Zombies! Run!

I've been having fun getting back to running. My eating hasn't been stellar so far (hello growler of delicious sour ale on the weekend!) but I've been consistent at doing my couch to 5K runs -so far so good. I'm also making sure I go to bed earlier - I had a weekend to myself this weekend and I honestly was exhausted and slept for most of it, so I need to get more sleep... I need at least 7 hours a night. With me trying to get up at 6 or 550 to exercise this will be even more critical. It's odd how those few extra minutes mean so much :) I have been waking up at my alarm or jsut before the last while so I hope I'm doing better.

With runs 3-4 days a week I will start doing some upper and lower weights/exercises too...I'm thinking MWF runs, Tuesday upper body, Thursday lower body with weekends being what they are. If I can fit in yoga at work I will too, but it seems I have only been able to get to yoga nidra on thursdays so far- it's very relaxing and stress relieving, but it's totally not exercise so I'm not gonna count it as that. I will try and hit the yoga on tuesdays if I can at lunch too and see how that fits into my days. It's a good way to take a break from my day and keep my stress down.

I have been loving the Zombies Run 5K learn to run app. It's turning running into a little game and since I used to joke I did cardio to prepare for outrunning zombies it's very fitting. The app even ties into my GPS so I can map out where and how far I've gone each time which is cool. The first 3 weeks are free, but I'll be happy to pay the $3 for the other 5 weeks of training - I'm just in week 2 and it's been fun so far. I can listen to my own music too and the audio comes through over it so it's really cool. I started using the Cto5K app I've used in the past which is similar and quite good too (but with less zombies heheh).

And wow...exercise makes me feel better. I sleep better. I deal with things better. I'm happier. I do eat more so I have to watch that, but it just reaffirms why I do this...it really is good for me.


Life lately has been encouraging. Knowing I'm done all my surgeries and treatments is...well...hard to believe but ever so cool. J has been doing well lately too. He's been able to get help and his work with himself together with some medications has really transformed him back towards the J I know and love...which is absolutely amazing. I have my J back and I am eternally grateful. The demons of depression and anxiety are still there and some days are harder than others, but he has some tools and ways to better deal with them now. He's aware of it and he loves himself and me enough to do the hard work to be healthy..so yeah - we are doing well too. I am learning ways to communicate better and trying to be helpful while learning to see my own boundaries and deal with my own shit.

I have to say...reading about Anthony Bourdain really affected me this week. I respected the guy - he was irreverent and flawed and still inspired me in a lot of ways and seeing someone give in to their depression and take their own life is so very sad. Until you've lived with depression or someone who lives with depression it's really hard to even imagine or see just what it can do to you and how it can twist everything you see and feel. After all I've been through to fight for my health I admit it's utterly foreign to me to devalue my life like that, but I can see how it could happen. It reaffirmed to me that it is so important to be there for others - sometimes we may be the only one who can pull them back form the edge. I've been taking a lot of mental health first aid through work lately and it's been a real eye opener...Hopefully it will help me. If you eevr get the opportunity to take it do it.

Hope you're having a good day. I am.

Welcome to the Jungle

Getting the yard in shape. Ish.
Mowed the back and cleared things out so it looks decent and I can have a fire. The back deck is cleaned off and ready for chilling too. That is where I presently am - debating if I want to go down to the park or not. I think perhaps I do...

I tried to work in the front yard and after pulling a while bin of trees and weeds you even can't tell, but I will persevere. Years of neglect while I was in treatment has let the weeds take over and last fall my world imploded for a while so the yard needs LOTS of love. I will do my best to fight the weeds.  If I lose I've decided int he fall I will rent a "dragon" flame weed killer and after I've destroyed them all I can put down landscaping fabric and rocks and start again. I like our vines, but you can't rake with them and I want to be able to maintain it better. The neighbors are trying to sell their house too so I figure I should at least make an effort so that potential buyers don't think they are moving in next to a crack house or something.

I am really enjoying how the back yard and deck are though. Makes me happy. :)
This weekend the weather is kinda miserable so I replaced my rusty BBQ grill and old tank so I am set to BBQ. I don't know what I will BBQ, but I like having the option. Between that and doing a bit more in the front yard I feel I'm making a dent. I've found a home for the big old compost bin I have had but never use and discovered a bunch of firewood I have I forgot about. Oh yes there will be fire. I moved the firepit last year and I want to sip wine by the fire...

The cats are loving the screen deck, although my dad only made one ledge for them to sit on so they bicker over it and the one who doesn't get it sits and pouts. I will ask him if he'll make another one for us so they can both have a place to chill and look out the window from.

