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Wednesday, 5 March 2014

You've Got My Back

The last few days have been a little up and down physically and emotionally. I’ve been very teary on a number of occasions; my Mum tells me that anesthetic can have that effect post surgery. I’m sure that is part of it, along with feeling very tired and not getting a great deal of decent sleep, but I think the over riding common denominator is when my thoughts turn towards the World Cup starting in 88 days.

I’ve had so many amazing messages of support over the last few days. Some have been from complete strangers. Others have been from those who often tweet regular encouragement during tournaments for club and country. The majority though have come from current and ex-teammates, including the best piece of advice from someone who was unfairly hampered by injury throughout her career. She simply said “One day, one session at a time”. It sounds like such a simple concept but it’s so hard to do, especially I find right at the start when you have a lot of time to sit and think. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked at my calendar and counted the number of weeks it is until the World Cup and compared this to my recovery time from last year. I think it’s understandable, yet know it’s completely unhelpful. I know I can only do what I can do, obviously I will be pushing it to the limits but my mantra for the foreseeable future will be ‘one day at a time’.

Physically I don’t feel too bad, my back feels stiff and it’s frustrating not being able to stretch it out but the pain is manageable. The numbness in my right leg and foot is constantly at the back of my mind. My calf was twitching like crazy last night, which I was desperately convincing myself was a good sign. I’ve been given a few mobility and core exercises from the hospital physio and other than going for short walks, there’s little else I can do.

My overriding comfort throughout the good and the bad over the last week has been the tremendous amount of support. I know I can’t get through this by myself and I can’t thank everyone enough for the emails, texts, tweets, Facebook messages and comments on my blog. They all help, every single one of them. In the email I sent to the current GB squad explaining my impending operation, I used this quote…

“When the mind says give up, hope whispers one more try.” Anonymous

I know this is going to be a battle, but where hope remains, my heart will never give up.


In the meantime I’m loving Ellen DeGeneres’ app. Heads Up! It’s providing much hilarity at times when it’s very much needed. Laughter, after all, is the best medicine.



Clearly my Dad has not seen Star Wars!

15 comments:

  1. ..your blog while cathartic for you is also helping so many others that you cannot possibly imagine.. as you said you have amazing achievements already fulfilled in your life but I like the following 'You have to fight through some bad days to earn more of the best days of your life' .. give yourself a break and one day at a time .. Netflix can also be hugely diverting .. :0) @amandariagain

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    1. Thanks for your comment. I've not given Netflix a go yet but I should probably just get on with my psychology assignments instead!

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  2. LOL! Your dad's Darth Vader was more like Obiwan Kenobi scaring off the sand people!

    Best of luck with the recovery Helen.

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  3. Hi Helen,
    So sorry to hear that you have got to go through all of this again.
    Good luck for a speedy recovery and fingers crossed that you can get back playing ASAP.
    You are one tough lady, so I know you will do it.
    Best wishes, Paul x

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    1. Thanks Paul, I'll be giving it everything.

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  4. Love the video, when is the next edition? I always feel like the effects of post op anesthectics are like flu, you feel like death warmed up for days/a week then start to feel better, start doing things & are as limp as lettuce. It seems to last weeks too, but it does go. Thought you might like to listen to my good friend & fellow Olympian Rhys Williams on http://www.mixcloud.com/CatTPeters/stories-behind-the-song-with-rhys-williams/. He had 2 years out with injury & got back to top form & you will too, keep going :0).

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    1. Thanks Lynne, starting to feel more normal everyday now which is good.

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  5. Helen.. everyone is behind you and supporting you.. 88 days is still a time away and i know that from your amazing recovery.. determination and dedication from the previous op.. you can do this!!! Use your time wisely.. video analysis.. working out rehab progs.. though i am sure this already a work in progress.. you will be wearing that no8 shirt in no time at all.. enjoying the blog too.. ;-)

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  6. ....so, hopefully my post-op tale may entertain you for a short while - apparently all went well in theatre but in the recovery room the nerve block they had put in was working but working too well. As opposed to just blocking my shoulder/arm it decided to have an unscheduled trip round the rest of the right hand side of my body! A few sips of tea and cue uncontrolled wretching (apols for graphic language but it helps to set the scene!) followed by inability to speak and right eye taking on the doleful expression of a lazy bloodhound. Mild consternation from the staff led to a diagnosis that some of the block had "travelled" into a main nerve which caused temporary blocking of my right side, very weird, even to the point that one side of my nose was completely numb whilst the other side was normal! An unscheduled trip to the ward followed with instructions of "nil by mouth" until the effect wore off. 6 am this morning was allowed my first drink - oh joy! Anyway, all fine now and on day one of back to fitness. Keep strong!

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    1. Wow! You win the post op. story hands down and made me laugh a lot! Glad it's all ok now though and hope you also recover quickly.

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    2. So, last night's comedy routine/attempt to turn a drama into a crisis was - first shower post-op (hurrah), attempting to rinse hair whilst keeping wounds dry, managed to fill both ears with water which I still haven't got out yet #likelivinginseaworld...

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  7. i like you blog !! I fans England ....NEVER GIVE UP!!! and the video....hahahahahaha Darth Vader? :-/ hehe ..Soon Star Wars episode please!!!funny...kisses from Argentina! Nataly

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