Sunday, September 5, 2010

Can't I just graduate already?

To put it simply, I'm done. I want out. First week of senior year and I'm already waking up at 6 am pondering major life decisions and freaking out about all the work I have to get done. So I'm going to take this opportunity to update this thing instead.

I'm doing an independent research project in biology, ironically enough looking at the factors involved in chondrogenesis and cartilage differentiation. Maybe I can find a way to grow some for myself in a dish? I'm really excited to be doing it but right now I have this massive proposal just looming over my head. And it's really no fun at all. As soon as I think I've found something that ties the two primary factors I'm looking at together, I find some article that has already tested that link and I'm back to square one. My brain is about to explode.

Then there's the dance department. I'm taking their anatomy class this semester. Basically, I'm relearning everything everything from Animal Phys last fall but in a turned around and slightly wrong way. And every time I answer a question, I'm met with a "how did you know that?!" from the professor. So it should, in theory at least, be an easy class but it's so freaking full of busy work. I spent three hours yesterday coloring in my coloring book. SUCH A WASTE OF MY LIFE. Because coloring in cartilage cells (I just love how everything is coming together...) is really going to help me learn about them? I'm also enjoying all the talk about how the hip is such a strong joint and how they don't usually see cartilage problems until people are at least middle aged. Does that mean I'm going to kick it at 34? Because I'm pretty sure my cartilage started falling apart when I was 17... There was also a nice dig at hip issues when the professor said "if you're overweight, you'll usually run into these problems sooner." Ha. Thanks.

The dance department also apparently thinks I'm still a cripple. I can't wait to get out of here and be somewhere where NO ONE knows about my hip stuff. Because I'm getting really sick of getting looked over for casting, presumably because they still think I'm fragile and something that they need to be careful with. I promise, I'm done being broken. It's either that response, the "oh, well we're just worried know, you were injured for so long" or the "well, you're too much of a ballet/modern dancer" when auditioning for a modern/ballet piece. Getting real old.

My hips honestly feel fantastic though. I'm dancing 4-6 hours everyday, Monday-Friday and feel great. We have screenings for anatomy in two weeks and I'm really curious to see if there's any obvious differences between the right and the left (other than my goofy uneven turnout) and off from "normal". Like really really curious. I'm also predicting that not only will they have a field day with that and my uneven turnout but also with my assembled-backwards knees. We shall see...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Well hello spring semester, where did you come from??

So apparently it's March. That's news to me. Where did the first half of the semester go? I mean, I know the first week of it I was still mentally in London, then there was Snowtorious B.I.G., but really it's mid-semester already? Not complaining...

Things with the hips are, surprise surprise, pretty darn good. They're tolerating 4+ hours of dance daily far better than I could have hoped. Yea, they flare up from time to time and just downright feel like shit some days, but so far I haven't missed a class because of it. My right hip has also developed a CRAZY amount of turnout. My right side has always been better but it's well over 90 degrees now and controlling it all is definitely a struggle, never mind actually using it... Lefty is still golden at just shy of 90. Made Laura proclaim that she hated my fifth position because if I'm not careful, I make up what lefty lacks with righty; meaning righty is over rotated and it looks ridiculous. But what can ya do?

Right now, aside from crazy leg righty, the biggest struggle is just trying to convince the faculty that I'm not fragile--that I can be pushed just as hard as anyone else in the department, that they don't need to be careful with me. Like when I ate marley today in pointe class because my shoes are so shot that I just kind of fell out of them, the teacher immediately jumped up and was like "oh my goodness, Megan, are you okay!?" and made me promise that I was fine. By that point I had already jumped back up and was continuing on with the combination. And someone else had already toppled that class when they hit the sweet spot on the floor mid fouette and down they came--they got a simple, "You okay? good". I'm just sick of feeling like I have more to prove than everyone else--that these injuries aren't me and that they don't make me any less of a dancer than anyone else in the department.

While the hips are holding up to the schedule alright, my feet and ankles are not. They hurt. A lot. Lately they've been crazy stiff. I'm trying to take it easier--like not taking Laura's class in pointe shoes anymore but I think the sheer volume isn't treating them well. We'll see.

Also, starting to think ahead to next semester. The preliminary schedule has anatomy and ecology at the same time. Right, the two classes I absolutely HAVE to take next semester--same time. FML. Still don't know if I'm moving up in ballet or modern next semester--I feel like moving up in ballet would be really good for me, but not sure that the department will go for that for the reasons detailed earlier. And modern, I'd love to move up and feel like they probably will move me up but it'll be going back into Graham. As much as I love Graham (and I really do, no sarcasm here), I know that not having it this year is what is saving my hip flexors. And if I move up, I will need to make sure my schedule has room in it for weekly PT appointments to deal with whatever I end up doing to them. So it's a toss up.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Things are okay? Really? *knocks on wood*

At least things with the hips. I'm almost scared to say it but they're really feeling good. Even Mr. ILikeToComplainAlot Righty. I was worried when I realized I'd be dancing everyday this semester, as in 7 days a week, but I'm so happy that things are going so well. Even with tech week and going through things on the dreadfully hard stage. I think this will be my first ever vacation during which I don't have to see Kocher. Sure beats last Thanksgiving when I flew out of B-more at the ass crack of dawn and went straight from the airport to go get Righty arthrogramed and MRI'd. I'm pretty pumped. I'm amping up the dance schedule again next semester with not only ballet 5 days/week but also modern and pointe 5 days/week. Plus whatever rehearsals there may be on weekends. I'm hoping for the best but am ready to step it down a little if need be.

