Friday, June 04, 2010
Charlie Wedemeyer died yesterday. He was one of my heroes, though we never actually met. He was a local high school football coach before and after he was diagnosed with ALS. When I came to the Bay Area, through happy circumstance, I became a huge fan of the San Francisco Giants and, in particular, of their first baseman at the time, Will Clark. One year, I was blessed to have weekend season tickets - best seats I've ever had! That was also the year that Will was the team representative for major league baseball's ALS charity. (ALS is more commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease). One game during that season, they had ALS night
and I HAD to be there. (I never saw Gehrig play, but I admire him tremendously). Charlie was there to "throw" out the first pitch. He was already extremely limited by ALS and his wife actually threw the pitch. But he received huge ovations. During that time, he was on a cart riding around the edge of the field. I was standing, cheering and clapping as hard as I could (I can't whistle or I would have been doing that, too.). Charlie paused his waving and looked straight at me for a long few seconds and very slightly winked at me, as if he understood that I was more than a baseball fan at that moment. He was diagnosed with ALS in 1978 and told he had 3 years to live. The fact that he lived this long with that horrible disease is a tribute to his spirit and that of his family. I am heartbroken and crying, even though this is not a surprise. I pray for his family and for the researchers - this disease needs to be vanquished!
The other day, there was a story in the paper about a young man with cerebal palsy (I have a very mild case) who is a golfer. His attitude and determination are both inspirational and humbling. It brought me back to the summer I spent at Carrie Tingley Hospital in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico as a teen. I had surgery on my left Achilles tendon that summer so that, later, I would be able to walk with my feet flat on the ground. Up to that point, I walked on my toes. While I was at Carrie Tingley (she was the wife of a governor who served New Mexico years before), I saw other people my age and younger who would never be able to walk, no matter how many surgeries. I saw youngsters who would be restricted to a wheelchair or a bed all their life. I knew then that I NEVER have a reason to complain! I hate myself when I do slip into complaining because I have seen first hand how blessed I am! As I read about the golfer the other day, I was humbled. I don't like what I see in the mirror!
I have not overcome my own negative attitudes about exercise. Sure, I walk often, but I don't do much else. I don't enjoy strength training and I have yet to have success doing anything other than walking. It's so easy to say "just do it" and it is so hard to actually do it, especially if you have never ever done it before. It's not as if I was athletic before I got fat or that I am an athlete who has been on the DL due to injury. I don't even have exercise as a frame of reference in my life except for physical therapy. As a child, I had PT almost every day for years. I would scream in pain and, eventually, my stepfather allowed me to stop doing PT because he could not handle the screaming (I think I was about 10).
That being said, I have to figure out how to get over this hurdle. Inspirational examples such as Charlie, FDR and a million others shame me and make me look in the mirror, but they are not enough to get me going.
Yesterday, I said I had a sinus infection. I ran a really high fever almost all night and woke up this morning to realize it's a rather powerful summer cold. And I cannot take anything other than Tylenol until after Monday's procedure!
BF went to help a friend move furniture yesterday afternoon. I did not hear from him for hours until he called me at 1:30 in the morning to ask me to pick him up at the hospital 4 cities away. (That's a bit misleading. On the SF Peninsula, everything runs together as if it's all one city!). As near as I can gather, he blacked out. He does not know or remember what they told him, but I suspect it was his diabetes. He knows he needs to eat a certain way but has been rather casual about it. He is home now, resting and sounding much more like himself. I am at work wishing I were at home. My office is apart from others, though still a cube. I am really trying to stay away from people so I don't share germs.
The bland food diet has begun and I miss my broccoli! I miss my high fiber cereal! I miss all my great tasting healthy food!
My Achilles tendon is very, very, very sore. It has been for a few days and I am not sure why because I have not done anything extraordinary. That soreness may have contributed to yesterday's fall. I feel very still and immobile. It will pass, but, in the meantime, I am not moving much...
Charlotte's memorial service is June 12. I think I will go, though I seldom attend ceremonies of any type unless it's family.
I pray for her husband and children. My "God box" is getting very full, too full!
