Thursday, October 26, 2006
I went to my first water class at the YMCA yesterday and was pleased that I was able to stay for the full hour. It was good because much of the class had options. People with more problems did smaller movements. I was always so tired at the end of half hour pool physical therapy that I assumed I would only last for part of the class but it was much less tiring than the one on one physical therapy in the pool. The class yesterday covered a little bit of everything, stretches, strength, and a portion that was theoretically aerobic but I started off slow with the first session so I never got my heart rate up very high. That's okay, baby splashes. Most of the people in the class were much older than me which was fine too. They were very welcoming and several of the elderly women introduced themselves and took me under their wing so to speak. Turns out that quite a few people have had hip replacements and a variety of issues they are recovering from. I'm going to try to go at least twice a week, maybe three times. If I can do that as well as walking I'll be getting about the right amount of exercise for me for the time being. I'm trying not to think to far ahead. Ideally I'd like to be able to swim laps for a half hour, and start jogging again but that's not realistic at the moment. Doesn't mean it won't ever happen but I need to feel good about what I can do and not look to what I want to do. The only down side of my first YMCA class was giving my membership card to the girl at the desk who checks you in. They started with photo member cards in 2005 and my photo was taken in January, a month before my melanoma diagnosis. The girl looked at my card and said, if you're a guest you have to get the member to sign you in. I said, I'm not a guest, I'm a member. She said, that's not you in the photo. I said, yes that's me before I was diagnosed with stage III melanoma and had a groin lymph node dissection. That's me before chronic pain and lymphedema meant I was no longer running every morning and ended up gaining 60 pounds. That's me when I was healthy and happy and I'm sure I do look a lot different now. Bless her heart. I felt sorry for her because she realized that was me. I didn't put it exactly like that but I included all the details and offered to show her additional ID which she didn't need. She realized she'd screwed up and I realized she was a nice young woman doing her job and I wished I wasn't quite so mean. That said, people should be careful about questioning women "of a certain age" about their photo ID's.