Not finished yet

I'm excited. 

I've just called and asked my GP for a letter of referral for me to see a plastic surgeon here in town to get the final fat grafting part of my reconstruction going. It's not covered under our health care like the rest of the recon was, so if I have to pay for it I want to choose and get a few opinions and see a plastic surgeon who specializes in breast augmentation/reconstruction and liposuction so I get the best results I can. I've done some hunting and learned that there are 2 of these highly rated surgeons in my home town who are both in the same office and I am excited to hopefully have an appointment with one of them soon. I want  their opinion on how to finish up my reconstruction so you can't see the edges of my implant under my skin anymore. The bottom of my foob looks alright because of the muscle moved around to build the breast pocket and I'm pleased with it sizewise, but the top and side of the implant are really visible through my skin. This is because when they did my radical mastectomy they took all extra tissue and fat from my chest, so there's just nothing there under my skin to cover up and hide the implant...and now that I've fully healed the edge of the implant can be seen and my ribs are more noticeable. There is no fat to cushion between me and my bra, with a pronounced gap on the inside and sometimes bras or tops rub in an uncomfortable way because there is no fat layer there. My reconstructed breast just isn't finished. I was warned fat grafting could be needed for me because I'm smaller and as much as I've tried to just ignore it, it really is the case after all. JJ doesn't care (sweet man) and I look fine with clothes on, but there is a restriction on how "normal" some cuts of clothing can look because of this. I don't want more surgery, but after much thought, I don't want to just leave it either.

Since my wonderful dad offered to pay for fat grafting for me I'm just gonna get started already. I was gonna wait to get a few pounds back off so I'm at the "regular" me for surgery (I'm worried if I lose any weight after I'll lose the fat they moved too...just one of many questions to ask the surgeon). I put this surgery off because it might require multiple operations and I couldn't bear paying for one and not really being able to pay for another - I couldn't justify spending so much money just for my own vanity...but it really is frustrating. With Dad's help I can do what I need to to fix it. It's a huge relief. Now that my life is returning to a semblance of normal I can focus on these things again.

It's silly but part of me feels bad at not going back to my original surgeon for this but I don't feel he has any particular expertise in this regards, and I know he could try and maybe would be fine at it, but if I'm gonna pay for it I want someone who can do the best work possible so I don't have any more surgeries than necessary. My original surgeon who did my mastectomy did a great job, but he was not a reconstructive plastic surgeon so I was assigned to a different plastic surgeon for that par...and I think tried his best, but I don't know if he has any specialized skills in breast reconstruction. He was great for me for my delayed recon after radiation and he tried his best with what he had to work with and I really like him...but nice isn't always best. My breast is not normal looking at all and I want to change that if I can and meet with another surgeon as well as him to see what my options are. 

Here's hoping I  get an appointment soon for some answers and ideas.

On a different, equally amazing note I have 700 googley eyes coming in the mail. All sizes. Self adhesive. Squee...

Count to ten

This weekend was nice. Spent time at friends, board games and wine and laughs. Went bowling with friends last night - I broke 100...I'm a particularly sucky bowler so I was pretty smug. Didn't get too much done as far as chores and practical things though. I need to start to make a list of things needing done and spend either saturday or sunday working on some things...because It's good to be happy, but it's also good to actually accomplish things as well. Things have been better lately. Lots to work on...but good. Got to talk to old friends on the phone. Drank some nice coffee.
It's a start...

I have lost it once before I've pulled myself up from the floor 
And I am looking for a reason to stay standing 
But sometimes it's just too much or not enough or something else 
It's so much bigger than my head, it's too demanding 
Sometimes the fastest way to get there is to go slow 
And sometimes if you wanna hold on you got to let go 
I'm gonna close my eyes 
And count to ten 
I'm gonna close my eyes 
And when I open them again 
Everything will make sense to me then

Brace yourself

Picked up a Tensor knee brace with side stabilizers at London Drugs before class last night. It is ugly as hell, but it really helps. I could do the Tabata class, although I was modifying a few things (like no switch lunges or knee killers moves like that) - I didn't have any clicks or pain with it on.  Later that evening my knee did get stiff and click more after when I would straighten my leg (the clicks are what hurt) so I put the brace back on. I've work it all day today. It's comfy and has kept my kneecap oriented and tracking correctly all day with my stiff weak leg muscles so it doesn't click. I'm gonna take it easy to the leg, do knee strengthening exercises only and just walk lots and do upper body stuff until class next week to let it get stronger. Once I get stronger this will fade. It's annoying, but I can deal- a reminder I can't just jump back into things all the time - and I MUST stretch after. Skipping a stretch is what I think started all this last week. Tight stiff quad and glut muscles pull my kneecap out of alignment and cause all this mess. I'll get a more expensive brace to wear while I exercise long term if it'll help - I figured 25 bucks was a good minimum investment to see if it would help. So far so good.

