Tag Archives: pain

12,000 Steps

The trip started out like most…The bus will drop you off here and you can wander about until 2:30 when the bus will pick you up at this exact spot. Shop, eat, and enjoy the Ambiance that is Edinburgh. I was on a mission. I needed to get some English Currency. I was told the best exchange rate was at the Post Office, and due to the Queen’s Jubilee, everyone else in the country had the same thought. 2 of the places we’d stopped on the tour were several miles’ walk from our hotel or any of the city tours we went on so when we got to a post office that was close enough, Pitlochry, there was a 45-minute wait to get INTO the building. We ran out of time. Now was my chance. The Exchange was a mere 3 blocks from where the bus dropped me off!

I headed from the St. Andrews and St. George Church on George Street down to Sir Walter Scott’s memorial on Princes Street.

Then I went to the Mall and changed my money. From there, I went back up the hill to the bus collection point. It was 1:30. The bus was going to pick us up at 2:30. I wanted to sit down, but the beggar was not pleased that I was encroaching on her territory. I had no interest in wandering around the shops and I wasn’t hungry, so I sat. I got a wifi connection and thought, “Hmmm, I could locate the hotel and see if I could walk from here rather than waiting an hour.” Sure enough, the hotel was just a 20-minute walk from my location! I checked out my location and looked on my map, and noticed my battery was nearly in the red. I decided to go to my next turn before I turned on my phone again.

I walked back to Scott’s Memorial and headed in the direction my map told me to go. I could see the castle from the street, so I kept that on my left and headed out. There was a wonderful park, and it wasn’t long before I heard band music. The Royal Marines were putting on a concert in the bandstand. They were playing a medley of John Williams tunes. I got to an intersection and found a bench. It had been 15 min, so I had to be close. I looked at my map and discovered I was on the right trail, but I was firmly in the red now. I headed up across the bridge.

I passed the Hanging Bat and the Raging Bull, but somehow that didn’t spark any inspiration to eat. You may not know this, but Edinburgh was one of the first planned cities…set out on a grid. News flash. Weird looking grid. So I come to an intersection of 4 streets…(grid?) Lauriston Pl, West Toll Cross, Home Street, Lothian Road (A7?). Normally, there would be 2: Lothian Road, and one other, but no…Lauriston Pl turns INTO West Toll Cross, Home Street goes approximately 60 degrees south of Lothian Road. Uh Oh.

I stayed on Lothian Road. My phone is officially dead. It is now after 2:00. I should be in sight of the hotel. I am not. I walk further on Lothian road and now nothing looks familiar. I stop at a food truck and ask for directions. Lady gets out her phone. She lives in this neighborhood, but has never heard of my hotel? Then I hear the fateful words that will get repeated to me throughout the rest of my tale: “OK, just go this way for about a mile and a half…” and they point to the way I just came.

I smiled and asked if I could take her phone with me. I had to explain that I was kidding. Oh…Kay… I began thinking if she was pointing me back to where I had just come, wouldn’t I have seen this place on my way here? I headed back down the hill then I recalled that on her phone map, there was the Novotel. We had passed it twice since we got to Edinburgh, so I knew it was a crucial landmark and headed for that.

I FOUND Novotel and walked into the pub attached to the building. I asked the bartender where the Leonardo Royal was and guess what he said… That’s right. He pointed back to where I’d just come and said it was a 13-minute walk according to his phone. Or, I could take the #2 bus. Oh? Where was the bus stop? He said it was down at the bottom of the hill to the left. It was now 2:30. He said they come about every 15 minutes. What he didn’t tell me was that the bus goes 2 directions and they only take exact change. I had a 20-pound note and I wasn’t going to pay 20 pounds for a 1.06-pound fare.

I headed down to the bus stop Where there was a couple from Arkansas also waiting. She had a phone with GPS. “OH! No Problem! Y’all jist go down the hill there and catch Bread Street? Then ya jist turn onto Morrison Street and then to Morrison link.” Now she’s saying that as if she’d lived in, um, Southern Edinburgh…because of her accent. Then she pointed me in the wrong direction. If I could have looked at her phone, I would have been able to tell she had it oriented wrong. I’m good at reading maps. So I headed down the street in the wrong direction. Nothing looked familiar. I stopped at a clothing shop and asked the lady at the desk who had a phone.

