Hi, yes I am still here.

I’m here but I’m busy.

I haven’t forgotten the blog (again).

I just have very little down time at the moment and so blogging is pretty much the last thing I want to do.

Here is what I have to say:  No, I haven’t weighed myself yet.  But, I have bought the batteries for the scale.  I have forgotten about the whole no sugar thing.  And I can’t remember how many times per week I said I’d work out.  I’m hoping it’s 3.  If it’s not three then I’ve been slacking.

That is all.

Hypermobility

To be honest folks, I’ve felt like a loser for much of the past year.  It seems as though no matter how much work I do at the chiropractor, no matter how many massages I get to work out the tight areas…my back just won’t behave.  And you know something, I really sorta thought it was me, as though I were doing something wrong or I wasn’t trying hard enough.  And you know what that led to?  Me pushing myself too hard where I entered this cycle:  Push too hard.  Injury.  Heal.  Repeat.

And then my physical therapist commented, for seemingly the hundredth time, on how freakishly flexible I am. Why I thought to elaborate this one time,  I don’t know but… I mentioned that my sister and I think that my flexibility may be to something called Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (and after researching all the various types, I’d call myself Type III).  It’s also called familial hypermobility syndrome.  What does it mean?  It means the collagen in my body is improperly made, isn’t as strong as it should be and so I can do some strange things with my joints… which… you know, aren’t very stable.

Below are some photos of individuals with hypermobility.  I’ve only included photos of the things I, myself, can do.  There are others and not all of the things I can do are pictured here.  To be honest, I look at these pictures and, most of the time, I think to myself “can’t everyone do that?”  Apparently not.

This doesn’t even hurt.  At all.  Especially with my pinky finger.

This is the one that creeps people out the most, I guess.  I’ve known everyone can’t make their fingers bend like this but didn’t think much of it.

And apparently, not everyone’s skin does this when they’re fully hydrated.

And people really can’t make their hand look like this?  Really?

My stepmother used to make fun of me all the time for lounging around in the living room with my big toe sticking up.  Not that it’s stuck in that position, it just was comfortable.

Again, are we really not supposed to be able to do this?

And can’t most people do this?  I would think they could.

Anyway, there are other things associated with the syndrome which I also identify with.  I won’t go into all the gory details, but let me say that people with EDS often have neck problems (hello!  I feel like I could have my neck adjusted every day by the chiropractor.  It NEVER stays put.)  People with EDS are prone to subluxations and ankle sprains (just by walking?  yep, done that)… and you know what?  All of this makes me feel much better.

It’s not my fault my back won’t cooperate.  I’m doing the best I can.  Yes, I had to visit the chiropractor every week BEFORE The accident.  This is why.  Now, it seems like I try and I try but I can’t get my back to stay where I want it to be… and this is probably why.

What does all this have to do with my physical therapist?  She did a bit of research and was the one who actually said to me “no wonder you don’t seem to improve.”  She IS shaking up my routine now that she knows this but, it is so nice to know I’m not necessarily failing because I’m not trying hard enough.  And that, my friends, is a huge weight lifted from my shoulders.

(Incidentally, I sat up in bed the other day after waking and stretched a bit….and pulled my back out of place.  I felt it.  It hurt.  All it took was a normal, arms over your head stretch.  I wanted to cry.  That one stretch gave me a day and a half of stiff, sore neck and shoulder with reduced movement.)

 

Happy New Year

So here we are, a new year…. a new beginning… and my second blog post in two days.  Some of you may be shocked.

After I wrote yesterday’s post I began to ponder the whole resolution thing.  I love goals.  I think last year I posted something about goals and not resolutions.  What is a resolution, anyway?  It’s a goal that you make with no definite ending, no due date, no repercussions if you fail.

My goal for the year is simple:  Find myself again.

How does that work, exactly?  That’s a really good question.

