Wednesday, July 10, 2013
Erin woke up with a tonsil about the size of a golf ball, protruding into her throat enough to make it hard to breathe or swallow. So off we went to the ER. IV antibiotics and pain meds, a CT scan to determine whether it was abscessed (it was not), then more IV fluids and we finally left around 3:30 pm, 7 hours later--she has to go to her doc tomorrow, but insurance protocol dictates that this is an outpatient issue.
While we were trapped in the brightly lit, windowless, sterile ER environs, a stormaggedon had stricken Cleveland. We walked out of the cool, dry air conditioned air into what felt and looked like a tropical zombie apocalypse. There were tornado and flood watches, and lightning flashing in the sky.
We stopped to fill a prescription at CVS, where we were apparently a thought experiment in how long it took a person to lose the will to live. FINALLY the scrip was filled and we staggered on home.
Where, 15 minutes later, the power went out. And is still out. Lightning hit a tree directly in front of the fire station, and the tree ripped down a huge swathe of power lines.
So now I'm sitting here, typing on my iPhone by candlelight. The power isn't expected to be back on until sometime tomorrow. I have a huge work assignment that requires Internet, so I will probably spend tomorrow in a Panera.
Life, you can stop making anecdotes for me for a while. Really, I won't mind!
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
I was having a tough time pulling back out of the body crisis of Saturday's ride, and then a friend with LOTS of riding experience insisted that I eat potato chips: lots of salt and potassium.
And by gum if it didn't help LOADS. Potato chips. Who knew they could be health food?!
I will be reserving this little health tip only for specific times, like right before Pedal to the Point and right after. But it's nice to have one more item in the old arsenal.
In the meantime, my daughter is now flattened with an abscessed tonsil. We had to take her to Urgent Care this afternoon, and they want her to go and get it lanced and then see about having her tonsils out. She wants NOTHING to do with this plan.
When they're in their late 20s, you can't just bundle them into the car and carry them into the hospital anymore.
They gave her antibiotics, and I hope that does the job. She has a wedding to go to in Florida in two weeks, so tonsils out right now are a no--she is maid of honor, after all!
So, way too much health stuff going on here. Hoping for a boring rest of July, healthwise!
Sunday, July 07, 2013
I biked 35 miles yesterday, but they were not good miles. I had intended to make a 55-mile loop, but just 5 miles in (while watching the traffic light and the traffic instead of looking at the road) I hit a piece of rebar that caused my front tire to scoot out from under me, throwing me toward traffic that was starting to move. I stopped myself from falling into the street by *putting my hand on a moving car.*
Needless to say, I was sort of jangled with adrenaline by all that.
I biked 5 more miles, trying to get myself calmed down, but I was struggling. So when I got to a charming little village I pulled over, sat down on a bench, ate a banana, drank some water, and got myself calmer. I went on from there, headed south and slightly upstream into a mild headwind. I wasn't expecting to be fast, but I was surprised at how bad I felt. I had to stop and rest again after another 5 miles, and then at 18 miles, when I reached the top of a hill I simply had to throw myself down on the grass, gasping for air.
That's when I cut the ride short. I started back, and it was definitely easier, but every climb was doing me in WAY more than it should have. Stopped after 5 miles to buy a coke, and then after another 3 to buy some Gatorade. I texted hubby to let him know I might need a rescue, but decided to keep going. Stopped one last time about 4 miles from home to take shelter under a gas station for 10 minutes of absolute deluge, then made the final press for home.
About two blocks from home, I started wondering if I was having a heart attack. The road was flat, but I still felt terrible. I felt like I couldn't catch my breath at all. I briefly considered calling for a rescue but realized I could be home before he could get in the car and come get me.
Got home, told hubby my concerns, decided to take a shower to get the sweat off, and then noticed that I was fighting cramps in my thighs, feet, and calves. Sure sign of potassium deficiency. Decided that an immediate trip to ER was not necessary.
I'm still going to call my doctor on Monday and go in to get checked out. I don't feel 100% back to normal yet, but no real chest or back pain,
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
I am recovering from a stress fracture in my left foot. I am allowed to bike and swim, but not run for 6 weeks. Because of the change in my gait, I have to be careful not to walk too much because my knee starts hurting.
But I am barely able to keep myself off my feet today. I swam this morning, but because of timing I only got in 20 minutes. 20 minutes is not a tragic workout, but it's not as much as I would like. I biked an hour yesterday and almost 2 the day before, so a short workout today is in no way tragic. And yet I still am feeling nervous about the short workout.
On a regular basis, I am on here encouraging people with injuries to be patient with themselves and allow time for healing. But I'm very bad and taking my own advice.
Time to listen to my own good words. A little down time is a good idea when recovering from injuries. I will be fine. I will be fine. I will be fine.
Tuesday, June 25, 2013
On a Spark Team I lead, a woman posted a concern about her feelings of fatigue when performing a certain kind of exercise. A bunch of us jumped in to say, oh yeah, that's really common when you first start out because you are not performing the exercise in an efficient way, and here are some tips for how you can make it much more effective and less likely to cause injury.
"Oh, thank you," she said. "I just figured it was happening because I'm fat."
I've also seen topics where women went to the doctor for a problem and only got a diagnosis of "it's because you're fat; lose weight." Even when the problem had nothing to do with their body size. And these women just accepted that answer.
I've done it myself. When I only had one bike and was riding a lot, I was continually needing to adjust the seat height. "Well," I thought, "that's because you're so heavy. You're just making the seat go down."
Then I got my hybrid bike, and I never had a problem with the seat height changing on it. Still, it didn't occur to me that the problem might be mechanical rather than my fault until my daughter Erin started riding that bike and had the same seat-slip issue. That was when we finally took it to the bike shop and found out that the seat stem was the wrong diameter for the bike. Because it was Erin, I thought of doing something to fix the situation. When it was just me? Well, I just had to settle for what I could manage.
When you're fat, there is a lot of assumption by society that anything wrong with you is wrong because you are fat. And that you should be ashamed of your body size and simply endure the failure state of whatever is wrong, because it's clearly being caused by your fatness.
So we settle. We assume the guilt for any failure is in ourselves, not in the product or service that failed. We are too ashamed to even ask whether the problem might not be our fault; we just assume the failure is personal and, silently and in deep embarrassment, endure it.
It's time to stop that. Yes, there are situations where weight is a contributing factor to a problem, but we need to stop just assuming that weight is the only possible factor. We need to ask questions and really look at the answers. Because the first answer may be predicated on weight assumptions made by the person we're asking. If the answer is "you just have to deal with it," it's time to ask about alternatives.
We may be on this journey with the goal of losing that weight and getting into better shape, but that doesn't mean that we should punish ourselves by settling for now.
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