Today I had a really good management training course and it had a lot of things that were applicable for use in my home life as well. It focused on being present and creating an environment of positive encouragement and acknowledgement. It focused on how to be an encouraging manager and work with people to find their skills and help them feel appreciated. It was a lot to take home and try to insert into my life and workplace.

Tonight I finally get to see my bestie Heather - I haven't seen her since the start of December. Too long...and lots has happened. We're gonna go for snacks at the mall and a late movie and it'll be so nice to catch up. Gonna go see the latest Underworld installment, eat popcorn and make fun of the vampires. Should be fun. I really missed her.

Also talked to the roofer who replaced our roof a few years ago and I  hope to book someone soon to come look at our attic soon and see if I can't get to the bottom of our condensation issues. Maybe we need more vents or better insulation. We'll see. When I say it is a condensation and insulation issue J won't take Dad's advice for it and wants an expert opinion - but we don't really know all we could do to fix it really and I hope that whatever info we get from a roofing person it'll get dealt with better.  We have a bit of money set aside for this kinda thing so I'll pay what we need to to get this fixed. I could do the work...depends on what it is tho. It's hot itchy sweaty work to be in an attic and I just don't really want to.

Did you know it's +4 today.


This AM my knee was clicking, so instead of a heavy workout, since I have my Tabata class tomorrow I just decided to take it easy and that the walk to work would be good enough. It was a nice walk.
 I've been devouring new podcasts lately in the mornings: Science VS and Sci Fri along with Welcome to Nightvale and StarTalk...I am on the quest for new ones. If any of you have ones you love (don't have to be sciency) please tell me - I'd be curious to try them. I don't get to learn a lot of new stuff in my current job (meh) so I try and use my brain when I can this way. With my memory issues I often drive J crazy trying to tell him about all the things I learned about that I can't remember all the specifics of later - but I feel like having more knowledge can help me be a better person. If I'm more informed, I can be a more helpful part of society...of my circle of friends...of my family.
I must say tho -I have a bit more focus than before...the medication I'm on seems to be helping altho the dosage may need to be adjusted a bit to see if it will improve even more - I am enjoying having some times of mental clarity again. Complex thought and analysis are welcome old friends. Hell, I can even read a book and remember parts of it later! This is huge. It's like your ear popping after it's been plugged again and being able to hear again. :)

10 Kg of rice is a lot of rice

I finally stopped creaking by sunday. Whew. I was pretty stiff. My left knee is doing it's "thing" again, so I'm trying to be kind to it. As my legs get stronger it should fade. I'm modifying if there is any pain. So far so good. I had lots of hot baths over the weekend to help get rid of the aches and had a beer or two in the bath...bubblebaths with beers are really the best.

On sundayI bought 10 Kg of rice and put it all inside ziplocs and into my new sandbag. It's ~22 Lb and I can remove a few bags that should weigh about 2 Lb each if I find it is too much. I used it this morning and it's challenging but not overwhelming. Very versatile tool I'm loving it already.

This morning I got up and did Bodyrock HIITMax 1 and 2 again through as instructed. I modified where needed (skips and jumping jacks instead of burpees) and pushups on the knees. I still can't do suspended tricep dips either, but I tried :) I made it through. AND as an added bonus the deep freeze we've been in has lifted and it was actually nice enough for me to walk to work today. Meep!! It was only -12 with a bit of wind. With my long coat and less trompy boots I had a nice walk to work, listening to a Startalk podcast and sipping some chai tea. It's a great way to start the day. I have been missing my morning walks.

I should go be sciency though. I hope you are all well. I feel pretty good so far today. I am hoping this week will be a good one. I really do.

Friday the 13th

It's friday. The 13th. I love it - they tend to be lucky days for me. Here's hoping the trend continues.

