Yoga, Physical Therapy, and Waxing the Legs

This has been a week of “firsts,” a week of doing things only for me, and a week of pain (some good and one not so good).  Read on…

A good friend of mine and I were catching up over breakfast the other day and she invited me to one of her yoga classes that she attends.  I am always skeptical of yoga classes because I’m as flexible as a two-by-four and  I was standing in the wrong line when God handed out coordination.  In addition, I have literally been pushed farther than I can go in a previous class that I attended years ago and I have been leery ever since.  She assured me this was a gentle class and it would be good for me.  I agreed to go and I have to say, it was a wonderful experience.  I don’t know a lot of the moves but I tried to do my best. At one point, I was so proud of myself when we had to stand on one leg like a flamingo and twist our arms around each other because I did not fall.  My supporting leg shook like crazy but I stayed upright.  For me, this was empowering because my balance has been thrown for a loop after chemo and neuropathy.  I woke up with sore muscles the next day but it was a ‘good’ pain.  I had done something beneficial to both my physical and mental health and I plan on going again next week.

I also started physical therapy today to hopefully deal with the balance issues that neuropathy has exacerbated.  Now keep in mind that I am not a coordinated person and I can trip over a piece of lint on a good day.  Throw in the neuropathy and the whole process involved in recovering from surgeries and chemo and I am a sight to see when I’m on the move.  I was ‘evaluated’ today and  I now have finger exercises, stability ball exercises, and balance exercises to work on.  I need to strengthen my abs (by-product of surgery and plain old fatigue from chemo) and my ankles.   Apparently my ankles have been overcompensating due to the weak core muscles and the neuropathy in the toes.  I have to retrain them to do what they are supposed to do.   This is what my physical therapist told me today.  “Seriously?” I asked.  She said, “seriously.”  “OK, so show me what to do.”  She did the exercises and then she had me do them.  Although these seem relatively easy when reading about them or watching someone else do them, some are quite challenging to me which is a bitter pill to swallow. Because my ankles have supported me through five marathons,  in my mind I felt that I shouldn’t have to start with the ‘baby’ stuff but goodness gracious, the ‘baby’ stuff can be difficult. And painful.   Again, this is a ‘good’ pain.  I plan on seeing progress each week and feeling more confident in my balance.

Lastly, my hair has really started to grow back.  I never lost all of the hair on my head but I lost a good chunk of it.  It has since started to fill in so now I don’t look like a person with really bad hair plugs anymore (the ‘do does look like something out of Star Trek but I’m ok with that).  Along with the growth on my head, my leg hair has also grown back (I never lost the arm hair so there’s no rhyme or reason to this hair loss thing).  Both the hair on the head and the leg hair are very soft.  Last night, I decided to try waxing the legs rather than shaving.  Having never done this before, I dutifully read the directions, warmed the wax, rolled the wax on, pressed the paper down, and let ‘er rip.  Um, no thank you.  What a miserable experience THAT was.  I shall hang onto my razor and contribute the blades to my local landfill as needed.

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