July 16, 2020

Oh The Questions I Get Asked…Part I

I get some pretty strange questions all the time and some pretty personal ones too! I am getting use to my life being an open book, whether I am having a bad day, just hit one of my goals, or just an average run of mill day…I am letting people see that I am only human, just like everyone else. I don’t think I am better than anyone, nor do I think that I am a failure.

After all, failure only occurs when you stop trying! I am going to list some questions I have been asked and I am also going to respond to them! I never stop trying, I might tweak it to make it fit better for me, or I might change direction or it might end up turning out completely different than what I pictured, but I never stop trying.

I am going to list some questions I have been asked and I am also going to respond to them!


Why are you squatting that way?

You might be wondering what my squats look like now! I definitely squat different than a person who has had no back or hip surgeries or injuries. Can I squat the same way that an Olympic lifter does, yes I can. But in order for me to do repetitive sets, at a solid weight, I have to tweak it. Sometimes my feet are farther out in front of my stance and I squat basically sticking my butt out and chest up. Another way is using plates under my heels. This way takes some pressure off, which helps me dramatically! I also never just push out squats as fast as I can; I use steady consistency throughout the entire movement, sometimes even holding the squat in the down position for a 3-5 count.  If I want to do explosive squats, I never do them with weight; I do air squats, which is still a good training for my glutes, hamstrings and quads. These even work my core.

Why don’t you ever tell me to do sit-ups?

It’s not that I don’t like them; there are just so many other core strengthening techniques that don’t put as much pressure on my lower spine and yield better results (I think).

You have chronic pain? But you don’t look in pain?

This one almost always gets me to laugh. My response, please explain to me exactly what pain looks like. I have learned to mask my pain with a smile. It helps me get through it. I don’t have time to be bed ridden, after all I escaped death 3 times…I WANT TO LIVE MY LIFE…even in chronic pain!

How are you handicapped…you are so young? (Or I get the disgusted look and eye roll)

Yes, I am young, but I have had a handicap parking permit on and off since I have been 18. I have lived MANY years on a walker, trust me no 18 year old wants to have to depend on a walker! But it was letting me walk, something that I was told I would never do! I now have a permanent handicap permit and I don’t use it all the time. I use it on my bad days or when I know I will be walking for awhile because I just might not make it back to my car. You see, I can’t stand long on my left leg. Within about 30-45 minutes the throbbing starts and the stabbing pains kick in.  Then within 15-30 minutes after that all begins, my entire leg goes dead, completely numb. Yet my hip is completely ON FIRE. Then I start over compensating and my lower back then gives out. So yes, I am handicap in the eyes of my doctors (not the government), but I don’t consider myself handicapped, I just have limitations that I have work around.

Oh, you were injured in the line of duty? You must be very well taken care of!

OK…I have one word….HA!!! Not even close! That so called family, the “Brotherhood” you hear about…cut the umbilical cord the night of my accident. I had to literally fight for everything; my paycheck, my healthcare, I was even cut off early from physical therapy before I could walk because I was told it wasn’t necessary. I was forced out because I became a liability. The agency I worked for is not part of a union, so the Sheriff dictates how things are run, he changes the rules to FIT as he sees fit. I resigned after 10 years of dedicated service without even a thank you. So, no I am not taken care of, actually if it wasn’t for my family I would be homeless and many of days my daughter and I would gone without food.

What INSPIRES you….

Where do I even begin this?  People ask me this all the time and to be honest I never really give the same answer. It depends where I am at in my life, what I am going through, the situation I am in, etc.  You see many things throughout my life have inspired me. When I was younger, my brother inspired me to stand up for myself. That just because I was a girl, didn’t mean I had to put up with crap. Then as I hit my teen years, I never was the type to idolize celebrities or singers….I had Olympic athletes posted on my walls and quotes of achievements. In high school, I was my own inspiration. I wanted to stand out from the normal. I wasn’t part of any “clique” in school, I became the bully’s bully (I wouldn’t stand for anyone degrading anyone else for any reason), I threw myself into my school work and my sports training. I had goals written on my mirror in my room that I wanted to have crossed off before graduation. There were certain individuals in school that quite didn’t get me (though I didn’t care). I lived in the weight room, I loved it there (funny I still do), it became my place of solace. I broke a lot of records in there too….but mostly I realized I was not just building my outer strength, but also my inner strength. After high school, I made the decision to do a power lifting competition, it was just another thing to cross off my list. You see my list starting becoming not things I thought of, but what others put there…when I heard someone say “You can’t do that…you’re a girl” just spurred me and made me think “REALLY…WATCH ME!”.  Some people thought I set my goals too high, I always thought I set them to low (sometimes I still do). Then my first accident happened, my ONLY inspiration during those most grueling 2 years was my dad. He made me remember everything I once was and still could be. Another inspiration would be my sister, Stephanie. I’ll never forget the day she called me and said, I didn’t lose my sister in 2 serious accidents, I’m not gonna lose her now due to depression. She told me to stop listening to my doctors, they only knew my body…NOT MY HEART. She told me to take back my life and start living again. AND I DID! Throughout my journey so far in life, there have been many friends, family and even strangers that have inspired me. Some don’t even know they have or that they do.

Through all of this though, every inspiration I have had doesn’t amount to the BIGGEST one of all, my daughter. She inspires me daily, sometimes hourly! She is the one who makes me fight through all the hard times, through the pain and suffering, through the times I just want to give up and give in. She is my greatest achievement…one I never had on my list. She has been my biggest cheerleader, supporter, and source of encouragement.

