Saturday Gratitude List

I intend to skip some of my regular items in favor of one today, but I will mention some here.  I am, as always, grateful for my family, my friends, my medical team, my fellow employees and my boss at Rogers Ace Hardware.  I am grateful for the emerging medical technology which makes being diabetic  easier every day.  I am grateful for my blogs, and for all of the readers who stop in, or stay, to read my posts.

Today, I am particularly grateful for Chris and Carrie at Riverview Physical Therapy, in Bath, Maine.  Today marked my final session with these two — I am going to miss the sessions, conversations, and challenges they put in front of me.  We accomplished the tasks as referred by the doctor, and in the last few sessions, I finally, for the first time ever, got that serotonin buzz that comes from hard physical work.

The pedal exerciser sister J. bought me for Christmas is perfect for the kind of movement I most need.  My legs are, finally, not as swollen as they had been; and for a little bonus, the first five pounds melted away this week.  I know that isn’t real weight loss, because the sheer volume of food I ate in a day must have weighed five pounds (+).  Moderating my diet a little impacts me greatly.  I intend to stay with it.

I use the pedal exerciser while I watch Current TV in the morning, and I usually pedal ten minutes or more than I originally intended.  I’m not using much resistance at home, which Chris said was fine — for my needs I just need to keep moving.  I added the chair yoga exercises Carrie taught me, and a ten-minute or so casual walk around the building, (or through it, depending on the temp.)  I climb our 48 stairs to the third floor once daily — still struggling there, but those are different muscles and a different version of the Peripheral Artery disease.  I like varying my routine.  The only definite is 30 minutes on the pedaler every day.

I know I am making an enormously big deal out of this; those who have heard my exercise history understand, I think.  I never moved much more than was required from age 27 on, and prior to that year I was exercising often enough to count, but hardly any strain at all.  I remember walking the President’s Physical Fitness Challenge in the 7th grade, (1972) — I barely made a half-mile.  Not until 2010 did I finally reach that measure again.  My exercising has always been sporadic, and I must take care not to drop off this time, and lose all the ground I’ve gained.

So I am exceedingly grateful to my doctor, for referring me to this place, and to Chris and Carrie, who believed, when I first walked in all hunched over, that I would stand up straight again.  It will be a lifelong job, concentrating and remembering to keep my shoulders back and to face forward, not down.

What a remarkable couple of years these last two have been.  I broke through many of my emotional blocks, and I have an idea, at least, of how to continue that process.  My health overall is a little better, but wanting joy in my life has lifted me out of some awful doldrums.  And my doctors help me to stay here, and not let my health deteriorate. My heart actually sings with gratitude, and I know that I am astoundingly blessed.

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