Sunday, May 26, 2013


The past three days have probably been the best days I've had in over 8 months. 

I have stood without feeling like my hips might break in half. I haven't felt that excruciating, gnawing, constant pain down the front of my thighs. I've walked -more slowly than I'd have liked, but without constant agony. 

My back hurts, and I have to stop and remind myself I had major spinal surgery just over 5 weeks ago. But this pain? Seems almost normal. Not to say it doesn't hurt, but it's telling me that the choice I made, the one I tried everything in my power to not have to make, the only choice I could make in the end, was without a doubt the right choice. It is, for the most part, bearable. 

Mother Nature has been flooding us with humidity, which is never a good thing for a bad back. In a cruel twist, she yanked our beautiful spring weather without warning and this morning brought cool, rainy, windy, stay under a cozy blanket and watch Lifetime movies (I can't believe I even wrote that - bed rest and recovery will weaken even the strongest constitution). 

I didn't give in to Mother Nature. Not today, not yesterday, or even the day before. I moved. I spent time with people I love. I did things I enjoy. I felt normal. 

While I wouldn't change a thing, and will continue to strive for these days that are helping make me feel like I'm finally returning to the land of the living, I'm acutely aware that although there is a need to challenge and push myself, I also need to acknowledge the delicate balance that comes with healing. I'm trying so hard to find where that balance falls on my healing journey, and am finding that it is far from an easy ctask. 

Sometimes a good thing really can be a little too much of a good thing. Sometimes we need our pain to nag us a little to remind us to slow down. Not to stop, but to be kind to ourselves. 

Tomorrow, I plan on listening to what my body is telling me: I need some rest. So the plan? Nothing at all. Tomorrow will be time for cozy blankets and family snuggles. For enjoying just being us, with nowhere we need to be or any particular obligations. Maybe an "outing" as I've come to call them, and maybe not leaving the house at all. 

But most importantly, listening. Because listening means more wonderful days ahead. More and more days of "normal."

As for the things that really helped make these past three days extra special? More on that soon. Maybe tomorrow? Then again, who knows. It will keep, as will my smile. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

June 27, 2011

May 2013

A little less than 2 years. 
A world of difference in a million ways. 
A mommy who wishes she could freeze time. 

Tap, tap, tap ... Is this thing on?

Hello? Anyone there? The silence is deafening. Hmmm, could that be because I started this blog over 5 years ago and my last post was on January 21, 2011?

Wow. I just realized that's exactly 2 years and 4 months ago. No wait. It's 3:04am, making it May 22, 2013. Insomnia is what finally brought me back. Sort of.

Here's some irony. In February of 2008, I underwent a spinal fusion at L4/L5. My daughter, The Mad Hatter, had just turned 3. With the surgery's long and brutal recovery, I knew I needed an outlet. Writing? Has always been my first love. Cathartic. Creative. The words just seem to flow out of me faster than I can type them. If you're new here or know me IRL, you will quickly realize that I write exactly as I talk. Which is a lot. But I'm always just trying to keep it real.

Anyways, where were we? Right, irony. So, recovering from major surgery, loving writing, needing an outlet, I thought to myself, maybe I can do this blogging thing - how hard can it be? So I thought about a name. I was a mom. I was learning to blog. There you go - Mommy Learns to Blog. Not too hard so far. As I started to write, I realized this was going to be far from hard. Instead, if I had to choose one word, I'd call it amazing. I found an entire world online that I would lose myself in for hours. Because, as bloggers know (or learn), when you have your own blog, it's pretty likely that you're going to seek out other blogs you enjoy reading. You will comment on blog posts that resonate with you. People will in turn read your blog and comment on what strikes a note with them (sometimes people find your blog in some very interesting ways, but that's an entirely different post). And before you know it you've got this huge group of friends in what you learn is called the Blogosphere. Or maybe all this time later that's not what we call it - leave me a note in the comments. Friends you've never met in real life, who live all over the world, but yet in many ways become closer than some of your real-life friends. And these friends? Are the only ones who really "get" this phenomenon. The ones (when you later get more into social media and create Facebook and Twitter accounts) you get to know inside and out, even though you've never met. The ones you've connected with in your own state, even city, and communicated with for years without ever having met in person. And then maybe you're at an end of soccer season party, look across the room, and realize "OMG! Is that Liza? And you run over to confirm that it IS indeed Liza, and you are so excited to hear what her voice sounds like, give her a huge hug, and finally "complete the circle." And if you're really lucky like me, all of a sudden the fact that you and Liza have many IRL friends in common will suddenly align with the universe, and you will start running into each other all over the place, and begin to take that friendship to the next level. Did I mention that I still find all of this amazing? Yes, amazing.