So if I had to choose just one thing that inspires me….it’s ADRIANNA!

So my question to you….what INSPIRES you?



My Challenge

Well, as most know, I am doing a challenge to get my butt back in gear after a terrible 2011 (medically that is).  Let me give you a little bit of a background of what 2011 had for me…I started the year off pretty great…in the gym 5 days a week, but then it came to a halt when I had selective surgery in February, it was a surgery I was looking forward to for over 5 years and one I definitely deserved! Then just when I was able to start back up and moving again and got the OK from my Doc to return to the gym…my back gave. I knew it was serious but with NO insurance, I just suffered through it. I gave up the gym and reverted back to being bed ridden. Finally on Aug 9th, I couldn’t walk and my dad rushed me to the ER, basically for them to just turn me away without doing anything! They thought I was a pain pill shopper (yet I never once asked for a pain prescription…since I am immune to them all!). So my dad brought me home and made a call that changed everything. He called my old Neuro Doc from 10 years ago that did all my 3 previous back surgeries. My dad updated him on my situation (including the on the duty accident), this was Aug 12th…I was given an MRI that day and then told to report to his office first thing Aug 15th. Pushed in a wheelchair, I was told by my Doc to go directly to Cape Hospital for emergency back surgery, I had blown out the 3 discs above my last fusion he did 10 years prior. Again, I was bed ridden for 4 weeks, then slowly started feeling somewhat normal…that was until my left hip started acting up! I had an amazing friend, Amanda, who had a great friend, Edward, that she made a call too. Needless to say he is the TOP joint implant surgeon in the area! He told me to come in Oct 19th to see him…he took one X-Ray and then asked me how I was even walking!! I was schedule that day for a TOTAL LEFT HIP REPLACEMENT on Nov 3rd! He was a little concerned due to just being under anesthesia twice already this year, and also knowing that I have to be doubled dosed with it so I don’t wake up during surgery, but he pressed on! The day of surgery he went over the pain schedule…needless to say I cut him off and told him NOTHING works. He was like, “Are you telling me you are gonna have this surgery WITHOUT ANY PAIN MEDS to help?”…yep that is EXACTLY what I am telling you. He wasn’t sure how to take that. After all, I am only 36…how can I already be immune to all these meds!! Well, surgery was a success…12 hours later he asked if he could try a pain med cocktail with me over the next 12 hours to see if he could try to lessen my pain…I said sure. Well he monitored me closely…and I was alert, not loopy, talking fine and my blood pressure didn’t drop…so then he said I should have basically been dead…the mix he gave could put an elephant down. So he took me off everything and I just suffered through it. Finally on Jan 25th of this year, I got the OK to get back in the gym…and oh boy, did I take that seriously!! I gained 28 pounds over the course of 2011…and my joints can feel it!! So I need to get this extra weight off to get my hip flexors and back/core strong again. It’s my challenge…..

Click here to read MY STORY

Wow…what a journey!

I have gone back and reread a lot of my blogs and I have to admit…DAMN IAM ALL OVER THE PLACE!! I have come to realize in the past months (mostly due to being bed ridden after two major surgeries back to back) that I am severely depressed. I have the want to do things in my heart but my head could really careless. I do a lot of BS talk because I don’t want anyone feeling sorry for me. No one understands just how much I hate hearing the same things over and over, the same questions, the same statements…I can write a book about all of it. The one thing I think people don’t understand is the more positive verbiage you say to someone (and that they hear from 50 other people) actually starts turning into a negative. People say things just to say things because they think it helps…being silent helps a lot more sometimes!  I hate answering the same questions…how many ways can you say “NO, no change.” When you do NOTHING day in and day out but sit in your four walls at your house (somedays not even being able to move) …and someone says “So anything new?” or “So what did you do today?” Really…I have given you the SAME EXACT ANSWER FOR THE PAST 16 MONTHS…and then they question your answer…and then get upset with me because I have nothing different to say. Well…if you don’t like what I say…stop calling me and asking me the same flippin’ questions day in and day out!!

As an update – I am no longer in college, I got screwed financially by Keiser and then I can’t get all the financial assistance I need from Edison to conitinue, so that is on the back burner for a while. I am at 17 months of being unemployed and I am completely FLAT BROKE. I have had a total of 3 major surgeries this year (Feb, Aug and Nov). Due to those surgeries I hgave gained 25 pounds, which only makes things worse for physically and mentally! I have applied for disability, but have yet to hear a word. I am so disgusted by the government, it’s not even funny! I have come to find out, YET AGAIN, who my real friends are. I am single, and plan on staying that way for a while. I am not happy with me, so how can I be happy with anyone else. My heart has been severely used and abused (mostly by me letting it happen) and is needing to just be left alone for a long time. I am severely depressed and yet I can’t be in front of my daughter, so I do A LOT of pretending!!

Yeah…so this is me right now…HOW GREAT!!!

Things happen…

As much as I can say NOTHING has been happening in my world…so much has been happening within me. I am learning a lot about things that I once thought I knew a lot about! (Does that make sense?) I am basically starting my life all over again. Venturing out into a new career, being back in college, about to have a TEEN in my home, being single again and being ok. I know God has a hold of me and of my daughter. I have realized why I have not been happy and I am working on fixing it. I have been asked by a friend to help her tone up, I am getting back at it too…back at eating right and being healthy for me and training with Amanda (who has been such a huge blessing in my life!)!! All I know is that even though I have been jobless for 7 months and dealing with huge budgeting strategies…I am looking forward to all the NEW in my life and saying goodbye to all the OLD!!!