It is warmer today and is supposed to be increasingly warm over the next few days. I do not like heat, but the sun has sure felt good!
Despite the tone of this blog, I KNOW I have a zillion reasons to be thankful, and I am thankful. I have another zillion reasons to be happy and I would be more cognizant of that were it not for this cold! LOL
One of the things about which I am the most thankful is my Sparkfriends community. You may not realize how wonderfully uplifting your comments are on my page and on my blogs. I have gotten out of the habit of responding (time), but gratitude is there for certain!
I will never forget that moment when Charlie and I locked eyes. I knew I was in the presence of a strong man. He will always be one of my heroes!
Thursday, June 03, 2010
Those who saw yesterday's blog learned that today was going to be an off schedule day. Little did I know how off. I woke up with a massive sinus infection. I called in sick and skipped most of what I was going to do today (the court, the voting....)
I did go to Kaiser to pick up my prep stuff. Everyone in the pharmacy knew exactly what I was getting and they all told BF I was not going to like this...The phone appointment was supposed to be May 17 at 4:00. They did not call until the 21st in the middle of a workday morning. That should have been a clue. They told me the stuff would be waiting at the pharmacy. At least they told me the right pharmacy on the large Kaiser campus! They told me I would have to wait while they made the stuff. Not much I could do about it, but BF was not happy because he had just remembered he was late for a job at a friend's house (moving furniture or something). On the way back to the car, I fell hard on the asphalt sloping driveway. Both knees and my left wrist. I think I sprained the wrist. It is swollen and I can't wear my watch...And my elbow hurts. It will pass.
I learned how to fall years ago and usually fall to the left (I am right handed). The one time I didn't, I shattered my right elbow. It had to be rebuilt, 5 surgeries and an improperly healed wrist (they never x-rayed that far down until much later. It set itself in the cast, but not right). The arm is my personal weather barometer, as if I needed a back up! LOL
I told the boss I would definitely be at work tomorrow and I will be, but I won't do any OT and may not have a great day. I can only have Tylenol (regular) until the procedure is over Monday, so there's no way to unclog my sinuses. UGH
I have no appetite. In fact, not only did I not exercise (I can breathe only through my mouth), but I did not eat enough to have enough to run my food tracker! That's never happened before.
June is not starting off well! Except, today, my baby sister is 38! She's moving, so we emailed earlier in the week. My stepmother's birthday is Monday, so I have to remember to call her on Saturday because I won't be in talking form Sunday or Monday! Bland unhealthy food here I come....!
Thursday, June 03, 2010
Thank you, SparkFriends, for your support yesterday! You REALLY touched me!
Today was an amazing day! Just walking throughout the day, I got in something over 8K steps, 2.8 miles, so Eureka is closer! About 58 miles to go. My Achilles tendon started really hurting towards the end of the day, so I did not meet my 10K goal, but, by taking it easy this evening, I should be able to walk tomorrow.
(I have to, but that's later).
I am a member of Toastmasters at work and we had our open house today to invite new people to join. Our guest speaker was our VP of Legal. Sal used to be my direct boss and he is the one who got me started in my paralegal schooling. So, of course, I had to hear him speak!
They had pizza. I am someone who could eat an entire pizza, but I did not. Not even close. I knew they were having pizza earlier in the morning, so I looked up some info and made an informed choice. I had one slice. One slice! I got to take home a whole pizza and BF ate about 3 pieces before I even had my shoes off! I love the fact that I was not tempted to go back for seconds!
I am almost finished with a project at work that has taken over a week, so it feels great to see the light at the end of the tedious tunnel. It's amatter of comparing hard copy records to electronic records to an excel spreadsheet. YAWN!
This evening, I went to school and met with my mentor before class. I got there early and got some dinner at the cafe. I usually have beans and rice with salsa, but I knew I was low on everything, so I had what they call a naked burrito: rice, beans, cheese, guacamole, sour cream, chicken, lettuce....It was yummy! Because I have been eating so lightly lately, it felt as if it was a ton of food. But, when I entered it in my tracker, I was still within range! WOOHOO!
