The Alphabet… sortof

As seen on DecoyBetty um a long while ago. But clearly I fail at blogging regularly. I do intend to update on my knee once I stop being mad at the fact that it has taken 10 weeks for me to start jogging. Not even running but jogging. Indoors. Back and forth. At physical therapy. I cannot explain how irritating that is.

A. Age: 28.

B. Bed size: Full.

C. Chore you dislike: Cleaning the toilet… oh and trash. but really the toilet. I have even gotten a maid to avoid dealing with it.

D. Dogs: I’m really more of a cat person. But puppies are adorable 🙂

E. Essential start to your day: Sunlight. I don’t believe a day is truly started unless there is sunlight… and this is why I can’t live on the East Coast.

F. Favorite color: GREEN! (and yes it does require all caps)

G. Gold or silver: Silver, definitely silver. In some instances I do like gold but those are few and far between.

H. Height: Definitively short. I’m 5′-5’1″ depending on who is measuring me. Though my driver’s license used to say 5’2″, apparently in Texas they believe anything you say.

I. Instruments you play(ed): Flute. for real and for a long time over 10 years. Guitar. poorly and self taught. Dabbled with trumpet, clarinet and piano. I was far more musical in my younger years.

J. Job title: Consultant

K. Kids: I like them long enough to give back.

L. Live: Chicago.

M. Mom’s name: Raka, apparently in my family we like R’s.

N. Nicknames: rhe-ra, rhe-rhe, rhae-rhae – it’s hard to have nicknames when your name is only one syllable

O. Overnight hospital stays: I’ve had them but I don’t remember, which is probably a good thing.

P. Pet peeves: Dirty dishes in the sink. For the love of god just do your damn dishes! Oh and rollerbladers who take up the bike path as if they own it – people, you know there are bikers and runners and even walkers that would love to *share* the path with you.

Q. Quote from a movie: “I’m gonna say the thing you’re not supposed to say, I love you but I love me more.” – Samantha, Sex & The City

R. Righty or lefty: Righty.

S. Siblings: The one and only.

T. Time you wake up: errr, 6:30ish. Depends on when I have physical therapy and the other days if I’m motivated enough to go to the gym before work.

U. Underwear: Typical cotton bikinis, but you know silk ones are fun too.

V. Vegetables you don’t like: Lettuce. Totally overrated. People are not rabbits.

W. What makes you run late: Forgetting things. Or that I run on Desi-Standard-Time… at least some variation thereof. 😉

X. X-rays you’ve had: Head, neck, wrist, ankle, knee, chest. I sound like I have a million problems but really some of them were because of the chiropractor and others due to sports, a few were health related precautions.

Y. Yummy food you make: Steak, cheese or chocolate souffle, creme caramel, lamb chops, butternut squash puree with maple syrup, lots of things!

Z. Zoo animal favorites: Anything in the cat family! Though pretty much anything that is either a baby or fuzzy will do.


Screw talking about my ACL (I mean ok, I will get back to it at some point) but more importantly let’s talk about something infinitely more serious…

I’m adopting kittens. They are the cutest little things I have ever seen. It’s a brother and sister pair, Monster (black and white) and Sassy (grey and white). I think I may be in love. (Not to mention Sassy looks just like my old cat, Ascot, that lives with my mom who I miss dearly but would kill me if I brought her to freaking cold Chicago.)

ACL Reconstruction Post-Op: Day 14

So we finally made it to two weeks out. I’m officially relieved of my crutches – even with public transportation. And I’m out of the brace indoors just not outdoors because you never know what might happen. I’ve been told I need to walk “normally” because I’ve gotten used to limping around, so it’s now become a habit.

What is less exciting… the bruising. What they don’t tell you is that after you start walking around you have these ridiculous bruises all over your leg. Most predominantly around my ankles and lower shins. I swear this looks worse than when I came out of surgery. It’s ridiculous.

And I definitely didn’t have any on this side before:

And it’s true they do warn you that you can’t shower completely until your stitches are out but let me tell you, 2 weeks of not being able to wash your leg is like torture. I have to put my leg in a bag and then duck tape it to my leg so my wound doesn’t get wet and infected. It is so frustrating. The stitches come out tomorrow and I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited to be able to shower in my life.

More Than Just Running

I know I sound like a deranged lunatic with all my running updates and sometimes am less than coherent about it. But it’s because for me it’s more than just running. I’m not doing this just because I want to run a marathon. In fact, I totally made fun of both of my group-mates in my econ class just a year ago because they were training for the marathon and were clearly on their way to injury but still running anyway. I just didn’t get it at the time, I do not have that desire to run. And while I like running. It keeps me in great physical shape and I’m happier and healthier having it in my life, it is not my passion. By a long shot.

