Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Week 9 and Counting

It takes a lot to rock me, to knock me down for the count, but I tell you, these past 2+ months have been doing their best to give me the one-two punch that sends you to the mat for the full 10-count.

My life these past few weeks is obviously not what I thought it to be. From developing an injury that appears to be the type which will take a very long time to heal - that is to say, it's very plausible I will not be running for 8-12 months - to dealing with significant personal issues, I have been on a physical, mental, and emotional roller coaster ride like nothing I have ever experienced before. My personal plans, my running goals, they have been, for an indeterminate amount of time, flushed down the proverbial toilet. A tornado has ripped through my life, and I'm trying to find the pieces to put it all back together, like a life-size jigsaw puzzle.

I have come to realize how much of the crap life throws at you I work out in my mind while running. Though I entered this crazy running world only a few years ago, the thought of not being able to run for a significant period of time has left me feeling out of sorts and unbalanced. Not being able to join my friend, Karen, for our weekend trail runs has, at times, reduced me to tears. I did not know how much I would miss it all until it was taken away, whether temporary or permanently.

I miss the endorphin rush of a hard, but successful, training run.

I miss the quiet of a predawn run, of slowly watching the rest of the world greet the day.

I miss taking my troubles, working through them over miles of dirt, then putting them away in a mental drawer marked "Done."

I miss the hours-long chats with Karen, so different from phone conversations or talks over lunch.

I miss the anticipation of a new and more challenging training schedule from my coach.

I miss feeling sweaty, tired, and satisfied after a 20-mile run.

I miss the anxious butterflies that always accompany me in the days leading up to a race.

I miss the me I become when I am pushing myself to limits I never in my wildest dreams thought I could achieve.

I just miss . . .

Adversity is like a strong wind. It tears away from us all but the things that cannot be torn, so that we see ourselves as we really are.

You will be OK.
Everything will be as it should.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

And the Stumping Continues

Week Six of Crutches.

Went to the doc yesterday and got the results of my MRI:

The crappy news - I'm still on crutches.

The okay news - I get to start, little by little putting pressure on the foot.

The crappy news - It's not a stress fracture, and there is still inflammation and swelling showing on the MRI.

The crappy news - I would've been better off with a stress fracture.

The crappy news - Might have torn the tendon on the downhill run, and if so it's healing as best as can be expected right now.

The crappy news - He thinks I have a mild case of RSD in the foot. At the onset of the injury, the nerves went wacky from the stress and are still totally wacked out. He said most people show up at his office when the nerves have progressed to a "wildfire." He thinks I have more of a "trash can fire," and it's just a matter of getting them to calm down. Have to keep up with the contrast baths and nerve stimulation (which involves a paint brush, and my foot, and . . . heh heh heh)

The crappy news - It could take 6-9 months for the nerves to calm down.

The good news - That doesn't necessarily mean it'll be 6-9 months before I'm running again. I have to be able to walk briskly for one hour without pain before I can progress to running.

The crappy news - I go back to him on the 27th and he hopes I've progressed to putting 50% pressure on the foot. Only 50%!

The crappy news - Doc: "Sometimes stress can make our bodies heal slower. Are you under any stress right now?" Me (trying to not break out into a combination of hysterical laughter and crying, because, well, yeah . . .): "I am under so much stress right now, it's absolutely ridiculous, and there's no light at the end of the tunnel." Doc: "Are you eating?" Me: "I'm trying." He gently admonished me to eat better, get more protein in my diet and to try and get the stress under control. (He and I discussed this further, but I'm not going into details here.)

Sooooo - When I fly to Conference in Los Angeles May 18 thru 22, I'm going to be on crutches. Wonder if the hotel has wheelchairs, 'cause the place the conference is being held is suppose to be huge. *sigh* I would say I need a drink, but that's probably fairly inappropriate at this point in my life, so I'd settle for my pajamas, a box of donuts, and a gallon of milk.