About Me

Candlerun, htabby, or just plain old Heidi as I can go by either one :0)

This blog is about my daily rants and success along my track of getting back to a healthy weight and accomplishing my running goals. I have experienced many trials and tribulations in life, but I am a stubborn and determined lady that once I have a goal in mind... I am determined to get there. I am a back of the packer in terms of speed and just happy that I am able to run at all. :)

I have lived in a few places in Canada and have made it back to Saskatoon, SK, again. I have many animals and thus the going joke amongst our family and friends is that we have a zoo - therefore the title of this blog. I generally have many things to say and my posts can range from everything from running, family, animals, weight loss, or what ever strikes my fancy.

Now for a bit of history...

Ok... you are going to have to bear with me here as I go through all this. It hasn't been an easy life and I have had my share of the hospitals. lol Right now I will share the stuff that I share with people about me. I have had the usual kid bumps, bruises, and have grabbed the odd curling iron or placed my hand on the hot stove as a kid, but the rest have made me who I am today.

I have had a bit of a rough life to start. Born with huge dumbo ears and had the 'old way' of correction using the pins. I basically had a football helmet of bandages on my head and lost my balance all the time - something to do with the surgery affecting my inner ear? So that was fun. At the age of two and just getting my bearings to begin with, not something that a kid looks forward to. Things did work out in the end though. :)

At the age of 3, I tripped over a cord attached to a kettle and burned my body from the neck down all over my arms and torso, both front and back. A lot of complications arouse and I was in the hospital for six months dealing with all kinds of stuff including pneumonia and physical therapy. I was not eligible for skin grafting as I was too skinny and under weight. It has taken me till after high school to wear a tank top as I was too self-conscious of my scars. I do not have much left except one that goes from over one shoulder, down my arm a bit, and across my chest.

As the years progressed, I started to have seizures that my mom noticed. She did take me to the doc and they did not really look into it far. It was not until things got bad enough at school that one teacher finally got involved - it was then that I was diagnosed with juvenile epilepsy. I would either have the grande mals or the petite sensory ones, as it depended on the circumstance I was in. I had to actually laugh at this because I was always sent to the principal's office from a different teacher because she thought I was being a smart ass and not paying attention to her. She was kinda silent too me after the verdict came in. :) So, the pills they had me on I swear could knock out a horse. It is nothing to actually have to sit in a chair to take a pill because I would be a walking zombe with them and out of it. Physical exercise was a no go because I just had such a hard time with it. I am lucky today that I have grown out of this but it will always be a constant worry to me if they start to occur again.

Now, if I didn't think I had it bad already... on July 7th, 1992, the world for me came to a halt.

I was in a serious car accident that took them almost an hour to get me out of the car. I was hit by a truck doing about 80 kms/hr and pushed in to another truck. I was the driver and was embedded under the steering column and the clutch went in to my right foot. They could not use the jaws of life because it would have caused more damage to me so they had to take the car apart from the back, across the top, to the front and get to me that way. I was taken to one hospital and stabilized till I was ready to transport to another city. The family was called in as they did not expect me to make it.

It was touch and go for a while there as I coded a few times and they had to cut the surgery short because I was not doing too well. In the end I ended up breaking numerous ribs, right humerous, shattering my left femur (they had to put a rod in), hip, both scapulas, shoulder bones that I can not remember the names of :), fractured left skull by my ear (head injury), completely severed radial right nerve by the broken humerous, severe contusions to both my lungs, and spleen (they were going to remove this), damaged the right ventricle of my heart, and fractured my neck. Yep, you read it right... my neck. There were some other things but, these were the main ones that I can remember.

I had no feeling from my neck down for a while and until the swelling went down, they were unsure of the full extent of it. Luckily, things worked out well that I did not have as much damage as they thought I may have and I did end up getting feeling back. Well... that is except for my arm... the whole top of my arm that is connected to the radial nerve that was severed that does things like being able to lift your fingers or open your hand.