Square One

...I have been cleared to exercise again. Other than a few spitting stitches on an incision I am fine and well healed. They annoy me, since I still have bandaids stuck on my boob and it means I can't have a bath, but at least I can exercise although I can't sleep on my side or front for another 2 weeks (I can't wait...)
Now that I can, I've been attacking our yard and deck all week and it feels good to be active again. Bonus points to have a yard that I will feel like chilling in as well and the deck is clean and ready for chilling. I have plans to get a bit of used furniture for the deck to replace some beat up stuff (like a futon or something)...and I have all the cool square bricks leftover from our chimney that I plan to make some planters out of...so once I get the worst of the weeds out of the front yard that's my next plan. Then tear down the old sheds and make a new one with my dad...and then paint the deck...and...and...man years of neglect while I was sick followed by a fall where no yard work was done have made for lots of things to do. So...time to do them I suppose...
After pulling out my summer clothes I see I've put on a few pounds while recovering from surgery and I'm not amused. It was tasty, but I drank too much beer and ate too many snackey cakes (mmm...delicious snackeycakes) and wasn't active enough. So...I need to get back to it. I've been walking to work the past few weeks but I'm in all of my "upper limit clothes" and they aren't too comfortable....and THAT is my signal to get my shit together. That and the fact that I like to wear some specific outfits when the weather gets hot and right now...well they currently feel dodgy...so time to get to it.
I admit I am really nervous to step on the scale and see what's up and take some measurements, but I need a baseline. I am excited to get back to a couch to 5K program and some weights again for strength though. Getting up 30 minutes earlier is not going to be fun, but I can work to get to bed earlier (she says as she is on the internet at 1140pm...um...derp). Lunchtime yoga at work is also something I'd like to get back to at least a few days a week too. I'm nervous...but I know once I get past the point where I am reassured I will no longer die while I'm running I will be OK. I shall log what I do here to keep accountable so I'll be around more again. Cya later tater. :)

Summer has arrived!

Well...it's been a while hey?
I'm mostly healed up now and have honestly just taken a break form a lot of online stuff lately. It's like facebook steals most of the things I would say here...I changed my latest format change back...I just hated it. I figured if I don't even want to read it who will...

I'm healed up pretty well from surgery. It took forever it seems and the surgical glue they use on incisions is insanely lingering... It was 7 weeks before I finally was almost healed. I've "spit" 3 stitches around my nipple which is annoying because basically your body just pushed the undissolved sitches out via the most easy place, which is the recent incision. So I have 3 tiny bandaids on my boob while it heals up. I honestly don't care except I really want a bath :) Patience...

My lifted boob looks pretty good and although my fat grafted foob is a bit smaller than it still they really point a lot closer to the same direction so I'm glad I had it done. I couldn't wear pants for a  few weeks until my hips were less sore, but overall it went well. Other than the maddening itching as nerves reconnect I've got no complaints.

I have started to walk to work again with the nicer weather and sould really get back to workouts - I've been cleared to start back in slowly and I really am jiggly so I should at least try to do a little work on myself to get stronger. I went to a small music fest this weekend where JJ did lasers and stage design and I couldn't dance like I used to. That must be fixed :)

It was nice to be out in the woods and hang with friends, relax in the sunshine while I danced to great music. JJ's stage and lighting and lasers were fabulous at Bass in the Bush - he used the grove of trees as a backdrop and created shimmering patterns all around the stage area. I helped him solder some LED light strings onto connectors that he attached to various parts of the stage so he could change the colors on it to match the other stage areas. A local wood carver created a big face out of wood and it was centre stage with glowing eyes that pulsed with the rest of the stage.  Our friends had their food truck there and others had a cookoo clown theme camp (complete with crafternoon tea)...other friends were DJing...it felt like family affair :) It was a great long weekend and a great way to start off the summer.  Even though JJ worked most nights and I volunteered a lot of the day I still got to spend a bit of time with him and had a lot of great people to hang out with in between. I tried to take some photos but my camera phone is pretty sucky so I don't have a lot to show for it...there was a photographer there so I look forward to seeing pics.

Now that I'm cleared to do stuff again I'm looking forward to clearing off our deck for the summer this weekend and planning just what to get up to around the yard and in the wide world. JJ is working almost every weekend at festivals and I can't be at all of them, but I will be at a few and I hope we can have some hiking breaks at some point. I have to do some yard work and build a shed as well so I'll be busy enough...from here on in it's bigger and better. No more surgeries.

I can rebuild each part of my life. It's tricky sometimes, but this life is like nothing else. :)

*ding* You're done!