This is what I don’t understand. I have lived in my current house for 22 years. I have no idea what my neighbors’ names are, but I know where 2 hospitals, 3 emergency rooms, 4 grocery stores, and at least 15 restaurants are near my neighborhood. I worked 1 year at the Hardee’s on the interstate and could tell you where all the hotels in the area were, and where to get your car fixed and your prescriptions filled. I worked 6 years at the financial office and could tell you every restaurant in a 6-block radius, the music store, the clothing stores, the bus stops, and where to get the best ice cream. The people that I asked were NATIVES of the city, and had lived most of their lives there, and yet not a single person had any idea where the hotel district was (and there were 8 hotels in a 2-block area. You’d think that would stand out!) and had never heard of the Leonardo.

So the nice lady points me back to where I came…It’s a 20-min walk. Now I’ve been on this 20-minute walk for over 1 1/2 hours. It’s getting close to 3:15. I head back up to the Novotel and on the way, I see my Arkansas friends. I told them that I never found Bread street. Oh well. This time I walk East of the Novotel and enjoy the sights. Because…nothing looks familiar. It is now 3:30. You may ask how I know since my phone/clock/map/internet/paperweight is dead. There are clocks on the schools, clocks on the churches, clocks on the time/temp displays in front of the stores and banks… I have officially missed the bus to the Britannia dinner and tour. My group has no idea where I am, and I can’t call my husband to let him know I’m alright. I’m in some sort of educational area, schools everywhere. They look like ghost towns. So I turn around and head back to the Novotel.

There, in front of the hotel, is a coach with its driver. It is a tour coach. Surely this driver has taken his charges to other hotels in the area. He would know! So I go and ask him. He hasn’t a clue. By now, I have discovered there are TWO Leonardo Royal hotels. One is old and picturesque, and one is new. Every time I asked for directions, they tried to send me to the old one which I passed several times before I saw that it WAS a Leonardo Hotel. I probably could have walked in and explained my situation to them and they might have been able to get me to the right one.

The picturesque Leonardo was TWO blocks from the Novotel, and the guy who had sent me to the bus stop had no idea it was there. The new one was about 6 blocks from the hotel and he had no idea THAT one was there. The Coach driver had never delivered tourists to either one. He suggested I take a taxi. “Where am I going to get a taxi?!!!” (Frustrated much?) And while I’m speaking, one pulls up and drops off some tourists. The Coach driver talks to the taxi driver and tells him I need to go to the Leonardo in the Haymarket district. Much to my surprise, he enters into HIS GPS. Oh! it’s not far. It’s now 4:15

He easily finds the place, and due to the fact that every one-way street is going the wrong way, we have to go a longer route than I would have had I walked. I get to the hotel about 4:30 and wait 5 min in line to talk to the concierge. I tell him I’ve become separated from my group and could he call the tour guide to let him know I am alive and well and going to soak in my tub? He was aghast. “They left over an hour ago!!” “I know.” He has the wrong tour group on his “current” list and cannot call him. I get to my room and plug in my phone.

For the 1st time on this tour, I have handicapped facilities, and I COULD take a nice soak in the tub…if it had a drain plug. So, at 4:45, I Facebook messaged my friend Jeremy to let my husband and the tour guide know I was safe and sound. Then I changed into my PJs and went to bed. Even though my paperweight was dead, it kept counting steps…12,000 steps. The most I had walked before this was the 10K steps in Heathrow Airport before my flight home the first week in April. My normal is usually less than 1000.

Best I can guess, this was part of my route.

It appears that on every trip I take, I have to have some alone time…so I get lost? No more shortcuts for me!

I’m Fat

I was listening to a show on NPR this morning and they did an issue about obese people. Fat people haven’t always been considered gross and disgusting. Botticelli and Raphael featured full-figured women in their paintings.

