10 flights of stairs

June 7, 2009

Yesterday I went to see a counselor, one who speaks English & isn’t too far away. 

I don’t actually know if I need a counselor, but I don’t want to be completely isolated in dealing with this disease and it’s consequences, and I think it’s important to have someone to listen to me without having to worry about taking care of them emotionally at the same time (unlike discussions with friends, family, my husband). Finding someone who speaks English was a key factor, because while I am completely fluent in French, I don’t express myself the same way, and I’ve already seen that I am less real and raw when I talk in French (I saw a counselor in French last year after the ectopic pregnancy mess).

These past weeks I’ve been back in the gym, something that started actually before the cancer horror, probably because I’ve lost enough weight to be thinking about exercise again. I was freaked out by how out of shape I was, how high my heartrate was on the elliptical machine at low levels. One of the greatest things about starting exercise when we are really out of shape is to see how fast you can see real progress. Yesterday I did a really intense hour on the elliptical and was really please to be up several levels on the machine and with a heart rate that was pushing it but much improved in only a few sessions. I was also able to go a full 60 minutes which would have been near impossible a few weeks ago. It’s also a BIG OUTLET for the stress, no doubt about it.

So yesterday I arrived for my appointment curious as to whether I would think this counselor worth anything. I had gone to the gym in the morning, and gotten off the metro stop so full of energy that I took the stairs instead of the escalator, something I admit to not having done in almost a year.

As I arrived at the counselor’s buidling, she informed me on the intercom that the elevator was broken and that she was on the 10th floor. Great.

Here in France that means 10 full flights of stairs, not even just 9 that you’d have in the US where the ground floor counts as 1 — here ground floor is zero.

As I started up the flights I realized it wasn’t a bad analogy to what I’m going through. Trudging on to the next step on and on.

  • It hurts (my thighs, the surgeries & procedures).
  • It’s ugly (the stairway & the situation).
  • It’s hard.
  • It’s not fair.
  • It’s a lot of work to get to a step that I don’t know how useful it will be (the first visit to this counselor, and each procedure and doctors visit I am making).
  • I have to be strong.
  • I have to keep going.
  • I have to just accept it and get through it.

I weighed in for the week today because tomorrow I am on the road already.  Down one pound again for the week, bringing me to -15 now. 

Thank you for your comments.  I think I am going to keep this blog going, as the diet and exercise part of our daily lives, and I like it here.  I also have always put more than just a food diary into this blog, because the truth is we are all people with complex lives and plenty of other things going besides our weight.  It might the the common thread we have here on 3FC but our other common thread is that our weight is only a small aspect of ourselves.   

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