Saturday, March 30, 2019

One Nice Thing A Day

Life throws us what seems to be a curve ball, and then we find out that the ball was thrown on purpose to teach us a lesson, maybe just one, and sometimes, many. 

As the last 6 weeks have passed since I broke my wrist and had the subsequent surgery, I've had a LOT of time to think. One thing that became very apparent to me was that even in such a predicament, I was putting others first, and sadly, at my own expense. What ended up happening was those "others" thought nothing of what I was going through, and only of themselves. I was deeply hurt, but then I realized that there was a lesson to be learned.

Somehow, we can get caught up in thinking that if we do nice things for ourselves, we are being selfish. The act of being selfish only comes about when one thinks ONLY of themselves. Being good to ourselves, making time for what we need, and what will bring joy into our lives is not about being selfish, but about nurturing. I think too that it can send a message to others, that we value ourselves. After all, how can we expect others to value us if we don't value our lives, our time, our health? And then too, there are times when doing what's right for us is saying that all too difficult word...no. How is it that the word "no" is one of the first words a child learns to say, and say easily, then over time, becomes one of the hardest words to say?

After the surgery, I was unable to wash my hair, and I knew that if my husband did it, well, it wouldn't be good. He is a precious man, but he is not a hairdresser ;) I had asked him to help me pull my hair up so I could wash my face. OMG!!!, I thought he was going to pull the hair out of my head. For those of you who have, or have had small children who fussed and cried when you tried to brush their hair, well, that was me. I sent him to the store to buy hair clips that I could use to pull my hair back with my left hand. I also decided that I would go and have my hair washed and blown dry. What a gift that was. I only went once a week, but truly, a gift. 

Whatever was used to sterilize my skin before the surgery wrecked havoc on my skin and nails. I couldn't do my nails, so I decided to make an appointment and have them done. What a gift, and how it lifted my spirit.

April 1st has always marked, at least for me, a time of new beginnings. This year that is especially true. April 1st will mark 6 weeks since the surgery, and it will be a bit of a graduation day for me. If all goes well, and I think it will, I was told that the surgeon will allow me to stop sleeping with the brace. Then, I should only have 2 more weeks of wearing it during the day. WooHoo!!! 

I've decided that as April 1st rolls around that I will give myself a challenge, do one nice thing a day for myself. As I thought more about my little challenge, I thought that maybe you too might like to join me. Doing something nice for yourself does not need to cost anything, and then, it might be splurging on something like getting a massage, or having a facial. Doing one nice thing a day doesn't need to take a lot of time. It could be something as simple as making a cup of tea and sitting down to read a chapter in a book that you have been longing to read. 
Two things to keep in mind;
It's something that you are being consciously aware of, not the normal things we do each and everyday, like take a shower and getting dressed. 
It is something special, something that will bring a bit of joy into your life.  

Here are a few ideas, a few things that I will be doing;

*Listen to a podcast  
*Finish that Blueprint class you signed up for ages ago
*Go for a walk
*Take a bubble bath
*Get a manicure
*Buy a bouquet of flowers, just for you!
*Make a commitment to be good to your skin
*Grab your cell phone, go for a walk and take pictures of flowers 
*Go to bed early one night, like...really early!
*Put on some music that you love and dance!
*Go to a coffee shop and buy your favorite drink
*Be conscious of everything you eat for 1 day
*Get a facial

I would love to hear your ideas for something special, something that will bring a bit of joy into your day. 

Beginning April 1st, I will be posting a picture of my one special thing for that day on Instagram. You are welcome to follow along if you would like. I know that not everyone is on Instagram, so my plan is to do a recap here on the blog on Fridays.

I think this will be a bit of a journey, a time of discovery, and most likely a challenge as it is so easy to allow life to happen, leaving us with barely enough time to breathe. A thought just occurred to me...maybe one day during the month, we just set aside a few minutes to sit quietly and breathe :) 

I hope that a few of you will join me. Who knows what it might mean in your life?!

