I'm starting to feel restless with just drawing. I might go and tidy up my studio tomorrow. It's been around a month since I spent any significant time in there. My heart is feeling the absence of that space. I wrote "I've noticed this pillow on the chair a lot this week. My dad sits with the pillow for his back. I've been looking at the pattern more because of it's migration from the couch. I seem to be better at constructing images with hard lines and angles today." I also notice my writing is improving, it is closer to my usual scrawl than it was last week. Less spelling errors and repeated words too.
I've been home from the hospital for a week now. It's been an interesting week for me recovery wise. Every day has held a new bit of progress as well as a surprise or two on things that still affect me in subtle ways. At first I was going to write a post on all this little things that keep coming up. However, after reflecting about it, I think I will instead turn that on it's head and write a post of all the things that I am looking forward to improving on. Attitude is everything.
Some of these things sound pretty minor but will change my day dramatically once I master them. Some of these things are also going to be indicators that I am ready to get back to work with instructing and studio work. I find writing little goals like this gives me something to aim for day to day.
Eliminating Mandatory Nap Time
Don't get me wrong, I love a good nap. What I don't love is this newly adopted narcolepsy that came with the surgery. I nap minimum one hour a day, it is not unusual to nap multiple times for up to 4 hours. These are groggy deep naps where I wake up slowly and refreshment washes ashore for about a half an hour before I feel ready to get up. I have zero problem falling asleep at bedtime. I feel like a cranky, exhausted and emotional toddler if nap time is delayed. It won't be long before I get caught at the grocery store having a tantrum.
Being Able to Stand Around Without Leaning on Stuff
My balance is fine, I'm physically fit enough to stand unassisted and I don't get light headed. For some reason standing and talking to someone or waiting in a long line is excruciating. It wipes me out and this mystifies me. I have improved quite a bit in the sense that last week, standing for a few minutes felt impossible. This week I'm okay if I'm leaning on a counter or door frame. Stick me in the middle of a field and I would start getting worried.
Walking My Dog
I have a beautiful husky/greyhound cross. Gentle, kind and even tempered UNTIL you stick a leash on her. Normally I start every morning with a half hour walking her through the trees in search of those elusive local deer she can always smell. This week it is icy on our local paths and she just pulls too hard when she is excited. On Monday my dad and I started going on my usual route but he took the leash so I could focus on not slipping on the slick spots. Next Monday, I will be on my own. Judging from my strength returning each day, I hope that I can handle her on my own. Or all the ice melts. Or both.
Walking is getting old. I'm frustrated that I can't just spring forward into a steady gait. Yet the idea of running is terrifying (and I'm not going to push this until I see the doctor for follow up because I am aware there are risks with impact sports) I feel like if I run, my incision will open up and my brain might fall out. Or my head will fall off. Something rational like that. Today I rushed instinctively to get to a ringing phone and my body said HECK NO, DO NOT DO THAT. So, I'm clearly not rushing this one.
Maintaining My Focus
To be totally honest, I start to fade pretty quickly during involved conversations, long articles, and nagging my kids. I have found myself sheepishly saying "I'm sorry, I just realized I was totally not listening to the last part - what was it you were telling me?" I just start to glaze over and withdraw from the moment. This is particularly noticeable when it is too loud or late in the day. This is not normal for me and I don't notice at all that it is starting to happen until something occurs and I think "I have no idea what they are talking about"
Normally I am slow and steady. In pretty much everything I do, I am very intuitive with saving a little extra for the end and finishing well. Running, making art, and instructing classes. Lately I seem to be overestimating how much energy I'll have and underestimating how long things will take. Which ties into my next goal....
Keeping Track of Time
Being married to a wonderful man of German/Mennonite heritage means I am used to watching the clock and being ready for everything. Not this week. Hours and hours just slip away. Usual things that indicate the passage of time like being hungry, having appointments or working are not really present right now so I find I am constantly surprised at how late it suddenly got. Dinner time and bed time get me every single day. BLAMMO.
The last three points are very intertwined. I might look like I'm totally back to normal but those little struggles make the days just disappear. I know clearly what days all my appointments are and what the date is but I have a hard time stringing all those things together into something that feels like a normal routine or structure. If I have something booked for next Tuesday and I know today is Thursday that feels like it could be weeks away in my head and I have no idea what to do with the time in between. Chores and visits and things that aren't fixed firmly just seem to appear out of nowhere.
In other news, my staples are all loose and jangle around. I can't stop fiddling with them and thinking about them. Everything is healing up nice though. I get the staples out on Monday. I can hardly wait.
To read the whole story of my Meningioma click here.