." :-| Creepy! Then she pointed at the puckered scar near my left hip and said "Oh, that's a double-layer scar where we had to sew the muscle up. It'll probably smooth back out, but I'm not promising anything." Finally in reference to the rest of the swelling, she said, "Oh, that's just bruising." So apparently I'm not deformed, my body has just been through hell and back.

Would have been nice to know all this BEFOREHAND.

The good news is the pain is fading more every day, so I'm weaning off of painkillers. I figure in a few days I may even be able to drive! Next goal, writing. After that, yoga.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Deformed

It's Sunday night and I don't know where the last few days went. I've been in a Vicodin-induced haze. The pain has been manageable, though walking for more than a few minutes makes me so exhausted I get dizzy. But the swelling on the left side of my abdomen is insane. It's completely freaking me out. I feel deformed. My doc wants me to come in first thing in the morning to make sure it's nothing to be concerned about. That's all fine and dandy, but I was looking forward to getting back into my regular work routine right away.

I should mention, too, that I'm an emotional wreck. The waterworks won't shut off. It was easier when I was numb about everything. But I suppose this had to happen at some point. The thing is, I make terrible decisions when I'm emotional. So I'm trying desperately to keep a clear head. Easier said than done, of course.

My life is going to take some time to sort out. I realize this. But I've never done well in limbo. I need decisions made, goals set. Limbo makes me crazy. So I'm setting little goals for myself as I can. First, heal from the surgery. Second, start marriage counseling. I've got nothing beyond that yet.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Home from the Hospital

It's Friday evening and I just got home from the hospital. This surgery was supposed to be an outpatient procedure. So obviously some things went wrong. Some good news and bad news to share.

Bad news is that the cyst was endometrial and the size of a baseball. So it was difficult for the doc to remove, and the surgery took quite a bit longer than she planned. Also there was a lot of bleeding, which was the main reason they kept me overnight at the hospital. The pain was excruciating, and they didn't warn me about the shoulder pain I would be experiencing either (they had to fill my ribcage with air during the surgery, so now I've got carbon dioxide in my muscles). I woke in the middle of the night literally screaming. And apparently my lungs were collapsing and my blood pressure kept dropping as well, so it was good that I was in the hospital still. Another bit of bad news is I've got three pretty good-sized scars on my belly now. :(

The good news is there is no sign of endometriosis anywhere else. So now that the cyst has been removed, I'm as healthy as a horse. Yay! There's still a chance it will come back again, but for now the problem has been removed.

I'm at my parents' house now, trying not to move. It's amazing the things that your ab muscles engage in. I can't even clear my throat without flexing those tender muscles. It's going to be a painful recovery, but I'm hoping it will be quick.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Let the Chase Begin

I started my last blog shortly after a big life change. I figure it should end in the same way. And thus Chasing Myself was born out of the ashes of A Writer's Path.

I'm currently in Castle Rock, Colorado, trying to decide what to do with the pieces of my marriage. For the last few months I've been telling people that our marital problems were no one's fault, that neither of us was a bad guy. And I now realize how naive that was.

Fault can always be found. And some fault is bigger and more obvious than others.

It's a pet peeve of mine when people hint at things in their posts and then you have to pick at them to get more detail. So I'll try to spare you from that. I don't want to talk about what happened. All I want to say is I'm sorry, and we're trying to work through it so we both come out the other side with all our limbs intact. Ask me in a few weeks and I might be willing to tell you part of the saga. Right now it's all too raw.

I'm going in for surgery tomorrow. The doctors think I have an ovarian cyst and endometriosis, but they can't be sure until they cut me open. I'm looking forward to getting answers, although I'm terrified of the surgery itself. It's really a blessing in disguise, though, believe it or not. My life (except for my job, thank goodness) is in limbo right now. I have a lot of big, scary decisions to make. But I can't make any of them until after I'm healed from the surgery. So this surgery is a focus for me. It's one solid thing floating in the mire.

Random thought. There's an aspen tree outside the window next to me, and it's got a knot on it that looks like a big human eye staring straight at me. It's kinda freaking me out as I write this. LOL

I'm going to be on heavy painkillers for the next few days. So if I post at all, please forgive any strange writing.

The big authors of the world say you should write no matter your mood. But I've never been able to do that. When I'm upset or sad, I couldn't spin a tale to save my life. And I've always kinda beat myself up over that. I've realized recently, though, that I AM writing no matter my mood. I am still blogging and journaling. Maybe not heavily, but I'm still hitting the keyboard. So I'm going to quit beating myself up about that. And I'm going to try my best to be brave and post these blogs that you may judge me for.

I admire people like Heather Armstrong who post their lives so openly and can deal with the backlash from people who disagree with her. I've always been way too sensitive about what other people think of me. Heck, half of what I get published goes out under a pseudonym. I know it's not right that I care so much about other people's opinions. But it doesn't change the fact that I do. I've gotten in trouble for a few things I've posted over the years, and it has very nearly made me make my blog private. But dammit, I'm sick of being such a sissy! So for now I'm going to leave this blog open to the public.