Recovery done and over, new challenge accepted

Lets say I’m now mostly recovered from my surgery. It’s now all about restrengthening and re-learning. Out of it all, I have a rad scar, no bone being wedged between my heel bone and leg bones, a contorted back and hip, and no stamina and very little energy.

I have become lost from my blogging as… I have nothing to say. You’d think I’d be dying to go to dance. But I don’t. I want to be normal again most of all. I spend my days now stretching for hours on end. Some days are good and some are bad. My achilles is the worst culprit. It does not want to do plantar flexion, which you’d assume meant foot goes down. Plantar flexion actually means foot goes up, towards your knee. DORSI flexion on the other hand is the down.

In other news, my little calf muscle is returning. It’s its own little bulge, slowly returning to form and strength. I find myself a lot of the time standing and putting any weight on my left leg even though I am no longer assisted by crutches. I walk normally, for the most part. Which has become frustrating as I mentioned before my right hip is twisted. Which causes my pants, particularly leggings (yep, you know you’re a dancer when you prefer leggings. Mine are OPAQUE kay!) on my right leg to actually pull up. My hem will be an inch higher than my right. So I’m going to go see my chiropractor soon because not only is my hip being ridiculous, my back is all funky too. So it will be good to get that adjusted. I can’t walk for too long though. Usually an hour of standing/walking and then my foot hurts. It’s re-adjusting to having weight on it.

I still spend a lot of time with my foot elevated. My surgical site continues to swell, or as I call it fluffy/puffy depending on the day. It’s not horrible. An untrained eye wouldn’t notice, but my PT and myself are like “yeesh!”, get that swelling down, yo! I have to do a special soak to try and get out that stuck remaining fluid. 3 min in warm water and 1 min ice water. Back and forth. Not my cup of tea, not excited at all.

This week I’m on my own. No Dr.s appointments and no PT appointments since she’s out on vacation living it up in Hawaii. I’m not jealous because I get to watch the Seahawks in the Super Bowl!! (#gohawks!) Don’t confuse that with watching the Seahawks at the Super Bowl like my Brother thought. I will happily on a friends couch (most likely the floor, stretching) eating Super Bowl food! Not the healthy kind, the bittersweet butt bubble and beer gut forming kind. Yussss… Our Hosts are making steaks… but uhh… bringing weenies in bbq sauce and jalapeño creamcheese dip.

One of those personal things I’ve learned, which I think I’ve mentioned before. Is that I have an adaptable metabolism!! YAY! I still weigh as much as I did before surgery. 107 lbs! You also know you like your PT because her homework she gives you, besides the hated clam exercise, is to balance on your bad foot in a pair of HIGH heels. No problemo.

I shall leave you all with that. As I have a Hemingway book to read while I stretch. And stretch some more. Oh, and them more stretching.

I Love Shoes!

Missing having my feet in shoes, everything from heels to dance shoes. I am a big shoe person. I love fashion sneakers, I love ridiculous high heels, I love a good pair of working dance shoes too.

Here are my two top picks of soft ballet shoes if you’re in the market.

The Angelo Luzio/Body Wrappers TotalSTRETCH soft ballet shoe I loved until summer. I think I still love them, but I haven’t worn them since last summer. I loved these shoes so much that I bought a back up pair and now they’re just hanging out. I wore them all school year last year and had no issues. Turns were great, it accentuated my arch nicely. They were comfortable and were a durable shoe. The Bloch Zenith I had bought a few years prior had a tendency to run a hole at my 2nd toe from friction with the floor. Yet the rest of the shoe was in good form. So that was a quick waste. You couldn’t really tape or mend the hole because of the elasticity of the fabric. The Body Wrappers though was great. The fabric wasn’t TOO stretchy, handled going through the wash to clean up a dirty sole, and came pre-sewn!! Sadly my second pair are now only half sewn. I really like my soft shoes sewn for me. We spend enough time sewing up pointe shoes it was nice to have shoes ready to just wear.

My complaints? During my summer intensive my feet swelled and it was sooooo uncomfortable to wear! My toes were scrunched in my shoes. Which was weird, and not the shoes fault. I had to go in search of a new pair of shoes beginning of the intensive. Before that the shoe was a little baggy around the toes. If you have an average medium width foot you should be fine. Since I have a fairly narrow foot that also compresses when warm it would get a little baggy but it never bothered me until I got a new pair of shoes that fit even better.

So last summer I had to buy an emergency pair of soft shoes while at my intensive. Due to the heat and being on my feet for hours caused my feet to swell. It was impossible to wear my pointe shoes, and it became impossible to wear even my soft shoes! I had to concede and a group of lovely dancers and I left for the local dance store in Oregon called the Leotard. Which was actually great! They were super nice and had a great selection of things. The people there helped me find a new pair of soft shoes by So Danca. The cotton was soft and stretchy, but conformed to my narrow foot better than my BodyWrappers. They allowed stretch so when I swelled it fit comfortably. Yet when my feet went to normal during October the shoe continued to conform. They’re comfortable, stretchy, and turns were fine too. A little bunching but nothing I couldn’t get over. They really hugged my arch and accentuated the foot lovely like. The other plus… PRE-SEWN!! Nothing like slipping on a pair of shoes and just WEARING THEM TO CLASS. The best. These shoes are my current go to in my dance bag. The fabric seems softer/weaker than the BodyWrappers but haven’t shown wear yet. So I’ll get to see what happens, but I still really like these shoes. They are a lighter peachy “ballet pink” but they actually go better with my tights than the tanner color of my BodyWrappers.

What’s your current favorite soft shoe in your dance bag?

Adult Ballet Extension Goal

Can an adult dancer get their extensions? Really nice ones? I’ve seen other Adult Dancers with extensions, but a lot of them were dancers until their teens so they are familiar and still have the muscle capability to do it. I’ve NEVER had my foot developed up to my ear. I wouldn’t mind seeing it at my shoulder. I wouldn’t mind having my straddle splits and I can lie flat between them.

I have a lot of disadvantages. I know my right hip has a tendency to need to be popped frequently when I turn out. I fear I may have a natural curvature/bone growth that impedes giving me full turn out. My hips are always tight feeling. I have no muscle use in my Psoas, so it is no doubt tiny and weak. As are the other muscles in the hip, back and abdomen.

If any of you are readers of mine. You know when I hit a brick wall I attack it. I’ve done 30 day splits challenged and have made headway. I’ve never completed my splits, but I’m going to do that… I’m going to do that along with working on my extensions.

This time though, I’m giving myself more time. I have until June for me to be able to almost get a 180° penché , I want my second at my shoulder, and devant more than 90°.

I will try and get extension and splits photos up and start tracking my progress.

In recovery process, I’ve been personally adjusting my gait. I don’t really limp any more and can stand for extended periods on my feet. My ankle/incision will sharply hurt if I over do it so I sit and ice and elevate. Yesterday though I walked my dog by myself, I went to two different grocery stores, and cooked dinner. Probably next weekend I’ll take the car out to adjust back to driving. Physical Therapy is going well, I’m still out my CPM machine so yesterday I spent time in my old suffolk pointe shoes and helped pushed over my box. I just pushed the heel forward on the sole and it pushed into my arch and helped me go over. I got to wear my shoes in PT, but I could barely get over my box my feet are so weak. Yeesh! More tendus for me.

Happy New Year! Hoping 2015 is a year of progress!!!