So, throughout my almost couple months stay in the hospital, I was told many things. First of all I was told I would not be able to walk again, and then I could walk - but would always need a cane... as I would always have a severe limp. I was told I would never be able to run, have kids, and would never have the full use of my arm and hand. Now each time I would have a success, they would always shoot me down with another one of there downer comments. I will never forget the first day that they put me in a wheel chair... it took almost five people to put me in because everywhere they touched, I was broken. lol As time moved on and through physical therapy, I was shown how to get in myself with help and told myself I can't live like this. I won't accept it!

The last bit I was in there, I insisted that I needed to live as normally as I could with what I had. My family and boyfriend at the time came in every morning to get me dressed, do my hair and help feed me. I HATED my hospital room and any chance I could get I would sneak around in my wheel chair using my right toes and my left hand to move the chair. I was finally transported back to my home because the nurses said I was too stubborn and refused all their help as I insisted I did everything my way and that as long as I continued my physical and occupational therapy, I could go... with home care visiting me everyday of course.

It took over a year of physical therapy and a couple of years of occupational therapy to see remarkable improvement. Yes, I did walk again (obviously) as I graduated from the chair, to a modified walker (because of the limited use of my arm/hand) to a cane, to walking and now running. The limp was hard to get rid of but I found the more active I became the better things went. To this day, if I do not stay active, my limp may show up. I still have a hard time sitting in some chairs for a length of time because it hurts too much. Sometimes I would have a hard time just sitting in a university class. Going to watch a movie at a theatre was torture. Thank god for when the Galaxy Cinema came - much better. :)

Now the arm took quite a long time. Around the 1.5 year mark, they sent me for a test to see if any nerve signals were coming to my hand yet. If they did not see one, they were going to put a fake part in to attach it together again. Thank goodness a signal finally showed up! The nerve naturally healed itself. :D

A few years later, when I could finally be like almost nothing happened, I met a man, got married 6 months later, and he insisted on kids. Now I tried to tell him what had happened but he did not believe me. I told him that I was advised that I would not be able to carry a child safely full term. He won. He soon learned that I really couldn't. I spent one month in the hospital before my son was born, and he was born one month early. There were complications and my heart really could not handle everything. They were close to losing us both in the delivery room.

Today my son has Asperger's, ADHD, Tourette's and Asthma. Whether or not these are related to the pregnancy or not, I don't know. But I love him even more for them. I will never be able to carry children again as the doctor's made sure of this a couple of yrs ago. It just is not safe. Oh ya, and that man is no longer my husband. ;) I have had problems with my blood pressure and wt and have managed to get myself off of meds and down in wt to make things better. My arm/hand will never be 100% like it used to be as I still have some weird feelings and tingles on the top, but you'll never know how proud I was when I could finally give a thumbs up to my doc! I also have some memory problems and have lost part of my life memories due to head injury form the accident. My neck gives me grief now and again too.

Now, the question is... why do I run? Because I can! I was told I would never be able to do anything that the doctor said. Grant it he was right in some things, but I just knew that I could do more. I am a very stubborn person that loves and searches for new challenges all the time. It is by this stubbornness and all the prayers to god that family and friends made that I am here today. It was on my persistence and love on continuing on going to the gym how ever I could and did what I could. I am not going to give up. If I do... I know I will end up like the last words that the doctor had told me - you will most probably using a cane by the mid 30's and in a chair in the 40's. I need to continue to stay active to keep my mobility or I seize up. I need to stay active to keep my heart in the best shape it can. I need to stay active so I can be there for my son and husband. I need to stay active for me.

So there you go, a kind of run down on my life and why I run. Every time I go out I think about what I have accomplished in my life and what I have overcome. I know if life was different and I was still in a chair, I still would have the determination to get out there and do what I could. I also know that if I did not experience all the trials that my life has given me, I may not have been as strong. I used these to fuel myself to move on and get past many obstacles that were there.

I am not the fastest runner out there by any means, but I am out there doing what I can. So when I get to that 'wall' in running, I think to myself... this is just a walk in the park.