My sister bought me a wonderful calendar for Christmas.  It’s a Story People calendar, and if you aren’t familiar with Story People… well I think you should check it out.  The art isn’t for everyone… but the words.. the words will move you.  I guarantee that, if you go to that site and click through the sayings… you will find something which speaks to you.

Anyway, the story for January is as follows:  We sat side by side in the morning light & looked out at the future together.

Touching, really.

January is the month I look to my future and I begin to set goals again.  I’ll share them with you.  Here are my goals for January:

  • Work out 5 days/week.
  • Buy a battery for my scale (yep, it’s dead) and face the music on my weight.
  • Stop eating sugar on Monday’s and Wednesdays.

Those are what I’d like to be doing by the end of January.  There are a few things to note:  One, I do count the work out I get at the chiropractor as a work out.  Two, I have signed up for a class (and paid money) which will take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays and while I’m excited, I’m also scared to death of showing up at the first one.  Nervous, I’m nervous.  Three, I’m dreading that whole stepping on the scale thing.  Four, the sugar thing will likely start out with JUST Monday’s with the hope that I’ll nix sugar on Wednesdays as well by the end of the month.  I eat too much sugar.  I crave it too much.  It gets out of hand.  I need to start treating it as a luxury and not an every day given thing.

As far as work outs go… I will continue to try to find my stride there.  Getting up and getting moving 5 times per week will be good enough to start.  I’ll find a fitness goal sometime…somewhere.

2012: A New Beginning

I don’t normally put much emphasis on the start of a new year.  I’ve never quite understood why people drink themselves into oblivion and then hoot and holler, kiss a stranger, or say “thank goodness” at the stroke of midnight.  I don’t get it.

I have to admit, I was happy to see 2010 leave.  I figure 2011 HAD to be better.

And, in many ways, it has been better.

In terms of exercise, weight loss (who am I fooling, weight maintenance), and healthy eating:  It has been plain awful.  I have reasons (excuses).   There have been a lot of setbacks in my recovery from my car accident.  I didn’t expect to still be feeling the effects.  I didn’t expect for my body to not feel the same even after all this time.  I really thought that, if I just worked hard and put more effort into it, started over a million times and refused to quit… well I thought all that would lead to me being back where I wanted to be:  Running.  Getting faster.  Going farther.  Meeting challenges head-on.

Instead, folks, I had to give up on running for the time being.  I gave it up officially a couple months ago.  I gave it up unofficially a bit before that – and then kept trying to do it anyway.  My back can’t take it.  I can run for about 5-7 minutes before I get that telltale ache in the right side of my back.  If I push through, I pay for it later.  If I don’t push through, well, I don’t seem to improve that way either.

I have to admit, the loss of running has devastated me.  I don’t know what to do.  I don’t know how to exercise without running.  For a girl who only started running in the last 2 years, I sure am lost without it.  It isn’t as easy to exercise.  It isn’t as convenient.  It doesn’t give me the same sense of satisfaction.

And so, naturally, I’ve sat on my ass for most of 2011.  Now granted, the first few months I was recovering.  But the rest of the year?  Yeah, I exercised a bit.  Not as much as I had before… and it slowly dwindled down to nothing…. or next to nothing.

In 2011, I gained 10 lbs.  I hate it.  I hate the way my clothes feel.  I hate the way it makes me feel about my body.  I hate the way it gives me a defeatist attitude.

In 2011, I pretty much slid as far backwards into my old eating habits as I possibly could.  I buy junk food.  I stare into my cupboards and opt for the easy and quick option rather than the healthy option.  I eat crap.

In 2011, I hit a wall.

And so, on the eve of the beginning of 2012, I return to my blog to say to anyone willing to read: “Hey.  I’m out here.  I’m struggling.  However, I can find my way again.  I can do this.  And if you want, you can read all about it.  And if you really want, you can walk with me on my journey.”

I hope everyone has a wonderful 2012.  Be safe.

Suddenly, I understand the urge to ring in 2012 with noise and celebration (if not drunken abandon and the kissing of strangers).

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