Chris took that crazy picture of me two months after the last stroke. Some people might be embarrassed have it out there, but I’m not. It marked the first time I was able to put all my weight on my left leg, even though I hit the pavement right after. Plus I love that Frankie is in it, always standing guard.

Little things like opening a bottle of water or getting the fitted sheets around the corners of the bed have gotten easier for me. Small victories. Ones I still shake my head at if I stop and think about them, which I try not to do too much.

Last week I decided to nut up and try Pilates. I think most of the people who read here (all 20 of you) know I used to love Pilates and practice regularly. Welp, here is a summary of how it went down:

  • What’s a corkscrew again?
  • Wait, I used to be able to do a corkscrew.
  • Flailing
  • 5 minute breaks every 5 minutes.
  • Where are my abdominal walls?
  • What are abdominal walls?
  • Do I still have abdominal walls?
  • You zip up from the belly button to the spine, lady. Oh, you already are.

The real kicker came when I tried to put my weight on my right arm and thread the needle. All that happened was a bunch of shaking and me collapsing on the mat. Humility 1, Carrie 0.

When it was over I was dripping in sweat from beginner moves. Actually, I was dripping in sweat after 3 minutes and just maintained a steady stream throughout. My legs felt like rubber. I was bewildered. Beginner moves weren’t a struggle for me even when I WAS a beginner.

Even though it’s hard for me to say these things out loud, I know it’s good (and hopefully helps someone else out there, too). Recovery is nothing to be ashamed of. At times like these Pilates ones, I wish I would have documented more last time around because, for some reason, I feel like the recovery process is dragging on forever. A few days ago I was really beating myself up, thinking about how well I was doing just this past summer.

Then I got out the calendar and realized it was 19 months after my first stroke.

Humility 2, Carrie 0.

Bad things happen fast and we have to live through them slow.

::Bright side: I did a modified corkscrew today!::