Sunday, July 8, 2012

What I Need


It was probably about a year ago when I wrote a post about "what I need."  In fact, it may have actually been called that, but this time around, it's for different reasons.  Way different.

It's Sunday evening, and I'm sitting at home alone after a wonderful weekend of visiting an old friend... literally old...she's 89.  (See photos).

Ardes and I in front of her garden.  July 8, 2012.  Photo by Laura D. 

Our badass pose.  July 8, 2012.  Photo by Laura D. 

Anyhow... shoulder surgery is on Thursday, and I kid you not... I'm terrified.

But rather than write about how scared I am, I thought it might be good to write a list of needs.  I HATE asking for help...I've spent 28 years pushing "help" away... but I figure if I put it out there ahead of time, maybe it will help me (and you).

Here's what it looks like, by the way.  I have surgery sometime in the morning on Thursday.  I'll find out either tomorrow or Tuesday what the exact time will be.  Then, for 6 weeks I will wear an immobilizer, which until either this Tuesday or Thursday I won't know if that means I can use my hand for anything or not.  I'm getting surgery on my right shoulder, which is my dominant side...so if I can't use my hand (knowing I can't move the rest of my arm), things like writing are going to be hard.  I'm taking Thursday and Friday off, with the plan of returning to work on the following Monday.

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What I need from me (because it's only fair to make myself a list if I am going to put one out there for other people) :

-I need to clean my apartment.  It needs to be organized and clean, so that I can feel comfortable and somewhat happy.

-I need to get as much schoolwork done as possible, because the idea of one handed typing for 6 weeks is not appealing (although it is my reality I'm afraid).

-I need to have a daily photo challenge.... I've got my plan for July, and a few ideas for August.  I realized today that this daily photo challenge is a great thing for me, and helps me see the world differently (or more intentionally).  If I can't run, skip, bike, etc... I might as well have an artistic/creative goal to strive towards.

-I need to stock up on food.  Easy to make food, or at least easy to prepare.  Nothing bad for me, or gross... but being mindful that if I'm one handed for a while, I need to be smart when planning meals.  What this might mean is drinking a lot of protein shakes.  Oh, and grilling chicken... I can do that with one hand.

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What I need from my friends/family/random-non-creepy-people:

-Immediate needs I foresee are things like help getting dressed, showering, etc.  I've got me a special someone to help out with these needs.  (Hey girl, Heyyyy!)

- I need folks to check in with me.  And not just the first week, but during weeks 5 and 6 too.  I worry that I'm going to be "forgotten" after week one.

- In terms of checking in, that might be something as simple as a phone call, text, or email.

- I have a feeling I'm going to have a hard time not being able to run around/work out.  I'd really love to hang out with people who want to do fun/relaxing things, such as watch movies, cook dinners, read, and just chill.  I don't need to do anything too wild.  And truth be told, I often appreciate low key days/evenings.

- I'll probably need help with things like folding my laundry.  I imagine as soon as I wont be able to do laundry, because I've got one good arm, I'll really want to fold EVERYTHING!  You know how that works, right?  I can't be the only one who does things like that.

- Does anyone like to type papers?  I don't want you to write it for me...but if there's a way I can find someone to type while I talk, that would be dope.  I will certainly have time to get school work done while I am recovering...and like the laundry thing, I have a feeling that as soon as I can't type, I'll really want to type and finish my papers.

- I'm going to need people to know that I hate asking for help, I'll push back, I'll probably be a bitch on occasion.... but deep down, I might really need to be taken care of for a while.

- I'm not fat, nor do I really worry about gaining weight, but being strong and healthy is important to me.  I'm mentioning this for 2 reasons.  1. I need to make sure I'm eating well, and might need some help with this.  I LOVE to cook, and I like to eat good food, but it maybe a pain to do it alone, so if you also like to cook, come over (or ask me over) so we can eat together!  2. I worry sometimes that I'll end up drinking too much beer when I'm in recovery.  As of now, I don't think I drink too much, but I also for the most part am pretty active.  I think during this 6 week period, the less I drink, the better, both for my physical and my emotional health.  What this means is, I may need some extra support not to just walk over to the bar and sulk over an IPA because I "can't do anything else with my busted shoulder."

- I need you to acknowledge that this is scary and hard for me.  That as tough and badass as I appear and really am... deep down, there's a part of me that really needs to be loved and cared for.

- That said, I can't put this "take care of me" thing on just a few people.  Really...that's how people will get pissed at me and pushed away.  

-If you know me even a little bit... now (after surgery) would be a good time to check in.  Legit... if we're not good friends now, we may end up being if we connect in the coming weeks.

- Movie suggestions.  Especially movies streaming on Netflix.  I have a feeling I'm going to be watching quite a few movies while I'm recovering.

- I'm also super open to ideas for exercise that won't hurt the healing process.  All I know of so far, is MAYBE being able to ride a stationary recumbent bike.  And maybe leg press.  No running, no lunges or squats... none of that.  I worry I'll go stir crazy, so if you can think of ways I can get out that physical release, let me know (....and for those of you who read that as sex, yes...I plan to have lots of it...so please give me other ideas...i.e. walking).

- I may need some help with errands.  I'm not exactly sure.  I don't know what driving is going to look like for me.  My plan is to be driving within a day or two of surgery... but doing things like carrying groceries in, that I might need help with.

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This list is getting long.  Honestly, I think what I most need, is to know that I'm not going to be completely alone.  I need people to check in, to love me, to care about me, to know that I'm gonna push back and say everything is okay--when it may or may not be.  I have a feeling the first week after surgery, people will look out for me and take care of me.  It's weeks 2-6 that I worry about.

So...I guess that's it.  I'm gonna need help, and it's gonna be hard for me to ask.  So I'm putting it out there on the internet...in hopes that someday, you (whoever you are) may check in some day.

PS Cash gifts are always a good "pick me up" after surgery too.  Just sayin!

1 comment:

Greg said...

Ya, you know I'm there, right? You were there for me, and you always are. I sent you a note on facebook.