In fact, for the last 2 or 3 months I have been telling Liza that I was giving a lot of thought to dusting off this little space and starting up again (if it still existed, which I was happy to see it did) and she has been telling me to JUST. DO. IT. And I've had all these reasons for not doing it. EXCUSES. The design needs updating. I've switched to a MacBook Pro when I'm used to blogging from a PC. Blogging is so different now - there will be all these new things I need to figure out. My pictures are outdated. Is there some way to beam pics from my phone to my blog or do I actually have to connect the freakin' cord and work for it? Maybe I'll blog from my iPad. Or when I'm on the go from my iPhone. The bottom line is here it is 3:04am (now closer to 4:00am since I'm an editing freak), I am wide awake, tired of tossing and turning, and decided now was the time to get up and JUST. DO. IT. So Liza, thank you for telling me I could do this. I can honestly say that as I've been typing, I've been feeling this deep exhaling. Peacefulness. And some anger and disappointment with myself for allowing my excuses keep me starting sooner.

I just realized I still haven't hit the ironic part, so I'm gonna let you have it, and save the rest of the details for another post. I mean, if anyone is here reading (with any luck I'm still in someone's reader!), I don't want to put you to sleep. Although I do hope after I hit publish I might be able to put myself to sleep. I'll tell you this - on April 16th of this year (yep, just 5 weeks ago), I underwent another lumbar fusion - this time at the level above the last one, L3/L4. It's been a hell of a journey since December of last year, and I feel like my world (at least my blogging world) is finally coming full circle. It has taken another major surgery to bring me back to my passion for writing. For sharing. For connecting with old blogging friends (although thankfully for FB, I stay in touch with most of you pretty much on a daily basis). For the excitement of how much social media has grown over the past 5 years and all the people I've yet to meet. One of the most incredible things that has happened in RI over the last year is that a large and growing number of bloggers here in our humble little state have found each other and formed an organization called Rhody Bloggers. I've watched as the group has grown (since many of my still-blogging friends have been the ones to create it), and collectively they have done some truly amazing things. They have grown their own local community of incredibly intelligent, creative, really diverse women, and I truly hope as I recover, I will find a way to get involved and finally meet some of them in person.

One last thing ... I would be completely remiss if I didn't give a shoutout to my friend Jen from ! Jen and I met on Twitter YEARS ago when I posted a picture of some cute new style of Vera Bradley bag and she responded to my tweet, or something like that (I have a crazy memory. Can't tell you details of a movie I watched yesterday, but people and events - try me!). Yet another blogging/Facebooking/Twittering friend I've grown to love over the years. We joke about how we feel like we know SO much about each other's lives and kids because we are both those moms who are forever posting pics of our little divas with insane stories and antics to go along with them. Like me, Jen writes like she talks, and I love it. Anyways, the Saturday night before my surgery, my husband and I went out for dinner. I instantly recognized a guy at the table next to us (because he's a star on Jen's FB page too), looked next to him, and realized his wife Jen was sitting right there. Again, one of those total full circle moments I almost can't believe never happened sooner, but I hope now that I'm on the mend will happen on purpose in the near future!

I feel like this is a lot longer than I meant it to be, but it feels great. Cheesy as it sounds, it feels like I've come home. And believe me, like it or not (hope you like it), there's so much more swirling around in this crazy head of mine I cannot wait to share. I have no idea where this rekindled blog will take me, but I'm excited and hoping for some adventure!