Oy tho -Talk about delayed onset muscle soreness. Ooooeeee.
This AM I almost wimped out because I was so achey and didn't sleep very well last night (woke up a zillion times), but I managed to finally haul my ass out to the living room and do the HIITMax 2 workout, although I switched out burpees for skipping for cardio because after a few of them my lower body was ready to quit all together. I had a heckuva time doing the lunges because my legs are quite stiff...but I did the best I could. It is done...that is the important part. I think a hot bath with epsom salts may be in order tonight tho...
This weekend I'm gonna buy some rice for my sand bag. I'm hoping it'll be heavy enough. It would be easier to clean up than sand if things I don't know where to get sand in the middle of winter. I'm hoping I'll be able to fit 20 Lb into the bag...we'll see. I saw a few blog posts of others who've done it so I'm hopeful.
I can't wait for the stiffness to's always evil when you're getting back into things. But I will persevere. I have an ass to build. :)

Gotta run. Much to do. I hope to watch a cheesy horror film tonight...cuz it's friday the 13th.

I'm still alive!!

HIIT class last night was intense and awesome. I love the format and the teacher is great. It was a very solid workout. She does 4 minute tabatas of 4 different things with a 1 minute break in between before you go on to the next set. Last night we did 6 sets total with a warm up and cool down. Phew. My friend Robin and I certainly got in a solid workout.

This AM I got up to do the Bodyrock HIITMax 1 workout with my new gear. I don't have sand for my sandbag yet, but it was cool to have the gear for everything else. And the weighted vest? Phew! Challenging. I admit was a bit weak weak in some muscle groups from last night so it was tough, but I got through it. I'm stiff in my butt and hammy's this morning but not too bad. Everything else has that I worked out but am not actually sore feeling...better than I figured I'd be. It feels good to exercise again.

A blizzard blew in last night while I was in class. Driving home was like jumping to hyperspace in the millennium falcon - I was glad I didn't have to go very far!! Today is another brutally cold day (-43 Cwith the wind) but the blizzard blew itself out so it's back to normal today. My friend in california sent me a news clip from Portland where they're talking about "heavy snow and blowing snow" and the newscaster is bundled up to the level we'd need up here...for a light snowfall and -10 C- maybe 1-2 inches. It looks like a calm regular winter day. It's funny how a snowpocalypse there is nothing here. I'm always amazed every winter how things just go on as usual here in the midst of deep winter. I take the bus so I don't have to make the poor car do things in this figure it out. The entire province of Saskatchewan was under an extreme cold weather warning this morning - I don't know if that's ever happened before. I hope it warms up soon. This cold snap is annoying...stay warm peeps!

HIIT and some deep thoughts

I signed up for a community fitness class every wednesday with a friend from work. It's every wednesday at 6 - a HIIT class. I do believe today may kill me since I've been really slack about workouts since before christmas and it's been too damn cold for regular walks. She's looking to get into better shape too so we'll both be starting out at similar levels so I feel better about that.
With life being so crazy the last while I've been just sleeping and trying to be good to myself, but I like the idea of both getting out with friends and taking a fitness class.

I've been back to eating healthy, but need more activity again, so this will be a kick to keep at it - if only so the classes don't kill me :P    I used to really like HIIT workouts so I hope it's a fun time. I'm also considering signing up for Sweatflix online and starting in with my new gear on the weekend. I'm getting ready for some good workouts starting today. Gonna build me a summer body.
Time to get to back to it and get stronger and back to my "regular" me. Then I can get some fat grafting done (you need to be your "regular" size and shape to do it so that things stay balanced) on my foob and my back tattoo completed to cover my scars. A good goal...I figure by April I should be pretty on the level.
It's tough to workout in the winter here because it's dark and cold and the whole house is chilly when you get up. I used to get up and come into the gym on the bus, but I don't know if I want to anymore. I could do with more sleep and a home workout just fine. Once you start working out in a chilly house it is all good...but on a day like to day where it's -31 and -41 with the windchill the house is pretty chilly when you get first get up. I need it I will get back to it. The duvet will not trap me any longer...

I've been doing a lot of mental exercises as well too after last month trying to sort myself out. 
The thing is - I need to learn more about what I want and like and do these things with others. This is part of me becoming more grounded and whole and will allow me to be a better partner when I am looking after myself - I realized yesterday again how likely I am when I have no preference on something to just defer to others for what to do. To me it seemed a good solution - after all if I don't really care one way or the other why not let them chose? I took it as not having an opinion and making things easier for others in that way. I never considered that this could actually be insulting to them - to not consider what I think about something and defer like that can be viewed as though I am not interested in or valuing this thing or activity at all. This isn't the case for me - but is it a good way to be? I don't think so anymore.  So...even tho sometimes I may just be picking an arbitrary choice I do need to put more thought into these things. If I do have an opinion, then expressing it is a good thing. To do this I need to think about things more and pay attention to comments of others...