Class was cancelled, which we didn't know until moments before start time. I would have been unhappy to have driven there and spent that time, but it gave me a chance to visit with my mentor, eat something other than pizza and spend some time with a close friend who needs some TLC. She had some devastating news last week and needed my hugs tonight!
Tomorrow will be an offschedule day. I'm taking the morning off from work to go to civil court and watch (school assignment). Then I go to the Kaiser pharmacy to pick up the stuff I need for the weekend prep for my colonoscopy. I have to remember to get gas (I usually gas up for the week over the weekend, but did not last weekend). Stop and check the mail, remember to stop at the county office and turn in my absentee ballot (I didn't mail it in time). All except the post office is within walking distance in downtown.
Then hightail it back to work for the afternoon and, hopefully, some OT in the evening. (depends on my energy level).
I'm still not getting in the strength training nor enough walking and my walking is not really very cardio (I am a turtle!), but being as active as I am, such as it is, is far and away more than I have ever done. I blew past my intial yearly fitness goal on SP last week, When I started, I was not exercising at all, so I guess that's why my yearly total was supposed to be something over 4K minutes.
Thanks, again, for your support, your comments, your encouragement...
Wednesday, June 02, 2010
I had nothing to say, profound or otherwise, so I skipped blogging, knowing I was leaving points on the table.
I did not feel wonderful, not bad, just not good. I ended up eating a lot of carbos- that's the only thing that helps when my stomach hurts like that for no real reason. Today was like that as well. I cut short my walk today. But I made it through the day. Having instant mashed potatos tonight. I am sure I'll be back on track tomorrow...More than likely over on carbs and calories. I did not feel like eating for about 3 days and, since starting SP have had fewer than 5 days going over, so I am not going to beat myself up about it.
I hope so! I am tired of behaving like a couch potato!
The stomach issues are probably due to nerves, albeit unacknowledged. I am dreading Friday through Sunday as I do the prep for my colonoscopy....ugh!
Monday, May 31, 2010
Thank you, Spark Friends, for your encouragement! Today was more on target than yesterday...
I got a short walk in today. I am SORE from it, but it was ok. I was at a large open shopping center. I walked all over instead of driving. At one point, I very nearly tripped over a crack in the sidewalk as I got close to the traffic light. I am sure I looked really funny with arms flailing as I avoided falling. What the drivers waiting for the light to change could not know is that, pre-Spark, I would have done a face plant! My balance is improving!
So I am 2 more miles closer to Eureka on my virtual journey!
I am still under in nutrition, but I refuse to eat just to eat. I am pretty close to minimum in calories, low in carbs, fat and calcium as usual.
The scale showed I did not gain and I did not lose this week. My body says I've lost just by the way it feels and acts. I've mentioned before that, when I lose weight, I can feel the change in my center of balance every 5, 7 or 10 pounds. it makes me a bit off balance for a few days. Then it readjusts and I am fine until I get to another point.
Lunch at Chilis with my school friend was nice. The visit was great, the food was edible. I carefully ordered some grilled chicken with black beans and rice. The black beans and rice tasted better than the chicken! My friend is looking for work and quite stressed. I told her about SparkPeople when I started and we talked about it briefly. She has gained about as much as I have lost, but acknowledges she can't really cope with her weight issues until she lands a paying job. She is doing an internship (no pay) with the county DA's office, but there is no chance that she'll get hired because, like the state, the county is not hiring.
I colored my hair this morning and don't like it. I chose a color a couple of shades darker than usual. I had to hide the white/grey! I'll get used to it. I will have to color it again before graduation even though that's just a month away. We'll see what I find on sale closer to that date. I still need to get it cut, but think I'll do that after midmonth payday.
The day started after a glorious 8+ hours of sleep and I should head to bed so that tomorrow can start the same way! I have a paper to write and tributes to pay to honor those who have served, thank those who are serving and give thanks that my brother is home safely!
Some day, I will make it to Arlington to pay my respects to Frank L. Toner III. He was killed in Afghanistan 03/28/09. He was my brother's roommate and coworker. Our families are forever joined by this loss. RIP Frankie! May God comfort his parents, siblings, family and widow...and his service buddies who saw this happen.
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