Embracing My Struggles

2017 has been a challenging year, a year full of tests and learning. I’ve learned a lot about myself and others, some good, some bad.

 #1 IT’S JUST BUSINESS

When people say “it’s just business” they believe it. They make decisions that only benefit them, employees are just a tool to get from Point A to Point B. If people get hurt along the way, oh well. 

Lesson Learned: That’s crap! It’s the biggest load of crap I’ve ever heard. You don’t become successful in life or business without other people. This attitude will leave you alone, blaming other people for everything that ever went wrong. As stressful as it was to experience, I know my core values are just that, core values. People matter, they aren’t “just business”. I can never, no matter the salary, be part of that environment again. 

#2 GETTING BACK ON THE HORSE….OR ON THE PITCH

 During the second game of the season, the starting goalie broke his leg. Jake was to start at home the next game. He took a hit and ruptured his spleen. 

He was in the hospital for several days and ended up having a spleen embolization. Recovery was 6 weeks of little to no movement, including soccer. When he was cleared to go back out on the pitch, it was the last game of the season. 

Jake hinted he didn’t want to play, I think out of fear. Who wouldn’t be afraid? I was afraid. 

I told him feeling afraid was ok, but if he wasn’t playing he had to quit the team. With no medical reason keeping him out of practice or games, I knew as his mom, that as afraid as we both were, we can’t give into fear, we must face it. 

Lesson Learned: He went in the last 10 minutes of the game. The home crowd cheered, I cried and he did great! He overcame his fear that night. He’s my motivation for Lesson 3.

#3 STAPH INFECTED SHOULDER

At the end of May, I was lifting construction material at work and I heard a pop. I was sure I tore my Rotator Cuff.  I gave it a week and with no relief made an appointment to see my primary care doc. She referred me to an orthopedic office where I was scheduled to meet with their Physician’s Assistant. 

She was certain I only pulled my muscle and recommended a cortisone injection. Within hours after the injection, I began experiencing excruciating pain. I phoned the doctor’s office and left a message for the PA requesting a callback. I can’t recall who originally phoned me back but she suggested “I deal with it” over the weekend, the phone call didn’t end well. 

The PA called back the next day (probably because I used profanities and hung up the day before) to FINALLY offer an MRI. A week later, on a Saturday, I went for my MRI. I had a feeling the tech saw something because he told me he’d rush the results to the doctor. I later learned that my results were in my chart Saturday afternoon but I wasn’t called until Tuesday, after calling twice for the results. 

The MRI showed fluid in my shoulder, not good. I had the fluid aspirated from my shoulder the next day.  Again, I could tell the fellow performing the aspiration saw something he didn’t like when his tone of voice changed. 

I no sooner arrived home when the phone rang that I needed to head back to the hospital for emergency surgery to wash out my shoulder, I had a staph infection. A staph infection that developed from the cortisone shot.

I was in the hospital from Wed until Saturday. When discharged, I was sent home with a picc line in the “good arm” to administer IV antibiotics for 4 weeks. 

Surgery took place on 6/28 and I’m just now starting PT. I have to learn to use my right arm all over again. I have to work hard to restore range of motion and strength. 

Lesson(s) Learned: I found out my true friends are my family. They sat with me at the hospital, brought me food, helped me shower, took me to Target and loved on me. I don’t know what I would’ve done without them.

I’m so much stronger than I thought I was. The third week of recovery was the hardest, I literally willed myself out of what I think was turning into depression and took back my power. I knew I could sit in bed wallowing in misery and bitterness or I could fight back. 

EMBRACE YOUR STRUGGLES OR BE CONSUMED BY THEM

I haven't been myself the last several months. I've been disappointed, angry and sad. With the help of an amazing therapist and a few very close friends, I've managed to embrace the the struggles and start to heal. The alternative was to become consumed by disappointment, anger and depression. 

I've learned how important it is to stay true to yourself even when it's hard. Since this realization I made choices to step away from people and activities that aren't in line with my core values.

After standing at the edge of the cliff, life is too precious to be consumed by the bad stuff happening to us. It's so easy to be pulled in the direction of bitterness and resentment, that's not the person I ever want to be. So, here I am, starting over and looking for the good in all that's happened.