Life is fragile in the recovery room

From my hospital bed I crawl onto the operating table. I am shaking. Not because of the cold air in the operating room but because I am scared.
“Are you nervous?” the nurse asks me. “I am scared,” I say. “Why?” This time it’s my anesthesiologist asking. The same one who helped with my PAO surgery. I remember his face. And the fact that he doesn’t seem to be an asshole, like they say most anesthesiologists are. “Last time was so horrible.”Ya, that was a major and very painful surgery!” We both agree.
They ask me to spread my arms to the side. I feel tied down like on a cross. When they try to put the IV in I look straight up to the ceiling, from where the huge lights will soon shine on my unconscious body. They use me as a pin cushion. “Your veins are tiny,” they say. I know. Nobody ever finds them on their own, they always need help from someone else. I could use some help here too. A kind word. Someone telling me everything is gonna be ok. Please. I fight back my tears. I could use some help too. But then they put the mask over my mouth, tell me to breathe, I try to keep my eyes open, I fail. Forced to surrender. Into nothing. Into where they cut me open. The scar I’ve been taking care of for the past 9 months. Back to the beginning. Continue reading

The Beauty in Brokenness

Did you ever feel broken?  

Do you know that frozen second of time where you can see a cup falling down, not yet having touched the floor? That second where you hold your breath, where time stands still and you know it’s too late to fight what is meant to be, that sacred in between of an old life that is about to fall apart and a new life in which the puzzle pieces are trying to find the place that has been theirs all along.

Maybe you cover your ears with your hands not to hear the cringing sound of breaking porcelain, crushing bones and shattering hearts. Maybe you close your eyes not to see the damage that is about to happen right in front of you. Or maybe you just stand there and that moment of all or nothing becomes your world. Maybe just for a while.

And then when the life of that one second comes to an end, you fall to your knees and you fight back your tears because you know that when you weep for too long it will be just too damn hard to find your sherds through the fog. And maybe you can’t find them all, maybe some remain hidden under the heaviest piece of furniture in the corner of your living room till you die and then your kids get rid of that old cupboard and just swipe away the long forgotten parts of your self with the rest of the dust. And  maybe that is just the way things should be. Continue reading

3 Weeks post-op: Broken and delicate and growing stronger

3 weeks. I can’t believe it’s 3 weeks already. And to be honest I don’t have much to tell.

I have been doing… nothing really. Apart from growing bones and letting my wounds heal.  But maybe that is not “nothing”.

2 weeks ago I came home to my parents place. I have a hospital bed in their living room, a recliner from my great aunt who died last September, as well as her wheelchair, and my grandma’s walker. I love it how my aunt seems to help me, reaching across the border of life and death.

My days are… boring really. I spend the mornings in the recliner, pushing the backward- and forward-button a thousand times as I can’t sit in the same position for more that 10 minutes. My butt hurts. Yes sitting on broken bones hurts. And it freaks me out thinking of what my pelvis looks like under my skin. A puzzle of fractures and screws trying to settle and grow back together. Around noon a nurse comes to give me my daily shot of blood thinner. It’s hard to find much fat on my stomac (see it’s not always good to be skinny) to put the needle in and so these shots aren’t the most pleasant to me. After lunch I move to my bed cause I can no longer sit. And then I nap, watch Netflix (I’m still too exhausted to start reading, even though a bunch of wonderful books is waiting for me), nap some more and ask Daniel to help me out of bed to get to the bathroom. O my days are so exciting :cP Continue reading

The PAO trail: Torture in order to heal

***PAO = Peri Acetabular Osteotomy***

PAO trail – day zero: December 4th 2016:

dsc_0423It’s 4 pm and I get into the car like a normal person for the last time. Today has been a day of “last times for a while”. I’m surprisingly calm when we take on the 2 hour drive to the hospital where my surgery will take place. We arrive shortly before 6pm, I get out and my stomac turns. The lady at the reception desk tells me where to go but I need to pee first. Another thing I won’t be doing on my own for a while. We arrive at the ortho unit, and it takes us a while till we find somebody who brings us to my room. I asked for a 2 person room, cause the one person rooms I just can’t afford. There’s no space left in a two person room, so they put me in a 3 person one, in the saddest place one can possible think of. Squeezed in between a closet and another sick person. No personal space what so ever, no window, absolute sadness. This must be the Harry Potter spot. Continue reading

PAO surgery – Call for support!

Dear All,
In a few days (December 5th, 8am European time to be exact, midnight in California ;c)) my first surgery to treat my hip dysplasia is coming up. The surgery that will be performed is called a Periacetabular Osteotomy aka a PAO.

Having hip dysplasia means the sockets of my hips are too shallow to properly cover the ball of my joint. This eventually results in early arthritis and pain 24/7. The pain has been debilitating in a way that not only I had to stop doing what I love on a regular basis, like hiking and doing sports, but also I can no longer sit or stand for more than 20 minutes, my range of motion is getting smaller, and over all the pain I’ve been living with the past 3 years is just exhausting for both my mind and my body.

hip-x-rayhip-xray-jpeg

Hip Dysplasia on both sides. The left one is worse though and is gonna be treated first.

Continue reading

As the world trembles

I haven’t written for a while. And even though I am really longing for it, the moment I sit myself down in front of a blank page, a feeling of immense tiredness overcomes me. I wanna play with words, but I am to tired to play. I wanna create beauty, but the grief is much more present (which can be beauty too, I am aware of that). So many things going on, so many roads to travel, so many books to read and write and yet it seems like I can’t find the starting line.

I want to plan hikes and I want to hike in the Sierra and in the desert and I want it to be summer already but there is no way to around winter, no way around surgery, the big dark monster slowly creeping up on me.

There are so many things I wanna do and start, yet this monster forces me to stop, to take a break in a phase of my life where I don’t really want to stand still, where I wanna create, bring my gift to the world and be of service. Of course I know this darkness is gonna inform me, is gonna be woven into my story, will become a part of my service. The beast will dance with the beauty and when I come out on the other side of the mountain I will carry a bit of gold in my small hands. But for now, to be honest, I am fucking scared. That’s how it is. Continue reading

Continue Smiling – A journey along the PCT

I am so proud of HQ who made a short movie about our journey along the Pacific Crest Trail.

As the title says, it’s about the ability to “continue smiling”, through pain, through ups and downs, through life. ‘Cause really when you look at life: It’s a miracle.

And so all I can do, is encourage you to keep smiling and following your heart. It’s the way to happiness! Be grateful, be who you truely are and share your gift with the world ’cause there is only one you and you got this one life to live to the fullest!!!

Here it is:

PS: While putting this video online yesterday I was in hospital and I was getting surgery scheduled. It’s gonna be hard but life always has its means of creating some sort of sense. I’ll walk my path… somehow… and next to the tears, which I am gonna cry for sure, I’ll do my best to continue smiling!!!

Love,

Cat