We've been working on my alignment a lot. Like the fact that my knees can touch when in a wide second apparently isn't something I should be proud of. haha. But I really think that's been helping to take a lot of the extra strain off my hip flexors and hips in general. That and the lack of Graham classes this semester. Though I miss Graham, if it keeps my hips feeling good, I'm okay with it. But I might try to sneak a class in once a week next semester.

Otherwise, my life is absolutely insane. I cannot wait for this semester to be over. Three upper level bio courses, two with labs was a REALLY bad choice. No labs next semester, only one bio course, and the rest filled with dance? SOUNDS FAB TO ME. Right, and it's tech week. I'd say I'm looking forward to break but it's tech week for the 254 show when we get back, in addition to the two exams and lab report I have due that week. haha.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Q: What are you being for halloween? A: Asleep, in my bed.

That's the kind of semester it's been. Two 300-level bio courses, one with a lab, plus animal phys--a 200-level course that should be a 300-level--plus comp and all the other dance classes and insane rehearsals. BAD CHOICES. Yes, it's Halloween and I'm fully anticipating getting an insane amount of sleep tonight because I haven't gotten enough in far too long.

The Jessica Lang residency was AMAZING. She's probs one of my new fav people but the whole 5 hours of rehearsal plus class every day for a week thing demolished my hips. As did my little trip down the stairs during a fire drill at 4 am. I went and saw the PT here about them, she thinks they're just horribly out of alignment thanks to the freakish hypermobility in my hips, knees, and back (and really, my body in general). No surprise there. Doesn't help them to stop pinching and grinding though.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

This isn't an annual event!

Okay, so first off, Mr. Psoas has been a little grumbly over the past few days so I've been keeping a legwarmer pulled up on my right leg. No big deal, I'm like this at least 50% of the time.

Anyways, yesterday Karissa came up to me at barre and was like "so, are you having hip surgery this week?" I was very confused and was like "not that anyone has told me about?..." I thought the legwarmer was confusing her but apparently the email from last year reappeared in her inbox. haha. Umm yea...despite what it seems, this isn't an annual event! I mean, it has been but...lolz.

So, in the past few days, I've essentially sold my soul to the dance department. I got into the residency with Jessica Lang later this semester (WICKED EXCITED!!!) and also a 254 (or whatever it is these days...) piece. Woo. Now I just can't eff up my hips too much. Right, like that always goes according to plan...Oh, and Liz (aka 9 am ballet teacher) is in charge of the res stuff so I can't keep screwing up so bad in class...uhh.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

One Year.

Holy shit, it's already been a year since lefty was scoped. And what a year it's been. Looking back, I don't think lefty has been anything short of perfect. Okay, maybe not perfect since it had to be scoped and all (and I'm convinced these scars aren't fading as nicely as righty's!), but pretty damn good. I'm not thrilled with the fact that it's still not as strong as righty but that's my own dumb fault for being afraid to push it too much and end up with tendonitis over there too.

Righty is strong...and that's about all that it's got going for it. Otherwise, righty sucks. It played the pinchy game on me today in ballet class and I almost had a fit. I really hate this. I'm being nice to it--warming it up well before class, trying my hardest not to crank my turnout, and icing it at night--so this is unacceptable! Granted, it has gone from hot and humid to winter in the matter of a weekend (winter being used very's been in the high 50s in the morning and then warming up to the mid 70s) but that's no excuse for being pinchy like this!! other news, classes started today. At least in theory. I mean, Hiller canceled advanced genetics lab on us at 7:30 this morning (after I was already awake!!) and Animal Phys lab starts next week, so all I had today was Karissa's ballet class. And there are faculty auditions later tonight (really, why are they at 9 pm on a Tuesday?!). Tomorrow will be quite the adventure...9 to 6 solid. Also starting back riding on Thursday...I'm a little nervous since, ya know, I got on a horse for the first time in 2 years (and 2 hip surgeries!) last February and then haven't ridden since May. haha. But it should be good. AHHHH.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Apparently absurdly hot and humid is the answer?

Moved back to Baltimore on Thursday. Hauled all my crap up to the fourth floor. Started 3+ classes a day (no Liz, I haven't ditched) on Friday. Shoved an Ikea couch in Shannon's trunk and hauled it up to the fourth floor on Saturday (more about that in a was an adventure). And it's August in Baltimore. My hips have every reason to be horribly angry with me, even lefty. But they've been perfect.

Well, almost.

Lefty got a little pinchy on me on Sunday after classes and righty has been playing the "I'm going to tighten up into a knotted ball" game on me on and off. But really, every other part of my body is screaming out, this is to be expected. And it's nothing that an ice pack and/or some icyhot can't resolve. Now if only things could stay like this...

So, that ikea couch. We went and checked out a sofa bed at some sketchy warehouse store but it weighed about 8 million pounds. So that wasn't about to happen. Had we left with that one, there'd be a red polka-dotted couch chilling in the middle of Pearlstone lawn. We went with a lovely white canvas one from ikea instead. It's already got a few stains. Anyways, it was in an 88 lbs box but we figured if we had to, we could always take it up piece by piece. Thank you Ikea for "some assembly required." After the scene we caused getting it on our cart and through the checkout (I had to climb on the shelf and shimmy behind it to push it out...we couldn't pull it), it had started to downpour. Once in the parking lot, we realized that the box was about as wide as Shannon's car. Luckily a very nice man helped us to shove it in her trunk, otherwise we would have been tying it to the roof which definitely would not have ended well. Got back to school and struggled to un-wedge it from the trunk. When we finally were about to get through the door, the box broke (it was completely drenched) and couch parts spilled everywhere. Yup. It's now sitting assembled in the middle of our room, looking lovely.