Sunday, September 16, 2012

The weekend before surgery

I go in tomorrow for another procedure on my hand.

It has been on my mind since it was scheduled last month not just because they will be cutting into my hand (again), but because it means I will have to give up every bit of independence that I have struggled to recover..

I will not be able to workout
I will not be able to drive
I will not be able to type
I will not be able to shower by myself
I will not be able to dress myself
I will not be able hold a glass
I will not be able to feed myself
I will not be able to use  the bathroom by myself
I will not be able to...

What would you do if someone told you that you'd lose the ability to do any of these for
A month?
Three weeks?
Two weeks?
A single day?

I doubt I could even imagine it year ago, but I've already gone through the loss and recovery cycle a few times in the last 12 months so I decided to take advantage of my first two weeks without restrictions since April to try to do all the things I used to consider normal and also

- By a car (a Honda Fit) with big knobs and a tiny steering wheel.
- Officially restart my membership at the club (College of San Mateo) and
- Start working out again (stationary bike and pool swimming).

And most importantly set a goal that I could achieve in such a small window of time.
Luckily I did not have to look very hard because the Board Short Mile was conveniently set for Sept 15th.

Sure there were a few obstacles -
I had not been able to work out in months, had put on a bunch of weight, had not been in the pool since February or the ocean in over a year, but that just meant I had to keep my plan quiet in case I had to cut the swim short.

Luckily yesterdays conditions were perfect with +70 degree water, no wind or surf and a hot cloudless day.
Even with all that going for me it felt a lot more like a 5 mi swim than a 1 mi swim and I had to tune out that my escorts were struggling to go slow enough for me.

Thanks Joel, Mike and Jane, Ken and Kathleen and everyone that showed up to swim and help raise money for CAF.

with Joel

with Mike

Kathleen and my uncle Ken
With the ladies waiting for our board shorts
the ladies rockin' the shorts

I'd also like to congratulate George and Tom for putting together a great event; I will wear my board shorts with fond memories.


  1. I was soooooo surprised to see you there!!! (Did my jaw drop to the sand?) And you did such a great job swimming. Your form was awesome.
    I will be thinking of you when I attempt Santa Cruz later this month. With all complaint.
    Hope you have a rapid recovery and this next procedure gives you more!
    Also hope to swim with you again soon!!!

    1. Thanks Lynn. It was great seeing you too. Good luck on the swim.

  2. Congrats John!! You look great in your board shorts! :) Thrilled you were able to get back in the ocean. This swim will be fresh in your mind for a while, and will hopefully give you some strength to continue with the new procedure.

    70+ temp!! Rad.