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Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Back In The Saddle Again

Over the last 5 weeks, I have learned that what may seem the simplest of things, can mean the most. A friend picked me up for lunch. I was struggling with getting my utensils out of the napkin. The waiter saw my struggle, came over, said nothing, but simply took the roll from my hand and opened it for me. During the meal, I managed to spill sauce on the table, and basically made an absolute mess. Once again, he came over and made a joke about what I had done, a sweet joke that let me know he understood, and made me laugh. Earlier that morning, I had managed to make my breakfast, berries with yogurt and granola. As I went to pick up the bowl, I somehow hit the spoon and yogurt went everywhere, all over the cabinet, the floor, and me. I burst into tears. But, my husband calmly said, "don't worry, I'll clean it up." Then Berkley seized the moment and began "cleaning up" the mess. That dog is not going to miss an opportunity for food!

There are so many who have come to my aide, the hairdresser who washed my hair, dried it, took the time to add curls, and then cut her rate in half. She said that it was her gift to me :) A friend who knows how much I love a bowl of soup, and brought me a pot. Friends who brought me the loveliest yellow roses. Another friend who came to "pick up my mail," which was really just an excuse to come spend a little time with me. And then I would be remiss to not include all of the heartfelt messages that so many of you have sent. They have warmed my heart, and made me feel loved.

There have been some hard lessons learned as well, but in the end, good lessons, especially about where and how I want to spend my time. No, I am not ending the blog :) While breaking my wrist, especially my right wrist is not something I would want to repeat, I am grateful. I have been able to rest, contemplate, dream, and make decisions that otherwise would not have happened. A gift.

Earlier this winter, a friend came to visit. A new tradition that I have started is to take my guests to the fabric store and have them choose fabric for a set of pillowcases. They are so easy to make, and it gives them a little something from me to take home and hopefully, fondly remember their visit. 

I have tried to sew, but my hand would quickly begin to hurt. The therapist had told me that if I begin to feel pain, stop. So, I did. But, I kept trying. I did manage to hem a pair of pants last week. I was so proud that I immediately wore them! Reminded me of being a teenager and being so very excited to have made something new to wear ;) Again, a simple pleasure. 

Yesterday I sat down and actually made the 2 sets of pillowcases for my friend. I felt as though I had made a major accomplishment! I know that pillowcases are hardly something to get excited about, much less inspire, but I thought I would share them nonetheless.

I always let my guests pick out their own fabric. I wasn't so sure about the combination of fabrics, but in the end, I loved how the batiks worked with this set.      

She also chose the flannel for a set of winter cases. Super simple, but I think they will be quite cozy. A little side note, my friend lives in Seattle. I had gone to visit her a few years ago. The first night I was there, I thought I would freeze to death!!! That wet, cold air goes right through your bones! The next morning she got up and saw that I had put on insulated pants, a sweater, and was even wearing a knitted hat! From that point, until I left, she kept the wood stove stoked. I was so grateful!

I managed to cut out a simple knit dress. That's next on the agenda. To rediscover the joy of something I have taken for granted, a wonderful gift :)


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Sunday, March 24, 2019

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Friday, March 8, 2019

Broken Bones

Life has a way of taking twists and turns that we never expect.

I love everything about winter, winter sports, like snowshoeing and skiing, fires in the fireplace, wearing layers of clothing, wearing fabulous knitted items that I've made over the years, snow covered mountains, and the list goes on. But, this year, winter decided not to like me.

Three weeks ago, I went out to ski. It was a gorgeous day, bright sunshine, and the temperatures just right for optimum snow conditions. It was a quiet day on the hill, virtually no one around, my first run of the day, and I was feeling great. Then suddenly, my ski caught, on what I don't know, and the next thing I knew, I was tumbling down the hill. My husband was behind me. He said that I tumbled at least five times. I can remember thinking, "why am I not stopping?" I lost my skis, poles, and my googles even snapped off of my helmet. Then, my head slammed into the hill. Thankfully, I was wearing a helmet. Had I not been, I may not be writing today.

