Monday, April 11, 2011

Buff arms and disproportionate legs

Three girls in front of us while watching a free Shakespeare play in the park, Philadelphia

For the longest time I thought I was a patient person.  It's one of those things you think but never say.  Worst way to make friends or get people to like you is to list all your best attributes while making the other person feel like crap.  Happens a lot.. But I digress ~ 
It's been week 5 on crutches and I've learned quite a lot on crutches apart from patience which (surprise!) I do not have very much of.  First off, you get to appreciate doing really simple things. Case in point: Morning coffee.  I'm only really awake once I've had my cup of joe (if you talk to me before this, most likely, i will not remember 90% of what you just said to me although I'm nodding periodically). That said, as I made my cup of coffee in the coffee room, I was left standing there with my hot cup and crutches unable to bring my drink back to my desk because I realize I don't have three arms (darn it!).  So I ended up just shouting all of my coworkers names out the hallway and then drinking that cup all in the coffee room.  Sad...but now that I have a cupholder attached to my crutches. Problem solved. :) 
There have been situations where there really is no solution except just to ask a second person to help me out.  Some people think I'm high maintenance.. And I'm sure I can be but jeez people, disabled people have it tough! Give them a break.  Open the door for them.  Help them when they drop something.  Give them that seat on the train.  It makes a difference. 
I met a woman with MS which spread to her legs.  (Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease that affects the brain and spinal cord (central nervous system)).  She had been walking on two canes for 6 years and we befriended each other as we took the elevator from the train station every morning. It's amazing how people like that commute each day and still have the ability to find pity on someone like me.  I really began to appreciate the strength in people like that.  
On the other hand, you begin to hear the stories of other people's broken bone stories.  It usually starts something like this: "I remember once my brother's coworker's daughter had a fracture in her wrist..."  Then some monologue.  Don't get me wrong, I've gotten some really good advice but let's just say, they've been from like two people out of the many in our department.   I'm at the period now where I'm a  bit exhausted about talking about my leg.  I have 5 different stories about how I broke my ankle (one of them involves a gang fight in a dark alley) just to keep it fun.  I realized that a little bit of humor makes everything a little better.  As well as strong pain meds and reruns of glee... 
I'm learning and for that, I can truly say what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

A broken ankle and a fresh perspective


To say March was an adventurous month would be an understatement.  It was...a roller coaster. One with a lot of loops and dips.  But I still owe an apology for being a complete slacker even before this month with my blog.  I haven't kept my promise but I'm back and I will do my best!

Lets press the rewind button:  Last Tuesday morning I went for a run outside before work as a part of my healthy eating/living initiative.  This is composed of no coffee until Easter, veggies and fruits each day and morning runs.  Now the first one would have been challenging enough but I get way too overambitious sometimes.  So here I go to a state park nearby around 7am with my afro bed hair, black sweats and the t-shirt I slept in.  Two minutes into the course, I slip on black ice and land on my left ankle in a completely twisted way.  Pain. Pain. And more pain until I get to the hospital in an ambulance. The snobby nurse won't give me my pain meds for a good 3 hours so I feel like I'm dying slowly...  I finally get my morphine and find out the next day I will need surgery because I've skillfully managed to break all three bones in my ankle.  It hurt. It sucked. It put everything on my life on hold including work which I kept thinking back to. 

Now that the surgery is done and I spent this entire week on heavy pain meds, poor sleep, nausea and lots of crying.  It's been challenging and humbling.  I am no superwoman nor do I feel the need to be.  I guess somehow I always felt the need to be. Why is that?  I don't know.  Pride probably.  But I have no cape when I can't even get my pants on in the morning, or going up steps takes three times as long, or having to ask people for help with almost everything.  I have no cape.  And I never did.  I just thought I did.  

So with gentle reminders, I'm being shown that life is quite unpredictable.  I'm not in control of the future.  I'm only in control of what I've been given today.  This day.  And with what I have, I am grateful.  People have been incredibly supportive during this tough time and God has been gracious.  I'm not superwoman but I certainly feel very free at the moment..
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. - Matthew 6:34

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Don't tell me, show me.

The Smiling Face at the Johnson Museum, Cornell University, Ithaca
Don't be all talk.  Walk the talk.  
Fitting saying since I missed posting yesterday (it was inevitable).... But the point of this post is not just that.  Lately I find it extremely disheartening and scary to find people who talk about change but don't put it to action.  In terms of faith, it really scares me to think that people inside the church will be the people most blind to the reality of their state.  Dad and I were talking about Joel Olsteen (the health-and-wealth preacher from Texas) and in an effort to capture the attention of his audience, he (as well as countless of other pastors) have talked about the good side of the gospel.  Yes God blesses us.  And yes, relationships and serving others are quite important.  But at the central of the gospel, we see how God's love for the undeserving has transformed our own notion of any sort of good deeds or moral standards.  The talk is no longer the moral standard when Jesus is in the picture because the gospel is too radical for that to be the main subject.  The main subject is God loved and chose to save us from our hopeless state of sin.

To have a truly meaningful life means to give everything up. Soul food for thought this week...

Monday, January 24, 2011


Sculpture at the Johnson Museum - Cornell University, Ithaca

He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.  Ecclesiastes 3:10-12
Crying is therapeutic and makes you feel human.  Today I got scared of waiting on med schools - anxiety kicked in, emotions choked me.  Maybe it was the long day at work, the readiness to leave the 9 to 5 work schedule, the longing to finally be where I want to be.  Waiting is hard and trusting is harder.


Sunday, January 23, 2011

Game over: Packers versus Steelers

Penny jar on my desk, Home

Had a perfect sunday composed of being reminded of reality after listening to Pastor Dwight, catching up with friends and window shopping with my sister as it is her last weekend before finishing her second college year.  My sister is really awesome btw.  I'm gonna miss her.  But now I can start going to the gym since I won't be tempted to be eating with her in front of the tube when I come home from work. I downgraded recently to a cheaper gym (24 hours!).  Should I feel safe if the first thing they show are the "emergency" buttons just in case any criminals come into the gym?  Not that I live in the projects or anything but do you really want to tell your members "don't let strange men in. carry your cellphone with you at the treadmill. carry this with you if you can't reach an emergency button." ?

Btw, Steelers are killing the Jets right now (23-0).  Taylor just tackled the QB and they got the fumble!! Oh my OH MY.  And I have to say.... GO PACKERS!!!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Hopeless romantic

Frozen winter stalks, Home
Watched the 1989 classic movie, Say Anything, and fell in love with the young John Cusack again.  Not to be a huge cheeseball but there's something about the famous boombox scene that gets to me.  Maybe, just maybe, I'm a hopeless romantic under the "I don't care" facade.  There's something about Lloyd Dobler's irresistible character, that long tacky trench coat and lovesick expression that keeps that scene replaying over and over even after 20 years. Sigh.

On another note, looks like I'm going to Latin America this summer - destination soon to be known !!!  Literally the email went like this: "Based on your language skills, we have no reservations offering an ambassadorship in Latin America."  Are you kidding me??

Friday, January 21, 2011

Sword to heart

Sky view, White Clay Creek State Park DE
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this; to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted from the world. - James 1:27 -

To be part of the world but not polluted by it.  How does that look like?  Soul food from bible study today...