   

Now, they are considered lazy, undisciplined, and weak.  Wait?  What does that have to do with weight? Do people think that fat people just don’t care about how they look?  And it is alllllll about how people look isn’t it.  Observe in the pictures that the women do not have defined abs and muscular shoulders. Normal people cannot attain that measure of fitness, but we’re shamed by the fact that we don’t.

The woman in the interview said she came out to her family and friends that she was fat. This was not news to the people she told. She didn’t do it for them, she did it for herself. She now defined herself as a fat person. How can weight define a person?  That’s ridiculous! She had some valid points though.

People view fat people in two different ways. Sloppy, lazy, undisciplined, weak fatties, and fat people trying to get thinner. They patronize the fat people trying to get thinner. They shame the fat people they perceive aren’t trying. They complain about sitting next to them on public transportation, in movie theaters, at events, because they take up soooo much space! They consider fat rolls gross. They make fun of women of significant size in leggings.

What do I mean about patronizing fat people trying to get thinner? “Oh, you just have to eat more salads!”  “You should try this exercise.” “Are you going to eat all of that?!” I have news for those well-meaning people. You couldn’t keep up with me in the gym. That’s right.  You heard me. I do 90 pounds on the crunch machine. I do 70 pounds on the lat pull machine. I do 15-20 pound biceps curls. I do 80-pound leg presses. I can go 30 min on an elliptical machine on level 6. I do 90 crunches and 45 push-ups. I live on about 1200 calories a day. I do not eat burgers and fries three times a day–more like 3 times in a month. I have pizza twice a month. So yes, some of us are really trying to lose the weight. It is NOT however because we can’t find clothes that don’t look like circus tents or Macy’s white sale bedding. It is NOT because eventually, we’ll be diabetic. It is NOT because we feel guilty that our “fat-related” illnesses are a drain on the public health system.

Why do we try so hard? Because we remember how it felt to be thinner. We remember not having to have help getting out of the couch or the car. We remember not wheezing when we went up the stairs. We remember not hurting when we walked long distances. We remember being able to walk into a store and just buy something because it looked cute. We remember knees and ankles and backs that didn’t crack when we moved. We remember running to fly kites and taking hikes and climbing trees.

My Fat does not define me. (Obie is surprised–Obie is my sentient fat by the way.) My size does not determine my intelligence, my work ethic or my self-discipline. It does restrict my activities and how I feel.

I am fat. And I don’t like it. And I’m working to get rid of that fat.

CW challenge: They all died, I survived

They knew

They all knew

The Parents

The Teachers

The counselors

They knew

We weren’t crying

for help

We didn’t want

help

We held life and death in

the palms of our hands

We weren’t weak

We were determined

Hold hands, 3 of us

1…2…3 JUMP

cold icy water

my foot hurts–no my ankle

why do I feel pain?

Struggle to surface

Why struggle?

Current moves me

Pain

Inhale water

But I can’t

Blow out all air

but I can’t

Rock in my side

Branch on my arm

Roll to back

Cough…cry

Strong hands pull me out

I failed

They didn’t

Alone

 

 

I don’t believe it!

I have spent the better of 1 hour on my feet.  I now have to sit down and rest.  Then I’ll get up again and spend about 1/2 hour on my feet.  Then sit down.  Then I make cookies with the grandkids.  I now have to sleep for 2 hours and am sore for hours after that.  I love baking cookies!  I love cooking!  I love clean…whoops, not that one.  But when I finish, in fact multiple times within the cooking and baking, I have to sit.  When I’m done my feet are sore, my back is sore, and I’m exhausted!

My friend Gloria read from a book “Getting Old is Not for Sissies!”  I sure identified with that!  At this time, I have my kids so well trained, all I have to do is the “up” gesture they used when they were two years old, and they will pull me out of my chair.  Why do I need to be pulled out of my chair?!  This is ridiculous!  My old year’s resolution was to drop some pounds so I wouldn’t be in this painful condition.  I went on a diet, (ketogenic) and I must have done it wrong because I GAINED weight.  I spent time in the gym doing my physical therapy exercises so I wouldn’t limp so much.  I’m still limping.  I got on the curve treadmill and the stationary bike to build up my endurance.  I’m out of breath going up 7 stairs.   It seems counterintuitive that when you consume fewer calories, and exercise more to use more calories, that you can remain the same weight or gain.  That’s just how it is with me, so I’m not going to rant on that (again) but I sure would like to find something that works.  I feel so icky!

