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Hi there!

I'm glad you've come to read my blog, but unfortunately I don't live here any more!

Feel free to trawl through my archives or look up my posts on Scoliosis which will always be at home here, but when you're ready please come and join me at my new home:

See you there!

Catherine Ann x

Friday, 1 November 2013

Scoliosis Update and Site Recommendation!

As you can probably guess from the less-than-exciting title, this is a little space-filler post, sidetracking me from my work on NaNoWriMo tips and studying. My only explanation is that I had SO MUCH TO SAY to you guys!

First, any of you who read my Scoliosis Story might be interested in an update. And for those of you who aren't... well, it's my blog and if I want to complain about my life occasionally (in the name of education of course), you'll have to bear with me ;) 

To be honest, I haven't thought much about my back lately... which is a great sign! But two events made me a little wary of my health in that regard. The other night a group of us stayed over at Crow's and when I woke up in the morning I was... shorter. I know. My first thought was, of course, that Bambi had put a spell on me in my sleep to make me shrink, but in fact my height does vary a little when my muscles don't get the rest they deserve. After stretching, or having a proper night's sleep flat on my back, I'm generally taller. If this doesn't happen, though, I can be a little stooped. This hasn't happened much since before the operation, so it worried me ever so slightly. Especially since incident number one... 

A few days before, we'd played hockey in PE. I was really proud of myself for actually taking part no matter how many times my knees got bashed (six). The thing is, you have to sort of bend in hockey in a way I wasn't used to, and I've never really learned how to do it properly. Everything was fine till around nine o'clock that night when my back got a little sore. Then I tried moving around and it got even worse. I'm no stranger to this, so I took a painkiller and alternated between lying on my back and getting up to exercise a little. 

Sadly, things were even worse the next morning. I had to get up for school but every time I even rolled onto my side I was in intense pain. It was like a burning sensation across my back, followed by an ache which intensified as I tried to sit up. I took more painkillers (which I hate to do, but sometimes it's necessary) and my mum had to help me get dressed.

I was nearly in tears at the thought of school. Luckily, Phoenix came to the door and when she saw how bad I was she brought my stuff out to the car and carried my backpack for the entire day... (Can I just say, if you're going to have an operation, bring her, she's awesome). 

By the end of the day, I'd loosened up considerably. Mum commented in the car that "this never would've happened if you exercised more".

I'm not sure I agree with her there, and I was much too hopped up on paracetamol to be in the mood for advice right then, but I can see now she might have had a point. Possibly.

So today, I took Bambi's advice and went for a run.  I still got a bad feeling at the top of my spine, like a ton of bricks was attached to my vertebrae, but I'm hoping that if I keep up the gentle exercise it should help a lot. It's so important for anyone, not least post-op scoliosis patients, to keep up their exercise and make sure their body gets a good stretch on a regular basis! 

I'm also hoping that getting out and getting active will help me sleep a lot better, which is so important as my exams creep ever closer. I think back to those days in the summer when I'd come home after a long walk or a swim in the river with my friends and flop down on my bed, exhausted, ready to fall straight asleep. That's really what it should be like every night.

My run today, hopefully the first of many, wasn't exactly the most fun I've had in my life. It was freezing, not exactly picturesque, and I'm positive the cows next door have it in for me... but I'm not going to let that stop me.

Aside from this update, I wanted to quickly recommend a website for you guys. I'm currently wading through the UCAS application process, which is how you apply to go to university in the UK. From searching various questions with varying degrees of frustration, I've found the site to be really helpful and I highly recommend it. They're not even paying me, I swear. It's got everything you need from GCSE (that's Junior Cert) level right through to university or college, as well as other information, for example on health and relationships. I really love the forums and threads where you can pose all your questions to people who are in the same boat as you. I think as it's aimed mostly at older teens, Leaving Cert and college age, you don't get the nasty comments and fights like you would on Facebook or Youtube. It's just genuinely nice people who want to ask for and seek advice. I've become a huge fan and it's helped me loads with my UCAS application. Just thought some of you ought to know ;) 

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