gratitude

Turn it around

Since my dismal annual increase my thoughts have been in a fear-based loop. So I decided to change my current direction of thought. Its one of my coping skills – turn it around. It brings a shift in perspective. So I made a decision to…

… stop being driven by fear and bemoaning what I don’t have, and celebrate what I DO have. To turn it around. And I’m so grateful for the things I do have. I may not eat out at fancy restaurants. I may not fly to Mauritius on holiday, I may not have a wardrobe full of clothes and shoes and a fridge full of fancy foods. But hat I do have are luxuries a large population of South Africans don’t have…..

While most live in real poverty, I have a home with a beautiful view….

….I have running water

….and I have a flushing toilet

I have a washing machine and don’t have to do washing by hand…..

…..I have electricity which gives me lights, a TV to watch, a laptop to write and blog, a fridge with basic, healthy foods like vegetables…..

….. and I have a job and I earn a salary and, because I have a salary, I have a cell phone that can take these photos. Perspective – I am so grateful for all I have. Its more than most.

 

Sciatica, surgery, sanity

The sciatica pain became unbearable. It was driving me to the brink of insanity. Bearing in mind I only needed a nudge to get me there anyway. Even the prescription painkillers were no longer working. So after 5 months of unrelenting pain, I had to accept I had no control over this situation. I had done everything right – physio, chiro, pain management. But it kept getting worse. The combination of bipolar meds and pain meds were wreaking havoc with my moods, and the pain meds were beginning to eat into my stomach. So I had to pack my pride and self-sufficiency away and accept surgery as the only option.

All the meds I was taking for the pain

In hospital the MRI scans revealed a rapid and massive degeneration of the herniated disc, so under the knife I went. It came with no surprise that my surgery had complications because hey, I’m a complicated gal. The sciatic nerve plus another nerve were pinched and both were so compacted into the herniated disc that the neurosurgeon could not tell the nerves apart from the disc. He had to call in his boss to assist. Apparently a renown neurosurgeon in South Africa who was due to retire in one months time. I was told I was extremely fortunate to have been under his care because there was a real risk of me being left paralyzed. One false move and all of that. But after a 9 hour surgery that usually takes 2-4 hours, I emerged from the anesthetic intact.

Rehabilitation with a physio for 6 weeks and a hefty dose of grit and determination, had me on my feet, mobile and able to sit for extended periods. What a journey. I was off work for 7 weeks. So much for my new year’s resolution to have less absenteeism. But this was one resolution I was happy to break. Coming so close to not being able to walk again has changed my outlook on life. I have a greater determination to live. To enjoy and appreciate. To be grateful for all that I have. To have fun. I feel so far removed from the desperate depression I was in last year. I feel as if I’ve been given a second chance.

When the going gets tough, the support shows up

Yes, you! All my blogosphere friends. Once again!

true friends

You have comforted, encouraged and empowered at one of the worst points in my life. Like superhero’s you have been first on the scene at the first sign of trouble. You have been the strength to my kryptonite. You believe in me at a time when I am unable to believe in myself. To say thank you seems so inadequate. But, thank you. A big, big thank you. My mind is an electric mixing bowl, processing all your comments. Be assured of my replies.

Love y’all

thank you journey

 

For you

Thanks everyone for your support and encouragement. For the sound advice, the virtual hugs and the good vibes. You are my sole support and you all mean so much to me. Although we’ve never met in person, we share intimate details of ourselves to one another in good faith that it would be received with respect and good intent.

I have never felt as welcomed anywhere as I do here in the blogosphere. It’s the one place where I can let down my guard, be vulnerable and express myself without fear of prejudice or judgment. And its you, my support network and blogging friends that make that possible. I wanted you to know, you are appreciated, and without you, life would be so much more difficult.

Love y’all like crazy