December 26, 2021

My grandkids didn’t help do cookies this year. Covid, traveling, activities such as concerts and ball games. The hour I spent on my feet was doing dishes from Christmas Dinner. I only did 1 batch of cookies all season–Cranberry/white chocolate chip oatmeal cookies. They were delish! I am about 10 pounds heavier than when I wrote this 4 years ago. I actually HAVE diabetes. I have to prick my finger every morning. Hmmm. That’s not dramatic. It’s not a major pain, it just means I have to remember to take a pill and prick my finger every day. It’s the only med I’m on. I CAN get out of the chair by myself. My lower back pain is annoying but I can stand longer and walk longer than I used to. My feet don’t hurt. I don’t stay sore for as long–no more than 5-10 min. I gave out no baskets, only made a couple of loaves of pumpkin bread, and a couple of cranberry bread instead of the 150 we did when Jo graduated 18 years ago. I made no fudge. Dinner was small, no 25 lb. turkey this year. We will be having leftovers for a week!

I’m limping still, but not as noticeably. I’m not out of breath going up 7 steps. My silly ap says that if I continue on the calorie count as I have, I will have lost five pounds in five weeks. I find that amusing.

This is good/bad

Went to a convention in Indianapolis.  Whee!  Prepaid the parking and it is just across the street from the Colts’ stadium which is good since 1/2 the event happens here.  Unfortunately, the other half is in the convention center, which according to the map, is just a couple minutes’ walk from the parking facility.  The map is SO wrong!  1st off, it’s about 4-6 blocks from the car, but when you get to the center, it’s another 1/2 mile INSIDE the building!  I am using my cane, but the side effect is that my back and hip on the uninjured side now stiffen up.

Once you get to the room, you sit for 4 hours after the walk.  Uh oh.  Now back and hip is stiffened up, AND the injured leg is weak and doesn’t want to support my weight.  Not the worst, because hubby’s knee is giving out now!  OH NO!  So started at the stadium.  Then 3 hours later, they kick us out (even though most of the participants are buying food!) before the next session.  The participants take their food outside to eat, and 1/2 hour later, when the doors re-open, are not allowed to take it back in to the facility.  Doh!  Sit for another 3 1/2 hours, then mosey out to find the next session.  We wander down the street and with no end in sight, we stop and sit on some of the low walls.  Finally, we get to the convention center, then follow the crowd in and stand in line for another 30 min to get pizza.  We go to the last session and sit for 2 more hours.  Hip, back and thigh is stiff, and hubby’s knee is sore.  Limp back to the car and ride home.

My right hand is now bruised from the cane.  The room phone doesn’t work, and I am having difficulties getting into the internet.  I should put on my run tracker tomorrow!  I’m going to sleep like a rock tonight!

 

Why does it take so looooonnnnnnngggggg?

Broke my hip in August.  10 months.  3 months now without cane or crutches.  My Physical Therapist says, “Try not to walk with a limp.”  OK.  But my injured leg doesn’t come straight up and down when I step on it.  It kinda lists off to one side.  When I walk on the tread mill, my gait is ok, but when I’m done, my right arm is sore.  “Don’t lean on it.”  ok.  “Try not to walk with a limp.”  *puts hand back on handle bars for tread mill.*  “Now that’s good, just take your hand off now.”  *takes hand off*  “Now try not to walk with a limp…”  repeat.

They’re all confused about what to do with my gait.  So they sent me to the shoe store to get better shoes.  I paid $165 for shoes that hurt.  They have a wide sole and a very hard and high arch.  I slide to the outside of the shoe.  (Gravity tends to work that way.  Put something on a hill and it will slide down.)  “Your gait needs improving.  The shoes are fine; you are messed up.”  I have blisters on the tops of my toes on one foot, and the tarsometatarsal joint on the outside of my foot goes out of place if I step on uneven ground.  This is most unpleasant.  Since I was a dance teacher many years ago, I know how to pop it back in, but that doesn’t make it less painful, and it doesn’t solve the problem.

