I wanted to post five days ago, but there wasn’t much to say. Nothing too major has happened. Nothing too exciting. Basically I’m just sitting here, waiting on my my appointment to see my surgeon – which is a week and a half away. Most of my time last week was spent sleeping… I mean SLEEPING. To the point of I was only awake about 3 hours a day. I’m still sleeping a LOT but the nurse who has to look at the wound every day says it looks a lot healthier. I also fought a cold this past weekend, so I really didn’t want to blog all about the boring stuff. Also, writing all of these things down and editing and pictures take a LOT of energy that I just didn’t have until today (Thursday, April 11th) Honestly, all my energy has gone into prayer for my best friend, Hannah. She had surgery this week to correct one of her health issues, so really, I wasn’t very focused on what I was doing. I was focusing on what she was doing, how she was feeling. For once in the last almost six months, I wasn’t thinking about what was wrong with me and it was SUPER refreshing. Spoiler: She’s doing well, so now I can go back to what’s going on with me.
Focusing on my recovery is a huge battle. It’s not only keeping myself physically healthy and fit, it’s keeping myself MENTALLY healthy. A lot of this recovery IS a mental battle and there are a lot of times where I need to put in headphones, tell everyone to leave me alone and read a book, or pick up my Bible and open to a random chapter and read. I find the best verses when I open my Bible at random. During the day, I do keep the radio on a lot. I use the radio because it tells me events going on, and gives me some sort of feeling of being in the community. Not just what’s going on in this wing of a skilled nursing rehab where 99% of the time some person is yelling for help – that’s not an exaggeration.
A lot of my mental health isn’t even about what’s going on with me. It’s having to listen to other residents who are in the end stages of life, knowing people pass away just doors away from me. At 26 years old, I’ve learned about my own mortality. Life is precious and it’s very easily ended. We think we’re doing great in life and then one thing happens and you’re in the hospital for a year. (I hope and pray it won’t be a year, but I love exaggeration) So watching other people being moved to a hospice or not making it through the night can be intense.
Being aware of how I feel has been part of my every day routine. Do I feel like getting out of bed? That’s usually very ambitious of me. Do I feel like putting on makeup? SUPER ambitious. Do I want food today is the biggest struggle I have – I’ve mentioned how terrible food is here – Sometimes I just don’t want to eat. Actually I just don’t want to eat 75% of the time. It’s not a new thing for me either. I just don’t like eating. I forget to eat if I’m not around people who eat. Unless it’s french fries and honey mustard. I’d eat that forever. I have to tell myself every day that If I don’t at least TRY to interact at least on social media, I’ll feel even worse tomorrow.
Thankfully, I have super amazing friends that hardly ever let me not talk to them. They keep me in the loop with what’s happening in their lives so I feel like I’m still part of everything. I get videos from shows/concerts/events. Because if you know me, you know I would go to a show every day if I could, and I think I did that for a month once. It was exhausting. But that’s the kind of exhausted I miss. The kind from being outside for too long, or from traveling a long distance, or sitting outside in a line for eight hours (I’ve only done it three times, and all three times it was necessary for me to be able to see the concert – the fourth WILL be in September when we’re at Justin Timberlake. We will definitely be on the look out for him… because… it’s Justin Timberlake)
The kind of exhaustion I feel now is an overwhelming need to shut my eyes or the inability to even open my eyes. It’s not even being able to lift a three pound weight in my left arm because for more than six weeks I had a PICC line in my arm and hardly moved it at all. It’s the fact that my left arm actually has a TREMOR now when I use it in an activity that’s anymore than lifting a pillow. It’ll correct itself in time, when I’m not sitting in a bed 22 hours a day. Also, I’ve been commended for STAYING in bed by the nurse who looks at it almost every day. She said to stay in bed, and sometimes that’s impossible. Like tomorrow, it’ll be 60 degrees outside. I think it’s supposed to be sunny. Even five minutes of light therapy will be goodness for my body and soul. I’m not complaining. It could be so much worse, and even though this is very, very bad… it’s more of an out of body experience where it doesn’t feel like it’s really happening, but it is. I have weird pains every once in a while, because I don’t have much feeling past my waist, but I seem to have enough to get weird uncomfortable pains when I sit or lay in certain positions. I’m just exhausted.