After a day of rest at the hotel, today, was to be a day where I try out my sea legs to see how much or how little endurance I may have. One month of isolation in a hospital, does not lend itself to muscle strengthening, and I knew that, but, WOW, I definitely underestimated the amount of atrophy that can take place in such a short amount of time. Just the act of getting a normal, everyday, full-length shower and getting dressed almost completely wiped me out. Normally, I’m able to push through the fatigue. but, when you couple that with the dizziness/edginess that comes with recovering from chemo and being on a steroid (that always makes me feel like death!) and I knew it was not going at what I consider to be a “productive” day.
Last night, my friend, Kristy Cruise, of Australia, arrived in preparation for her HSCT pre-testing which will begin on Monday. She, mom and I had agreed to meet for the hotel’s breakfast buffet, and I really was looking forward to it. First obstacle? There is no elevator to the 3rd floor restaurant. Every other floor has access to an elevator, but not that one. Mom had already been up the stair case several times and knew that it would be a bit of challenge for me, but I could do it. Mom opted to get me safely up the stairs (see pic), literally, one step at a time and to the restaurant and she would meet with Kristy and return.
We had a lovely breakfast (see pics) and chat, and it was decided that even though I fully intended to go the flea market for a short stretch, that it wouldn’t be very wise to do so, just yet.
Mom and Kristy proceeded over to Izmaylova Market for a very productive couple of hours of souvenir shopping, site-seeing and photo ops. I will admit, I took one of the most peaceful naps that I’ve had the entire time I’ve been here. Wise choice, Brooke. Slow and easy. Earlier, Kristy had graciously gifted me with one her Moving Mountains t-shirts and a few trinkets. One of my fave “trinkets” was a container of Tim Tams from down under. They are kind of a chocolately, toffee wafer type of cookie that are to die for. But, last, but, not least, was a very thoughtful “Ninja” charm (see pic) that she picked up on her way through Japan this week. It is to remind me of the brave “Ninja”, Amy Peterson, whom, had she not blogged her HSCT experience here, I wouldn’t be here right now and about to venture on a life free of the constraints of MS.
Below are a couple of pics of me and Kristy in our room. Just a couple of members of the Sisterhood, hanging out.
So, my first whole day on the outside. Was it everything I had hoped? It was spent with friends and family. There were laughs, and tons of food and naps. and, as it should be, the healing of me has just begun. For this “Impatient Penny”, it’s not an easy task to hold back, but days like these, no matter how limited are precious to me because my life of fear is waning and a life of living awaits. Well worth the wait, if I do say so.Peace, love and naps, from Moscow. 🙂