Let’s be honest, I’m happiest curled up in bed with a good book doing absolutely nothing. I love sports, I enjoy running and I enjoy being physical but they are certainly not the first things that I think of when I think of things that make me happy. I am one of those people where it requires some amount of effort to do those things. So this whole fitness regimen has been a challenge for me. Mentally and physically. Actually I think more mentally than anything else.

So the real reason I’m running… because cancer has touched my life by affecting several people that I love dearly. And when I say family it’s not just about being related by blood there are so many people that have touched my life that aren’t related by blood. It’s my friends, exes, people I’ve known forever and those I haven’t known for very long. It’s the people who touch your life regardless of whether they stay for a long time or are a brief glimmer of light; it’s those people who change you, who will forever be a part of you, that I consider to be part of my “family” too. So I run for Team in Training as a part of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society because in some small way I feel like I’m doing my part to help. And at the end of the day there is so little I can actually do that this is my way to try and advocate for a cause I believe in desperately. So I babble about my shoes and my injuries and how much all of it irritates me. And how I got a tattoo in the middle of my training because that was a brilliantly well thought out plan. (I know, sometimes I’m an idiot). Because I have to keep running. I simply do.

Why Am I Doing This Again?

So my roommate and I are moving, which I am actually pretty excited about. We’ve found a gorgeous new apartment and I’m looking forward to decorating and getting all our stuff into it. What I’m not so into, is the actual move itself. We started moving this past weekend and the only thing running through my head is “Why am I doing this to myself again?”. I mean I have been at my current apartment for a long time (for me). And this new place is really just awesome. And I have been really ready for some sort of change to take place. I know not everyone is like this but I’m not much of a person to set down roots and since I like Chicago enough to not want to run away from the city and look for another job on another continent or at least another state, moving apartments seems to suffice. Also, I find moving to be a cleansing process. Out with the old, in with the new and a time to make changes in your life. Some will stick, some will not but it’s a good time to just reset everything. While I do think there are a lot of positives to this move, I really just wish it were overwith and that lifting heavy things were not so painful. Or that there were some magic fairies that would do it for me. Sadly, this is not a fairytale and I’m pretty sure we just have to suck it up and deal.

Mystery Tooth

So about 4 years ago in a moment of brilliance I decided to get all 4 of my wisdom teeth taken out at once. It was painful and I couldn’t eat and it basically sucked a lot. But I was like ok well at least it was all at once and now it’s all over. Wrong again.

Just yesterday I noticed that my mouth was a little sore and my gum was super tender and OH MY GOD! DO I FEEL BONE?! Why yes, in fact I do. I feel another tooth coming in. Right where I had another one removed 4 years ago! SERIOUSLY!? How is that even possible?! Suffice to say I am not thrilled. In fact, I’m so far away from thrilled I can’t even describe because last time all of my teeth were impacted and required oral surgery. I am *not* looking forward to going through *that* again.

Sometimes I am S-M-R-T

No, that is not a mis-spelling. That is pretty much how I feel right now. As I mentioned before I’ve been training for a marathon and it’s pretty near and dear to my heart as one of my cousins was just diagnosed with cancer, again. It’s a different kind than when she first was diagnosed and won her fight about 20 years ago but it’s just really jarring to have a diagnosis that it may be back in a new location and in a different form. Especially when it isn’t really something that’s been an issue for nearly 20 years. That’s a long time for it to be gone. I mean I guess it’s different I was just a child when she was fighting against it, so it just feels so much more real this time around. Though this time they caught it in the early stages, which is good. And they are treating her aggressively. Also, I will be allowed to see her this time because I will not be some germy little kid. It always sucks as a kid that you can’t see anyone who is sick because children are like a depot of diseases.

Anyway that is not why I started this. So running right now is pretty important to me. I try really hard to keep up with the long runs even if I’m not completely on schedule. So anyway this past weekend I finally decided I think my running shoes suck. Honestly, my knees have been hurting and I have crazy blisters on the insides of my feet. Thankfully one of the coaches from TNT recommended a place where I can go and said I should make sure to look for shoes that work better for people who pronate because that’s why I’m getting blisters (and possibly a black toe). So anyway, I was all set to go to the running store later that day. But as I was leaving practice my knee really started to act up. By the time I got home I couldn’t really bend it without significant pain. And forget about trying to walk up the stairs to my 3 story walk-up. That was the best time ever.

