Thursday, May 26, 2011

I've been spending more time with friends!

Monday night was red wine, pasta with pesto and avocado, and talking about online dating and sex.

The next night they fed me Conecuh sausage with potatoes and cabbage. Wii tennis failure and drinks. Then we spent hours in the dark pool, talking, laughing, looking at the stars, and listening to the Beatles and Stevie Wonder. They want me to make a list of all the things I want to do this summer; all the things I've never done that are southern.

Last night I headed to another friend's for red wine and beef stroganoff.

This weekend I'm wearing a dress. Look at that, it's not even June and I'm going to have two things crossed off my list! Swimming and a dress in one week!

Here are some pictures of me with my little kitten niece. Excuse the demon eyes. She likes sleeping on my tits but, really, who doesn't?

I've been trying to figure out how to get better at self-care. And what's worked well for me in the past has been lists. This time around I came up with the idea of a whiteboard. I've listed what I need to do daily (brush teeth, wash face, read, write, clean, vitamins, medications, work on my to do list, etc.) and mark things off as completed. I don't cross everything off everyday but I'm getting better. Progress not perfection!

Today was my last session of physical therapy. My therapist is moving to Florida and, since I've been going for awhile, he wanted to know if I was comfortable continuing on my own or if I wanted to keep coming in. I decided to try on my own, knowing I still have a month or so where I can go in and it'll be covered. I'm worried I won't be able to motivate myself. But it has to happen eventually so now is as good a time as any to try.

Several people wanted to know what, exactly, I do in physical therapy. Which got me to thinking. A lot of folks with chronic pain/injuries can't afford/don't have the time/don't have the insurance coverage to go to physical therapy. So would it help anyone if I made (pitiful) drawings and actually wrote exactly what a session is like for me? I'm totally happy to do it if it would help any of you; just let me know!


  1. Southern things you must do (I'm from Kentucky, so these are southern lite)

    -Go to a shooting range and learn to shoot a gun (don't hunt though! Please!)

    -Go on a "float trip" - essentially you float down a river in a canoe to your campsite/car/etc while drinking and partying with your friends. I have yet to do this one but my boyfriend says it's a blast!

    -GO TO THE A FAIR, ESPECIALLY THE STATE FAIR. IT'S SO GOOD. I don't recommend eating any of the food (fried twinkies, fried snickers bars, fried butter) unless it's in the "farmer" section (Fresh milk from the cow, fresh corn on the cob, etc) but do pet a cow or two.

    -Ride a horse. Or go to a stable. Maybe this is a Kentucky thing, though.

    -Learn to work on cars. Learn to change your oil, or your tire, or install some goofy looking neon lights or a radio, say.

    -Get a pedicure/haircut/manicure and spend the entire time chatting it up with your cosmetologist like your two are best friends. Then see her/him again every week for the rest of your life (if you're my mom) or at least once a year or so (everyone else)

    -Go to a book club meeting - the birthplace of southern feminism!

    -Run into a total stranger and figure out an acquaintance you have in common within 2 or 3 tries. (Example: "where did you go to high school? do you know so and so? how about so and so? Ah! I know them too!") This will become habit every time you meet anyone new.

    -Say "you too" automatically whenever someone says "God Bless You" even if you do not believe in God.

    -Go to a tiny, family owned diner and eat Southern Home Cooked Food. Cheese grits! Hash! Sausages and Gravy! Country fried chicken! Fried okra! Collard greens! Ham and beans! Ham and other vegetables! Ham and every vegetable! Things with "mash" in the name!

    -Pick your own fruit. Blueberry season is in June, so start researching pick-your-own farms NOW.

    -Run around in the woods. Don't be alarmed by things like ticks or chiggers. This is more of a child thing but you have catching up to do, so...

    -Wear overalls. And then get them really dirty somehow ... roll around in some mud or paint something perhaps.

    -Build something. A birdhouse, say. And then make some bird seed so you have birds to look at out of your window all the time :)

    -Eat something made out of gooseberries

    -Swim in a lake! Possibly combining this one with "float trip" and "run around in the woods."

    -Gather all of your friends into the back of your pickup truck and drive around the neighborhood late at night knocking over port-o-potties and jumping on people's trampolines. This one might just be a southern teenage boys thing, but this was all the rage in high school according to my southern ex.

    -Go to a family gathering where all 50 people brought home cooked food and everyone is very southern and has southern accents, but don't talk about much beyond the weather and various family members. Forget everyone's name as soon as they tell you what it is because they are all similar.

    -Drink moonshine! Or at least jungle juice made with real Everclear. True jungle juice is everclear + lots of fruit let to sit for a few days until it tastes just like fruit juice. It's like Sangria, except for made in a bathtub (sometimes) with 10x the kick and none of the class.

    -Tiptoe through a cow field late at night on your way to the only thing that's open - a gas station, or steak n shake, or waffle house, say. Why? Just because it's an adventure.

    PLEASE do at least a few of them! :D

  2. Ideas for the list:

    Go down to the coast and see a shrimp boat. They are really cool looking. Get some very fresh seafood at a nice restaurant while there.

    Drive out to the boonies and find a real cajun/creole place to eat. Ask the waitress what you should try and take her suggestion. Do try crawdads and froglegs though, and softshell crabs if available.

    Find a voodoo shop and go shopping. Dont be afraid, as long as you respect their religion they will accept you. (I would love some High John the Conqueror root if you do this and it isnt expensive)

    If there is any way you can go crabbing and catch blue crab, its really fun.

    Drive out in the swamp/boonies and find a very old cemetery and take pictures. The older the better, I bet there are slave cemeteries around there from the 1700's and 1800's

    Take care of you and work on your list every day :)

  3. Oh yes, please do drawings and write down what you do in physical therapy! I would love some tips on dealing with pain...

  4. Love the photos.....cute kitten and cute YOU too.

  5. Hooray to lists! And I used to love my white board listing every day. It helped me through some tough stuff when I was out of work for almost two years. Don't be too hard on yourself and stick to what feels right.
    I think it'd be helpful to even just describe what physical therapy has been like for you. Love the pics! Too cute! <3

  6. Yes please...details of physical therapy would be greatly appreciated!

  7. Yes, I think it would be fab if you took the time to outline those things for people...and shared your experience of what it's like. I need to get motivated to start doing my own physical therapy again. Maybe I'll make a whiteboard :)

  8. I apologize, but I've been reading your journal since 2007 and I have to say a couple things:

    I know it's so hard to leave your hometown and be off, somewhere else, trying to find your way. It's super hard.

    However, how are you supporting yourself? I understand that it's really hard to say "I'm doing blank to be together." You need a job of some kind, at least see if you can find something.