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Posts Tagged ‘healing’

7789e94bca6366dd3748ea99f7caa512 It’s been three days since surgery, and I today I hit a turning point. Thank you to everyone who has left such nice comments, tweets, FB posts, and emails. I’ve read and appreciate every single one.  They mean more than you know.

Since Monday, the day of surgery, I’ve been in terrible pain.  Pain from the incisions and the surgery itself.  Pain from the extra gas they flooded my stomach with so they could work.  Pain from the staples and the fact that they cut away 80% of my stomach for the VSG (vertical sleeve gastrectomy) surgery.

I expected there would be discomfort, even some pain, but what I’ve experienced the past several days wasn’t anything I was prepared for.  I think it’s sort of like childbirth – everyone who has had WLS is so pleased with their results that they forget about the pain of the process immediately after surgery.  Of all the people I’ve spoken to about the surgery, no one mentioned this kind of pain.  And the thing is, I have a really high pain tolerance.

But today I turned a corner.  I went on the Sassy Sleever group on FB looking for tips and was reminded about taking GasX to help with the bloating.  That worked like a miracle!  Then one of my friends pushed me by saying I needed to get up, get out, and walk – no excuses.  I’m so glad he gave me that kick in the butt, because it was what I needed.  I’d been walking around the house, up the stairs, etc., but I hadn’t ventured outside yet.

Today I decided that I had been in this slump long enough.  I cleaned myself up, put on a bit of BB cream and a touch of blush, got dressed, and went outside to take a slow, short walk in the sun.  My mom accompanied me, because I don’t feel strong enough to go outside on my own for a walk just yet.

Between the walk, the GasX, and a more positive attitude, I feel like myself again.  I am so glad that I made the decision to have the VSG, and I’m so proud of myself for the steps that I took to get here.  I’m looking forward to heading home tomorrow and really starting to live my new life.  My journey is just beginning, but I’m confident about where I’m heading.

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I woke up today feeling stronger. I’d cried and cried all day yesterday, and each time I was asked what had happened, and then I had to recount the terrible tale of Lulu’s death, I started crying all over again.  It was awful.  I definitely miscalculated going in to work.  I thought it would do me good to be around other people, to “keep busy” and to get out of the house.  And while it was nice to get some comfort from my colleagues and students, it was a really tough day.

This morning, though, I felt better.  It was still strange not to wake up to Lulu’s paw on my head, encouraging me to get up and go out with her for her early morning potty break.  It was strange not to have to worry about opening the front door to retrieve the paper.  And it was weird seeing all of her toys and things lying about the house, knowing that she’ll never play with them again.  But I felt better.

And then Minnie bolted into the house, as she does every morning, and she went into the living room, searching for Lulu.  When she didn’t find her, she came up to me and gave me a quick hello.  Then she bolted into my bedroom, as excited as ever, hoping to find Lulu there.  And then she came back out looking so confused and I shed a few tears, because it just broke my heart.  I think Minnie is the only other being who can understand how much I loved Lulu, because she loved her just as much.  They were poochy pals who spent all day, every day together since before Christmas.  They were Lucy and Ethel, Laverne and Shirley, and on Wednesday they were almost Thelma and Louise. And I realized today that Minnie and I are going to comfort each other and together, we’ll get through this.

There have been so many kind notes, emails, and messages on FB left by my friends.  Sometimes I feel like I don’t have a very wide circle of friends because we’re all so busy with our lives, but then something terrible and heartbreaking like this happens, and I realize just how many people care about me.  That outpouring of love and support helps to warm my heart and heal my soul.

So many of you left such thoughtful comments on yesterday’s blog post and/or on Twitter.  People who had read this blog for over a year but never, ever left a comment came to the forefront and de-lurked to offer their condolences.  To know that so many of you cared that much made me feel so loved.

Yesterday my mom bought me the stone that you see at the top of this blog post, and I loved it.  I placed it in the yard, underneath a beautiful tree and between two bright pink hydrangea bushes.  So Lulu’s memorial will always be surrounded by beauty and life.

As I was getting dressed today, I decided to wear Lulu’s dog tag on my chain.  Having something that she wore around her neck around my own neck makes me feel close to her.  And it offers some comfort. I plan on wearing it everyday for a while.  Until I don’t need to anymore, I guess.

My dad and I went to see Limitless (which was pretty good, actually).  He wanted me to get out of the house and not dwell on sad thoughts too much.  Being able to escape into the movie was perfect; it took my mind off of everything and let me have a couple of hours of peace.  I came out of there feeling renewed.

And when I got home, I had a call from my uncle, offering me his love and the advice that I should get another doggie soon.  And I agree with him.  No one will ever replace Lulu, because she’s irreplaceable.  But now that I know what it means to love a dog, I know that I need one in my life.  I have so much love to give, and I get so much out of having a dog in my life.  It’s my lifestyle; I’m a dog lover.  I’m going to wait until school gets out in June, but I will be contacting the same breeders that brought Lulu into my life, because they were such nice people and she had an amazing start on life in their home. One of my friends wrote on FB that Lulu was going to find a special friend for me and bring her into my life so that I wasn’t alone. What a nice thought that is: that Lulu would help to select my next puppy.

After listening to his message, the phone rang again and it was LCS, a friend from high school who I haven’t spoken on the phone with in over 15 years.  She and I lost touch for a bit and then recently reconnected on FB about two years ago.  In that time, we’ve stayed in touch via email and FB, but we’ve never actually talked.  She is a huge animal lover, and she was so concerned about me that she said she had to call and find out how I was doing.  It meant so much that she would reach out that way, and I told her that I’m so sorry that it took a tragedy like this for us to talk, but that we’d have to catch up once a month or so from now on, and she agreed.

And Lulu will be buried in Napa Valley, at the Bubbling Well Pet Memorial Park.  It’s gorgeous there, from the photos:

So now when my sister and I (and whichever friends can make it) go to Napa for my 40th birthday, we can make a special trip to visit Lulu’s resting place.  It makes me feel good to know she’ll be near so much natural beauty.

I’m still so sad that Lulu isn’t here, but I’m feeling less out of control about it.  I am moving through the grieving process, and while I know I’m going to have some very tough days ahead, I also know that Lulu is always going to be with me.  Tomorrow and Sunday I’m going to select a bunch of photos of her and put them into a special frame that I’ll keep in my dining room, overlooking the yard.  So that I can just look over I’ll be able to see her in her happiest moments.

I’ll love you forever, my sweet girl, Lulu.  You were the best puppy anyone could have ever asked for.  I’ll miss you every single day.  But I am grateful that I had you in my life at all, because you changed me forever for the better.

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For the month of December, I’ll be participating in Reverb 10. Each day gives a new prompt, which is a chance to reflect on 2010 and manifest what’s next in 2011.

December 19 – Healing
What healed you this year? Was it sudden, or a drip-by-drip evolution? How would you like to be healed in 2011? (Author: Leonie Allan)

This question is a bit “new agey” for me, but yet I can relate to it.  Interesting how that works, right?  Moving out of that terrible living situation that I was in has  completely transformed me – I’m happier, healthier, and feel so much safer.  I’m one step closer to living the life I was meant to have.  Living in this great place makes me feel so positive, so vibrant, and alive.  I finally feel content.  I can’t wait to have lots of people over to this house because I want to show it off.  I’m actually looking for excuses to have small gatherings (which, if you have any fun themed ideas for parties, let me know).

In 2011, I’m hoping to heal my body by losing a significant amount of weight.  First on my own and then via lap band surgery.  As I sit here today I know I won’t be able to imagine all the ways that my life will be improved by this, but I am so excited to find out.

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