I tripped over a broken hose this morning, and it hurt that foot, and also the thigh on my injured leg.  Here I am at 7:30 AM and my day is already slated to be nasty.  I’m driving through the heavy rain with lightning and thunder, and the guy on the radio says, there’s a better chance for rain (50%!) for tomorrow.  How can a 50% chance of rain be better than the 100% that we have now?  Will it rain more earnestly?  My conclusion is that the day brings what the day brings, and hurting myself 1st thing in the morning does not dictate how the rest of the day will go.

Congratulations! You’re cured!

I don’t get that assessment very often.  I got it from my orthopedic doctor yesterday.  But Doctor, I still hurt.  “Yup.  You’re going to hurt.”  But Doctor, I still limp.  “Yup, you still limp.”  How am I cured?  “Your leg is no longer broken.”  Ah.

Then, from the Physical Therapist…”You know, eventually you’ll have to be doing exercises on your own to keep making progress.  You have to get to the point where you don’t need us any more.”

Maybe I should have washed the clothes I wear to the appointments…though I didn’t notice anyone’s eyes tearing up and heard no retching noises.

I did get new shoes yesterday.  They are supposed to compensate for my outward roll on my right foot and support my weak left leg.  Both have a very high arch support in them.  I feel like my foot is sliding off the center of the shoe.  They felt ok in the store though.  Is there a thing where when you cross the threshold, the shoes have a trigger that turns off the comfort level?  I guess I’ll find out if it works in a few days.

So for all intents and purposes, my leg is healed.  It still hurts to stand on it for any length of time, and I cannot go up and down stairs like I used to.  But…

IT’S PROGRESS!

 

It’s raining

It’s Pouring, the Old Man is Snoring…

Ok I’m snoring.  I’m lying on my side in the Physical Therapist’s office on a padded table with a heating pad on my leg.  It’s really heavy and it’s moist heat.  *beep*  Time for the ultra sound.  zzzzzzz.  *beep*  “Were you sleeping?”  Me?  No.  Why do you ask?  “Because normally people who are awake don’t snore.”  oh

She really really worked my IT band–the tendon that connects the hip and the knee.  Iliotibial band it’s called.  I’m cross-eyed in pain…and also I don’t have my glasses on so I may not be cross-eyed, just blurry.  ANYWAY, after the torture comes the exercises.  Leg lift with 2 lb. weights, side lift with same weight (OWIE!  that one’s hard.)  Hamstring stretch 3 x at 30 seconds.  Leg extensions with 3 lb weight.  Leg curl with blue band resistance.  Calf stretch 3 x at 30 seconds.  Hip glider machine, 3 springs, 15 times.  Sideways stepping, marching then on to the box.  It’s 4″ box I step up on my bad leg, touch my right toe and then step back down.  15 of those.  After that, I step up on my bad leg and then continue forward and step down on my good leg.  15 of those.  5 min on the tread mill, lvl 1.

Then I walk out of the office.  I don’t limp for a good 45 min after that.  Then I sit down and of course it tightens up again, but I’m not limping as bad.  But it’s raining.  I have to limp fast to get to the car!  So I am making measurable progress.

I do have a question though.  You all know how hard it is for me to loose weight.  Very strict diet, and I do as much exercise as I can given my current physical state.  Do the probiotics work?  Could I have a digestive problem instead of a calorie problem?

Unintended consequences

Compensating behavior takes place whenever one part of the body is compromised due to injury or disease.  So when you stub your toe, you limp and take more weight on your other foot.  When you jam your fingers, you hold your pencil differently.

I went to a Toastmaster conference in Lincoln over the weekend of April 21, and had to walk about 3 blocks from the parking lot to the hotel where the event took place.  I was a good girl and used my cane.  I was limping and I guess I need new shoes.  My left leg is fine, but my right calf seized up so badly that it’s pulling on my Achilles tendon and causing pain in my right heel.

How do you effectively limp on both feet?