Friday, January 31, 2014

Getting back on the "horse"

It’s the first day of the Year of the Horse. Yesterday and last night were very noisy, with firecrackers going off all over town. They are illegal, but a blind eye is turned at Chinese New Year. It’s an appropriate theme for this next period of my life, during which I will need to get back on the “horse” after taking a fall.

My recovery continues. Every day I’ve been able to see progress in terms of mobility. Pain is still an issue, which is affecting my sleep. Each time I move or turn, I have to try and find a comfortable position for my arm. I feel very tired. The staples (33) have been removed and I’ve started physiotherapy with DBC (Documentation Based Care). Sam has been incredibly helpful, finding time in her day to ferry me around town to appointments. I’ve been thinking of friends who have had to learn to use parts of their body again after accidents: Martyn, Patrick, Gary, Sue.

I won’t be able to run again until I have more balance than I have currently. I’m hoping that will be in a month’s time, which would give me two months to train gently towards a half marathon at the start of May, followed a week later by the start of proper marathon training. Jackie (owner of Batik) and I have a date on Thursday mornings to walk along the waterfront, and Sam and I walk on Tuesdays.

Min is running well. He and I are entered for the Kuching Marathon, to be held on 17 August. Some others in our little group are also doing the full, and quite a few are doing the half. I’ve met with one of the organisers and will try to help them promote it. I’m really hoping Di and Frannie will come up from Albury for it.

Since I’ve been staying back at Batik I’ve started to organise film nights in the courtyard, which we're calling “Friday Night Flicks”. Our first one was the week before Chinese New Year. We showed “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel”. Next week is “Moonrise Kingdom”. It’s for guests and friends, and hopefully will become a regular Friday night event. I can still help organise it even when I’m not here, in terms of selecting films and writing the flyer copy, if there is interest in keeping it going.

A new friend made in the past couple of weeks is Fran, a well-travelled psychology professor/author from Massachusetts. When she visits New York City she stays just a couple of blocks from where I stay, so we’ll catch up there later in the year. We’ve had dinner at Bla Bla Bla and Mango Tree, and went with Jackie to see the Joaquin Phoenix/Amy Adams/Scarlett Johansson film “Her” at the new Cineplex at CityOne Mall last week.

There are always interesting people staying here. I enjoyed meeting a freelance travel writer and book author from New York, Bruce Northam, when Jackie asked a bunch of us out to dinner at a seafood restaurant over on the coast at Damai.

Caught up with Rita and Kah-Yee for a meal one evening. K-Y wants to write a book about her experiences of living with a very challenging physical disability. She’s a lovely woman, a qualified pharmacist. She wants to work in a community pharmacy in Melbourne. 

Made a return visit to Junk, my favourite restaurant in Kuching, with the Wees and Swee, Ivy and the boys, Nick and Kieren, for a pre-Chinese New Year dinner. Sara is back for a few days from her National Service camp and looking fabulous. Her new boyfriend is ridiculously good-looking.

Spent some time this morning with Emily’s family, who hosted an “at home” for the new year and invited me and Fran. Em’s dad has just had a knee replacement, and her mum had broken her wrist, so we three compared our scars. Traditionally, the children – Clarence, Emily, James and Darroll (a sister is away in the Genting Highlands) – honour their parents with tea and lucky red packets. As guests, Fran and I received red packets, too. I’ll take all the luck I can get, thank you!

1 comment:

  1. Robyn: the balance issue was the one that surprised me the most. My broken elbow was a nuisance to say the least - being my dominant arm - but it healed quickly and good enough motion came fairly soon - longer to get almost 100% and strong enough to do just about everything. I got better at using my left arm for things too. But the sense of balance even walking was missing - until I felt able to run I would walk 4-5 miles most days carrying a trekking pole - "just in case" I got wobbly. And when I started running I felt safer on grass than the road. In fact it took me months to feel well balanced running on the road. This may have been partly psychological as I broke my elbow while running - tripped and smacked it and that was planted in my brain. I am not saying you will take as long - but in part it is due to fear of falling and harming the injured body part and part to the unconscious guarding of the arm - that made me so wobbly. Well that is my theory.I gave up carrying the trekking pole while running on grass after about a week -put it to good use once to push away a dog that wanted to jump on me - but did not need it for balance. Carry a cane if need be until you feel ok without it or whatever works for you. This too will pass in time.