My final plastic surgery related to my breast cancer happened yesterday morning. No more surgeries. Thank frog.
I was the first surgery of the day and went home by supper time and and I have to say this has been the least painful surgery so far. The fat grafting isn't too bad pain wise and there was no muscle work so my chest is sore but not unreasonably so. Of course I am taking T3s, but no heavy duty pain stuff and I feel pretty decent. I can get around without too much soreness - feeling better than you thought is a good thing. My other surgeries were a lot more invasive.
My old boob matches my new boob a lot more now - it's been lifted and there's more fat in my foob so it's a bit closer in size. They took the fat out above my hips from my small muffin top and with the swelling I look super super hippy below that area now tho - like there's an even bigger difference between my waist and hips (there used to be before so it's really pronounced now - almost like a shelf) - I hope some of that goes away as I heal cuz right no wit looks almost comical... but I think it went OK overall. I suppose a little dedication at the gym will help smooth things out too in the end...I am wierdly swollen there so there's no way to tell just what it'll be like until I heal - I recall the last time I looked odd too so I'm gonna try not to worry about that now. As for my chest I will get a better peek in a mirror when I can take off the bandages tomorrow. I just saw a top down view at the hospital when my doc checked things out before he let me go home. It seemed a lot more balanced and looked nice to me.....and he was quite pleased, so that's always a good sign.

Now I just get to rest and relax for a few weeks and heal up. I probably don't need 2 whole weeks off, but I can have them if I want (my job is awesome) so I'm gonna take it day by day and see how I feel. Knowing it's the last surgery tho and I'm done?
SO glad. 

Real Time

Last night I felt good enough to start the 30 day real time workout challenge from Bodyrock. I've gotten a subscription to their Sweatflix system and for $9 a month you get unlimited access to all of their workouts and they play on any laptop or device via an app. I love the workouts - lots of HIIT stuff. I can do anything for 30 seconds, so it suits me well. I found all my gear and got to it. My cold is pretty much gone now so I have no excuse. I like real time workouts where I workout with someone...I'm pretty lazy if I'm on my own.
This morning I got up and did day 2  so well done me. 2 whole days. Ooh ah. I am a bit stiff but nothign too bad so far although I need to get up a bit earlier to make sure i have more time for stretching after. I pressed snooze a few times and I had to rush to not miss my bus. I figure this 30 day plan should bring me right up to my surgery so I will do my best to stick to it and get as fit as I can before my surgery on March 14.
J will be home today some time and our friend Rocket will be here to visit for a few days too. She is the is much younger (mid 20s) but is still a wonderful friend...it's strange to connect with people far younger than you, but really...if I ever had a daughter I would want her to turn out like Rocket.  It will be good to see her for a bit....she moved to Montreal with her fiance in the fall and has been lonely and missing all her friends so she's come out to visit for a while here and in BC and Alberta. There is a big event this weekend I'm helping put on (well OK I'm just looking after the bar...) where JJ is doing lasers at as well so I have a fun time to look forward to at the end of the week. Tonight I have to run and get groceries and will try and get tasty healthy food. A  new grocery store opened in my neighborhood and it's their 15% off day so I'll get all the foods and ooh and aaah at the place a bit.

For now - I must go have my lunch and get back to it. It's been a busy work week.

Portlandia

I just spent a week in Portland for management training. It was amazing.
Not only is Portland a neat little city, with lots of great food and beer but the training was invaluable. Even though it rained the whole time we were there I had an amazing time.

I'm very lucky to have a boss who understands that people aren't born leaders...and has encouraged us to go and take training wherever we can to be better at our job. Normally I am leery of training and assume it's going to be crummy buzz-word filled feel-good rubbish. This training was not that. It focused on looking at ourselves and discovering how to be more trustworthy. How to look outward, and how after we work to get our own mind in order we can work to support and help the people we live and work with to be better as well. So much of this was like a whack across the head with a 2 by 4 - so many things to apply in my personal life. Literally life changing.

Being on my own allowed me to explore and enjoy and learn and think...and also eat donuts in bed and have tasty beer and horchata and coffee in the morning. I went to training with a few coworkers who I get along with who also love to try new food and beer and walk so we explored a lot of Portland. I even had family drive down from Vancouver for the day to visit and we drove around exploring the city together in the rain. I got to fangirl out and head to te Old Portland - the wine bar opened by the lead singer of the Dandy Warhols that's attached to their recording studio and have wine there...and chat with the owner (squee)...good Bordeaux and conversation. I find it so refreshing to meet people I've admired for decades and find them to be nice people after all. Sometimes that isn't the case so that was a bonus. Add in Powell's books, Voodoo donuts, the tram, the amazing medical centre at the university, great Lebanese, chicken and waffles, ramen, kimchi and cheese croquettes and tonnes of craft beer and it was definitely a good trip. My healthy living derailed about halfway through, but I did walk a lot and I worked out a few times in the hotel gym (which was amazing). I am stressing out because my surgery is mid march, but it will all be fine. My brain keeps panicking and wants to be thin for the fat grafting so I don't go and lose the fat I'm having transferred later, but that's not reallyhow it works so I need to just relax and work to be healthy. I'll be resting up for a few weeks after so it will just be what it will be. Thankfully the weather should be nicer by then so I can go for lots of walks while I heal - walking really is the best thing when you're healing. And, best of all, it'll be my last surgery related to my cancer treatment. Thank frog. Finally done. (knock on a forest of wood)