Interacting with people is damn tricky. Especially when you love them. Especially when they have depression - the last thing you want to do is tip toe around and cater to their needs - it makes things all weird and unbalanced and it's not an equal relationship. It mutates things and I don't want that.
I'm glad to be getting to know some new amazing people and I hope to keep that going...

So yeah...Just wanted to pop in to say hi. Jumble out a few thoughts to see them on the page. We'll see how stiff I am tomorrow.
Later taters...

Make it so

This weekend was nice. It was emotionally tiring, but really nice. My sister came down friday night and she, my bro and I went to the funeral. J came down with some kind of crazy cold plague so he stayed home so as not to infect us all with his insane sneezing. The funeral was really nice. Small town great. The town hall in Ridgedale was full to standing room only and we got to see some family we just never get to. Terrible reason, but it was good to see them. And it was the only funeral I've ever been to to where the person being remembered was fondly spoken of for his avid use of the word cocksucker. Hee hee - my uncle's language was always very colourful...but he was also a big teddy bear. A cattle rancher and farmer who died doing his chores...I suppose there isn't a better way to go for someone like Earl. I feel so sad for my auntie and cousins, but I saw them smile and laugh through their tears remembering him. I remember how that felt when my mum died. I know they'll be OK - they have each other. :)

I spent the rest of the weekend indulging in some peaceful recovery. I made a puzzle, drank lots of my new tea (got a bunch of David's Tea for christmas - yum) and read a lot of comics. Then watched a movie. It was a normal sunday. A quiet one...soothing. The first I have had in about 5 weeks. I'd like more. I feel bad that J is sick, but that didn't make the weekend a poor one thankfully. He's been more level as well, and it's been good. Some sunlight through the clouds. I even got the stain out of the carpet with the rug shampooer so that was a bonus. Now if I can just figure out why there's a leak in the ceiling we'll be good for a while...

You know, you just never know when the ones you love will leave this earth - so tell them you love them. Make memories with them. Hug them. Call them up and have tea with them. Don't push aside things for some other time...yes alone time is necessary, but at the end of my life I'd like to be so fondly remembered as my uncle -someone who was rough around the edges, but who spent time with those he loved and worked hard. It was good to be with family and remember good times this weekend. I remembered so many good things in my life and encouraged myself to take the time to listen and love and do the little things that I want to do each day. My friend Cindi snapchatted me images throughout her weekend of moving into her new solo place and it was neat to be able to be a part of her new start even tho I was far good to know that this move is what she needs. That she will be OK. 
Every day is a chance to get things right...Tomorrow is another day to start again.
Make it so :)

mixed bag today

I have a coffee stain in my area rug. I am trying to get it out. My friend who was visiting spilled coffee and didn't mention it until later. I dabbed up most of the liquid when I knew about it, but it will take some work to get the stain out. I treated it with oxyclean and thought I got it, but it appears to require more love since there's more liquid in the rug wicking up. I will try once more with my rug shampooer just to wick up more of the stain and liquid tonight...and if it doesn't work I'll take it to someone in town next week - it's about $40 to have a stain removed by someone. It's 92 for the whole rug which is kinda tempting but I just want the stain out. I'd rather not pay, but we really love the rug. It's our soft comfy living room rug so we can sit on the floor and right now it's not nice tot sit on - the parts I cleaned are stiffer - I think it needs to be rinsed a lot more to get the oxyclean out. I'll try my best to fix it once more and then take it to the pros. I thought I'd fixed it and was all smug. Ah well.

J is of course obsessing over it and so annoyed by it. The risk of having people over is things can get wrecked...that is just how it is. I know the stain will likely come out eventually so I'll just work until it's fixed. If it's not too much then I'll bill my friends for it if J is still pissed about it later. He is annoyed that they never said anything at doesn't bother me as much. I am actually trying not to be annoyed at him being annoyed about this more than anything else- I am the one who is working to fix it so if he wants to be annoyed that I am having to spend time to fix it he can, but it's not the end of the world and I told my friend not to worry about it so I'm just gonna work at it until it's done. He is all worked up about it...and it really isn't that big of a deal to me. This sort of thing drives him yeah - fun times. I will be the patient one. It's what I do.