Once I came to a stop, my first thought was to get up, but I couldn't. The fall had really knocked the wind out of me. My body ached, and my head hurt. After a minute or so, I was finally able to roll over and sit up. A mountain host skied over and asked if I was okay. I said that I was. She wanted to call for the ski patrol to come with a snowmobile and take me down the mountain. I refused. Then my husband skied over with all of my lost equipment. She asked if he was with me, he said yes. Had I been alone, I think she would have insisted that I ride down rather than ski down. As she skied away, I looked up at my husband and said, "I just want to cry." But, I got up, got into my skis, skied down to the lift which I had to take in order to ultimately get to the bottom. Every muscle in my body shook, but by the time I made it to the final run to the bottom, my confidence returned. We went into the medics office where I was checked for a concussion. My husband was told that I should not be left alone for 24 hours, given a list of things to watch for, and I was told not to ski for at least 7 days. 

Somehow, I scraped up my face during the fall, and I could feel that my lip was swelling, so I popped into the restroom. As I was walking out to find my husband, a young guy called out, "ma'am, ma'am, are you okay?" Having just come from the medics office, and told of the possible things that would indicate a concussion, I wondered what I had done to alarm him. So I asked if I had stumbled. He said no, but that he and his friends were on the lift above me when I took the fall. He said. "it was violent!!!" He went on to say that they all felt so bad because they could do nothing to help me, then he added, "I just can't believe that you are actually walking."

By the next morning, everything that could hurt, hurt. I had pulled my leg muscles, groin muscles, neck muscles, abdominal muscles. Well, if it was a muscle, it hurt! I decided to just make the best of it, take it easy, and allow my body to heal. Or, so I thought...

The fall happened on a Tuesday. That Saturday, four days later, I took the dogs out for a walk, slipped on some ice, and broke my wrist. My husband had left for a quick out of town trip, so I was alone. When I fell, the muscles in my legs, groin, and abdomen were re-injured. If took everything I had just to get myself up. My wrist hurt like crazy, but I thought I could just shake it off, surely it was just bruised. I got a hold of the dogs, took about five steps, and knew that something was terribly wrong. 

I called a friend who dropped everything and rushed over to get me. I was able to catch my husband just before he boarded the plane. When we got to the hospital, I was immediately taken in. The nurse helped me get my coat off, and when he saw my arm, he said, "oh my!," and took a deep breath. My arm was pointed in one direction, and my hand in the opposite direction. I had actually broken both of the large bones that run from the wrist to the elbow.

This is me 3 hours later.  

I was told that due to the nature of the break, I would need surgery. Fortunately, they were able to get me in on Monday. I am now the proud new owner of a plate and matching screws that now hold my wrist in place ;)

At this point, I am 2 1/2 weeks out of surgery. The cast is off, but I have a brace that I will have to wear for another 6 weeks. The week of the surgery was incredibly difficult. I was in so much pain. I couldn't even stand the effort of getting in the bed. Since I had re-injured my muscles, any movement was almost more than I could stand, so I slept on the sofa. 

On a sweet note...
One night I awoke and felt a little body snuggling in around my legs. Somehow, Berkley had managed to get out of the bedroom and make his way to me.      

He and Gracie have been my constant companions :) 

When I fell and broke my wrist, my first thought was, "why did this have to happen?" Since then, I have thought often of the verse, "In all things give thanks."  This happened for a reason, not sure why, but in time, I will. 

Throughout this entire ordeal, I have had many blessings, a friend who was so calm under pressure, an incredibly attentive hospital staff, being able to get into surgery so quickly, sweet dogs to comfort me, and a husband who has been so understanding and helpful. Not being able to use my right hand has been an incredible learning experience, and humbling as well.

At my last rehab visit, the therapist had me hold a pair of scissors. I was told that I could begin to sew as long as I leave the brace on, and use my left hand to pick up fabric, etc. Each day I am feeling a little more like myself.

I'm looking forward to getting back into the swing of things!
Thanks for dropping by! :)

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