I caught a head cold on the way home and have felt very tired and lethargic all the past week. I finally feel almost normal, although I feel all jiggly and bleh again, so I'm getting back to regular exercise again this week now that I feel up to it. J has been away most of the week in BC for a few shows with his lasers and it was good to be lazy and sick while he was away...he's driving back with our friend Rocket and should be home tuesday. He's been having a good time out there and it's good to see him doing what he loves with a crew and musician he's worked with before.

But - it's monday AM. I should get to it. I have work to do and then I hope to sneak away at lunch for yoga. I have some delicious split pea and ham soup for lunches this week (I bought a big old ham on sale last week and have been eating off of it...mmm...).

Have a good week :)

Technical difficulties - please stand by

I got bored and thought I'd tweak my blog template...it's been a while.

dear frog I have no idea what I'm doing...........hmmm

I feel like someone stole my sausage. Well, no turning back now :P


It's a date

Just got a letter in the mail with my final final plastic surgery date - March 14. Phew - so yeah... 2 months until my last (knock on wood) surgery date ever. Lift my real boob to match the fake one better and take some fat from my muffin top and pad out Frankie a bit more. The fat grafting will probably hurt more than the lift, but we shall see. I am supposed to be off work for 2-3 weeks, so I anticipate heading back to work at the start of April. I am glad to have a timeline and know that it'll all soon be over. My doc has said that after this I'll probably be as good as I can get and so that'll be enough for me...time to get on with life.

It's given me a bit of a kick in the ass to decide I'll go a bit more hard core with my workouts and see how it all goes. Being as close to my ideal weight as possible will be helpful for the surgery, since my fake boob doesn't gain weight like the real one does, so it's trickier to match it well if I'm not close to where I want to be in the end. I pulled out my old copy of Insanity and decided to start it this week before I could talk myself out of it. Did the fit test today and kept my scores...we shall see how I progress over the next month. Having a concrete goal and date always helps me focus - Here's hoping I can stick to it. I remember it being intense, but doable. We shall see.

I am excited because next week I go to Portland for 6 days for training for work. I never did get to Portland when I was in the US last fall, so I am hoping there will be some cool things to do in the evenings. For now, I'm just gathering up stuff and passport and all those fun things.

I should get to it - lots of lab stuff to do this week since I'll be away next one. Have a fabulous week!

The year of the wow


The changes in my partner in the last month have been remarkable. I really am quite in awe of his work, not only being done on himself, but also at our lives. He is taking time to deal with some anxiety and some relationships that have been toxic for him and find more fulfilling work to be busier and more fulfilled. Since January he has been on a quest to reorganize our home with his time that he has to spare at home and our house is literally being transformed. His goal is to have the 3rd level as a studio madness workshop and I am absolutely on board with that - all his stuff in one area and not all over the house? Cool.
Areas of the home that were full of stuff and clutter are now clean and useful and things have homes so we can better keep them organised. He was inspired once h did a bit of organising to finally go through things in the house - I am not good at decluttering. I just make new piles. He is tossing and ordering and...well...wow. There is a whole part of the basement fully open now that I stood in last night that I honestly have not been able to get into for YEARS. It's really amazing.

He's also been offered full time work with a local lighting company who do live events and theatre, and they are treating him really well. 1 week officially there and it's been great so far. It all came out of the live work he was doing the last few months at a local theatre. He's learning new equipment and getting to do what he loves with people who also like to do lighting and decor. He's also found a collaborator for working with lights, video and lasers here in town who is as into things as he is so for the first time in a long time he has the potential to create and make things again and isn't tied to toxic unhealthy people who bring him down.

I don't know if it's a combination of therapy and medication and life and work and fullfillment but J is so much more positive and caring. He's even more aware of when he says things without a filter and is trying to be a bit more...kind. I am really in love and the edginess and stress that was so prevalent in our lives last year has drifted off into the breeze to leave behind our love. It sure helps that I really love when he does things around the house and it's amazing to see him and not me working so hard to make our home amazing. I really would not be able to do this. I am super busy at work right now, but am doing my part to maintain clarity and pick away at things I feel need work as well - mostly trying to make sure we both eat healthy and workout regularly. I've been reading/listening to "the happiness project" and I think 2018 is going to be a renewed focus on contentment, being present and decluttering/organizing so that where I live makes me happy.

My life is so nice now. I am full of gratitude and hope.

2018 is the year of the wow.



...and also the new Beck album is seriously great. Listen to it. Go on...