Some Days Really Need Color . . . and Poetry
The Nitty-Gritty of It

Friday Mailbag

They say . . . it takes a village . . . 


Dear Kathy-the-Physical-Therapist,

Thank you for sticking with me a couple of weeks back.  You know.  When I was having a Bad Attitude.  That day when I kind of spoke harshly about your 1-10 pain scale?  And when I sort of screamed at you that, "no one else can independently move their big toe sideways and hold it there, so why should I???"  I'm sort of thinking that maybe you enjoyed getting that NMES zapper-thing out and hooking my foot up to those electrodes.  (I could see the evil glint in your eyes as you dialed up the shocks.) But, you know what?  IT WORKED!  That electro-shock gizmo woke up my lazy adductor hallucis muscle.  I can now move my big toe sideways and hold it there!  My arches are not collapsing.  My peroneal tendon is not doing all the heavy lifting anymore.  And it feels so much better.  Thank you.  Thank you.  Thank you.  (But I'm still not cooperating when it comes to the pain scale.)

Dear Yvonne-the-Sports-Medicine-Running-Specialist,

You sure know how to make a girl feel like a world-class athlete, setting me up on that treadmill and filming me from every angle while I was running and all.  I hope you'll forgive my outburst of laughter when you showed me the first playback on your computer.  Because . . . in super-duper slo-mo, I look like a giant, stomping off to destroy a village.  Fee-fie-foe-fum!  (Really, I couldn't help but giggle.)  I settled down right away, though, and paid attention as you analyzed every aspect of my running style.  I didn't even complain when you made a major adjustment to my "land pattern," and I think I picked up on it pretty quickly, don't you?  And I'll totally work on opening my shoulders a bit more and engaging my core.  I only whimpered when you strongly suggested that, while I was ready to begin running again, I should start  . . . with the Couch-to-5K program.  At the very beginning.  Really?  Are you sure?


Dear Kathy-my-yoga-instructor,

Thank you for taking the time to give me all the foot stretches and strengthening exercises over the last several weeks.  They really, really helped.   Mostly, though, thank you for suggesting YogaToes.  I love them!  I think YogaToes are the primary reason I now have the world's strongest adductor hallucis muscle.  (Well, that and the electro-shock therapy.)  I will never stop paying attention to my feet again!

Dear Tom,

You'll notice a big improvement in attitude when you get home from Mumbai in May!  My ankle is better.  I'm not whining and complaining and moping around anymore.  I can dance and stand up on the spin bikes and walk the dogs.  I don't have to ice my ankle constantly (although I must admit, it was nice to have that excuse to just sit and read or knit . . . ).  And yesterday, I started the Couch-to-5K program again.  (Yeah.  I know.  They're making me.)  But I feel like myself again.

Dear Self,

Get over it.  Couch-to-5K is a great place to start again!  You're recovering from an injury.  And you're learning a whole new way to run.  Yeah.  It's a step backward.  But it's a HUGE step ahead of where you were yesterday.  (Which was just on the couch . . . )


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"Well begun is half done" has been attributed to everyone from Aristotle to Mary Poppins, but my wise grandmother told me this often, and I've found it to be true. You're not being punished or enduring a setback with Couch-to-5K; you're off to a new, pain-free beginning that will carry you much farther forward1


Congratulations on being back on your feet! Though the sitting can be nice can't it? I'd whine about starting over too, is for the best!


Oh, that's fantastic!! Great news (for your therapists, instructors, and husband too)! You'll be back up to 5K in no time!!

Happy Weekend!


As you know, I would KILL to be doing C25K. Way to go with rehabbing your bad self! I'm so happy for you.


You have been on a journey of recovery and, even though you had a lot of help, it is your attitude and determination, your desire to do it the right way, a way that will carry you on pain free for the rest of your life, that has made it happen


Baby steps, Kym, and yes C25K is a great way to go as beginner-ish as it may feel. Kudos on the hard work of rehabbing both of your feet! So very happy for you.


So glad to hear that you're feeling better.
I feel your pain, Kym.
I have forefoot varus and need to compensate with custom made orthotics which are really hard to use with cute sandals. :-(
I 'm trying out Aetrex sandals for the first time. Do you have a favorite brand?


So glad you're getting better. I too hate the 1 to 10 pain scale. It's so useless. I'm required to list it or my insurance won't pay. I've tried to develop a translation of it in my head. 1 is very minor short lived pain. 10 you pass out due to the pain and so forth. I still hate it, but what can you do. I've been told by a therapist that they pay more attention to how your numbers change or don't over time rather than the number. Good luck with your running.


These Friday letters always crack me up! It's great that your feet snd ankle are feeling so much better. I am still totally with you on the 1-10 pain scale. It's the stupidest concept ever!

The poem in your last post (who's behind inmtheir reading?) is wonderful. You have inspired me to read more poetry.

Happy weekend!


Hallelujah!!! I think your story teaches us a good lesson about injuries at this time of life - we need to take them seriously and be open to lifelong changes to prevent them from recurring. Yay You!

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