Now here’s the part where I really show my brilliance. I decide to stay in and ice my knee and give myself a break for the rest of the day, which was great and probably something I have needed for a long time. But the very next morning I got up early and headed out to my soccer game even though the knee wasn’t totally feeling better. It was definitely smarting at the beginning of the game – you would think this is a warning sign. No siree, not for me. I continued to play on it until the last 15mins of the second half when I literally couldn’t walk without limping. Because that, my friends, is S-M-R-T.

Learning To Run

You know, running doesn’t seem like something that is initially incredibly complex but now that I’m training for a marathon I think there is a lot more to running than just putting one foot in front of the other. Such a huge part of training is a mental game, just being able to tell yourself that you can do it. First of all, I don’t consider myself a runner because I’m slow and I just don’t think of myself as a runner. I first started running any meaningful distance (read: more than a mile… ok actually it was like 3ish) in April when a coworker asked me to start running outside with her and to do a 5k. I have these trusty old running shoes that I have come to love a lot.

Since I started training for my marathon these shoes have served me really well but they’ve got a lot of miles on them now. And recently I’ve heard a lot of talk about these new shoes. Ones that are the closest thing to running barefoot. So I’ve decided to take the plunge and give them a try. I haven’t run in them yet, obviously since you can still see the tags.

As much as I deny being a runner and saying how much I dislike it, it’s seriously addictive. After I did my 5k I followed it with a 10k a few weeks later and then a half marathon about 3 weeks after the 10k. This was a pretty poorly planned set of races for someone who isn’t a runner. However, it did make me see that I really like running, it’s challenging in some great ways but it’s also difficult to run the much longer distances by yourself. I find running about 6 miles by myself is a great challenge and I like doing it alone. But the longer distances pretty much anything upwards of 10 miles is really really difficult for me to get through without help. So I am extraordinarily glad that I discovered Team in Training because not only do I have a great group of people that I run with, I am reminded that I’m not just running for my health or to challenge myself but also to help all those people who are battling cancer. I’m doing what I can to make a difference in the world. Perhaps it’s in a very small way but it is what I can do. It also reminds me to appreciate the journey I’m on. Life is one great journey and there is always something new around the corner and you never know what you find.

Is This Really Necessary?

So I know my friend, D, just went through this recently where she went on the pill and was horrified by the resulting aftermath. I, too, decided that maybe I would give it a shot. My reasons are different from the majority of women on the pill. I typically don’t sleep with men so I’m not really concerned about getting pregnant. However my cramps can be a nightmare and I am an emotional disaster depending on the state of my hormones. Clearly, knowing that I’m an emotional disaster depending on the state of my hormones means I should try to fuck with them by using some synthetic ones. Clearly, I’m a genius.

Well anyway, the hype is that they help a lot. That said my first week with them was far from pleasant. It involved a lot of crying. Crying of the sobbing uncontrollably variety at work. And let me tell you it’s a little hard to explain why you’re sobbing uncontrollably when there’s really no reason other than my hormones are out of whack and that pen was the wrong color. Seriously, the blue was upsetting (or something equally trivial and stupid). That said things seem to have calmed down, I’m in the middle of week 3 and I’m still a little easier to tip over to the side of crying, which is super awkward cause I’m not really a crier, but it is getting a lot better.

Though I have to think, if this were something that effected men we wouldn’t be doing experiments on our own body right now. They’d have figured something better out instead of – well just wait it out and see what happens. I mean seriously, what kind of an answer is that. I am living in my own personal version of hell and you’re telling me that I just have to wait and see if I adjust. Do I get a refund on those 3 months of my life? Cause that would be stellar too. Anyway, at least I feel vindicated about some of the times when I do know that I’m just super on edge and it’s not *just* me. I suppose in a way that makes it worth it, though I’m not entirely sure just how.

A Little Too Much Sun?

Ok so this will sound silly. At least, I get laughed at a lot by my white friends because of it. But I just recently discovered sunburns. It’s probably my least favourite discovery of *all* time. I mean let’s be honest, how many brown people do you know that burn? I don’t really know any. Well until now and that would be myself.

About 2 weeks ago I was lying out on the beach for a couple of hours when I got my first burn. It was just my nose and cheeks but it was definitely enough to be disconcerting for yours truly over here. Quite frankly, I wasn’t exactly sure what happened except my face was pink and it stung like mad. I mean what is that about? And then this weekend I was in a parade and my shoulders, oh my god, my shoulders. I had no idea that it was this bad. Or that this was even possible. I mean sure I’ve seen people get sunburns. And I had imagined that they don’t look like fun. But the intellectual understanding versus actually getting a burn is a far far far cry. Maybe I’m just a wimp but seriously. Sunburns, not cool. I clearly need to invest in sunblock. Well not only invest but actually remember to put it on. For now I’m off in search of some aloe. and maybe some ice.