There is also a water stain in our ceiling upstairs...which is not cool. It appeared after a snap deep freeze weather warmed up suddenly...I suspect it's condensation in the attic. I suspect we need to put the insulation in place where the chimney was to prevent condensation build up...hopefully that will stop it. And I will need to paint the ceiling...which I despise...sigh. Ah well - such is the fun of owning a house. I will be doing the work and J will be fretting about it. That's how we roll...frustrating - but I get things done.

In more serious news my uncle just suddenly died of a heart attack while out doing chores on the farm the other day. The funeral is saturday. We weren't overly close, but it makes me worry about my dad because they're around the same age. I suppose going while doing what you love is the best way to go, but I feel so bad for my Aunt. She'll be all alone on the farm now...she was working with him when he died and she's a nurse so she did all she could, but wow. Hug the ones you love - you really never know what's gonna happen.

So yeah - mixed bag of a day today. I'll head home and work on the rug and see how things go from there...
fingers crossed...

Hump day

It's good to be back at work after the break. Having an increased focus has been neat the last few days - I hope it will help me be more accomplished at work and not feel like such a derp. Not having my home life in shambles and getting some sleep is also a bonus. I need to start to feel like a useful hooman here and it's sort of starting. I'm glad.

I hope January will be a good month. A start to a good year. I hope to get up to workout tomorrow morning as well. My arm has healed up enough that I will be able to work out without worrying about damaging it - it isn't sore anymore and sweating won't harm it at this point. I don't really technically need to cover up my scrape anymore, but being in a lab I feel it's appropriate. It shouldn't leave a scar, which is good...I have enough of those already.

My old bestie friend Cindi who has found herself separating from her husband after almost 20 years just got her condo keys's a happy/sad time for her. I'm so glad that she is finally able to move forward with this. I came to the point this holiday season in my own life where I actually understand how such a thing could happen with a couple, even after so long...and if you both don't want to try and work to fix things...or it just can't be fixed somehow and it's something you just can't handle anymore? Well, you sometimes have to just face up to it...sometimes you should just move on. There's no shame in it. There is no sense in being miserable for the rest of your life. Life is too damn short for that. I was hoping to go visit her this month for moral support, but she will be moving all this month and will be stressed and busy so we are scheming for me to go see her at the start of february once she is settled in and can have time to breathe and I am very much looking forward to it. I can't wait to see her and talk to her...she is a strong and amazing woman and a dear friend...and I hope that this new year will be kind to her. To both of us. I hope to be strong too...and to be able to work forward with things to improve them. My health. My mind. My relationship with J - to encourage him to get the help he needs so that he can be more whole. I think it is crazy that cancer was not something that we had problems with...but life...depression? These are things you live with and things that you can't pretend away...and things  that can be deal breakers...things like that you cannot always control in others. I *can* control how I respond to them though. And so THAT is what I will be focusing on in the near future. Plant the seeds. Watch them grow. Kindness. Respect. These are things I will be offering instead of bitterness and anger.

Well...I should be off...gotta wrap up and head home. I was gifted some David's Tea certificates for christmas and I plan to go and get a shwack of tea this evening for my slurping pleasure. And I actually want to go there is that too. It's the little things :)

Later taters.

Blooming initiated

Well hi there.
I am glad to say things have gotten better. There were tough times. VERY tough times. Almost insurmountable...but love as they say conquers all and I am very glad to say that in the end we made it through. Having a visit from an old dear friend and his new lovely girlfriend for the last few days helped a great deal. They head home this AM so we shall see how the new year goes again with them gone...I hope we both can continue to improve in our soltitude.

As for me? Well I have a hematite ring on my right hand to remind me of this in the new year:
-I am loved unconditionally by my family
-I must decide each morning to be kind, optimistic and weigh my words before I say them
-I can stand up for myself and be strong...and I can do this without being cruel
-I must work to pay more attention to the world around me...both to words and to things. This will keep me safe and show due respect to others.
-I must explore my opinions and desires dfor things and make sure that I do what I need to to be happy

That's a lot of things...but they are all necessary.

My family gave me a Bodyrock equipment bundle of a sandbag, equalizer bars, bosu ball and weighted vest for christmas so once I figure out what is happening with my neck (my glands are swollen and  may be catching something...or maybe not) I plan to get into being healthy again. The gyms are insanely busy now but I have all the kit I need to work out at home. I just need a few bags of sand and I'm good to go. I hope to grab that today along with some groceries. I indulged over the holidays and enjoyed it but I honestly don't want any more junk...I am done with it for a while.

It is time to be good to myself and those I love and see where this takes me.

I hope your holidays were nice :)