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Gratitude Challenge Extended: Week 18

Hello again,

This post is definitely late and I apologize. I have spent most of the past few days unable to be up much due to my back and writing on here also kind of slipped my mind a bit. But better late than never right? So here is my list.

1. For all the things I have that take my mind off of the pain when it gets bad. Music, television shows/movies, and books are all examples of what I love to use to focus on when the pain is really bad so I don’t notice the pain so much. I have used them excessively the past few days to deal with the pain that has been quite high. I finally watched the second hunger games on Netflix, read through 2 books and listened to a lot of music. 🙂 I don’t know what I would do with out the distractions.

2. FINALLY getting winter tires!!! My goodness could any company/store have taken any longer to order something for me? Sorry. I am supposed to be thankful. lol Now I won’t slide so easily. I actually got stuck on our driveway the day I went in to pick up the tires. lol tires hit the ice and just started spinning and sliding. I have never had all season tires that are so useless on ice. They are what came with the car when I bought it so they are probably not great tires. But I have great winter tires now and that will make a huge difference for driving. 🙂

3. Getting through the week. I was supposed to have surgery this week that would fix the pain that has kept me down. It was canceled. Quite disappointing. To be honest, I fought back tears on Monday when I thought about the surgery I would have had. It felt like all the stuff I was hoping for was taken away. I know it will still happen, just later than expected but it was still disappointing.

4. PInterest humour. I am sure I have mentioned this already but it really helped me this week as it does every week. 🙂 Also things friends share on facebook that are funny are so helpful to make the day brighter. 🙂 No matter how bright or bad your day is, humour is always wonderful. 🙂

5. Baking. I don’t know exactly what it is but I tend to feel better emotionally when I bake. Maybe just the act of feeling that I accomplished something or maybe it is something else. But I enjoy baking and sharing it with people. 🙂 Today I was able to do some which was nice. 🙂

Thanks for reading my blog. I really appreciate it!

 
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Posted by on December 14, 2014 in Gratitude challenge Extended

 

My Review of Canadian Tire Auto Service

Hello again,

After my experience with Canadian Tire, I really felt the need to share how I was treated but I didn’t want to just post a rant about it. No one likes reading rants. At least I don’t think so. So I feel it is better if I keep my cool and share this experience as a review instead. As you may have already figured out, I am far from happy. I would like to share now why I am quite unsatisfied with the Canadian Tire service I received.

I have researched winter tires and different stores that offer them for quite a while now. I wanted to choose the right place to buy them from and not end up paying more than I should or have a bad experience. Although I guess research should include reviews of the store as well which I didn’t think about doing sadly. I found that Canadian Tire offered sales on good tires and had a payment plan that I could pay for the tires over 18 months. I liked that. Overall, most places were about the same price and I thought Canadian TIre would be a good place to go. The payment plan was what drew me to Canadian Tire in the end because buying tires isn’t cheap by any means and I don’t have a lot of money to spare.

So I walked in to Canadian Tire on November 8th of this year to order them. They had a 20x points event that day which is why I went then. I was pretty clueless about tires and what was best. So I asked some questions and I had to run out to my car a couple of times to check things for them like what number was on the side of the tires. I wanted rims with my tires so they could be switched a lot easier each time and it is also much cheaper to do because you can do it yourself. Apparently, they had run out of rims so they had to order some in for me. I asked how long it would take and was told usually around 4 business days. I thought that wasn’t too bad and ordered them. Had I known it would take over a month to get them, I would have gone with someone else right then and there. Yes. Over a month. I had to prepay for the rims so I did get around 20.00 in points or Canadian Tire money as it is called.

I waited patiently for the first week and expected a call of some kind in the week that followed. No call came. So almost 2 weeks after I had initially gone in there, I tried calling to see what was happening. I was told that they had rims coming on the truck and I would get a call the next day. Well that wasn’t too bad I thought. I never got a call the next day. Or any time in the next week either. I had very little patience by this point. 3 weeks and still no winter tires. I tried calling again 3 weeks after I had ordered the tires. This time, I waited on hold for probably 10 minutes before finally hanging up. I had better things to do with my time. My dad offered to stop by there the next day and I was all for it. My dad gets results. 🙂 Although he didn’t have much luck either and told me just to cancel the order. After all, I had back surgery the next week and I couldn’t really wait any longer. But my back surgery was canceled unfortunately so I gave them a little more time. I called again on December 6th to cancel my order and get my money back but I apparently couldn’t do that over the phone.

On December 8th (monday of this week), I walked in to the store and told them I was canceling my entire order. I wasn’t waiting around any longer. This is ridiculous. He tried to get me to put the winter tires on my current rims and I was completely against that because it is quite expensive each time and I don’t want them touching or messing with my good rims. I have heard stuff about Canadian Tire in the mean time and I don’t want to take any chances. I got quite mad and really let the guy know that either I get my rims and my tires or I will cancel my order and there is no way I am taking anything else or paying extra money to have tires switched on my one set of rims. After letting him know this, he conveniently remembered that a shipment of 11 rims came in a few days earlier. Funny how he didn’t remember that before I threatened to walk out. I wish I had threatened to go elsewhere sooner. Maybe I would have had winter tires sooner. It is funny how getting frustrated and raising your voice a bit can help people to remember items that are in the back. He obviously needed the help as well since he couldn’t remember about the rims that he had before I let him know I was serious about wanting my money back to go elsewhere.

Today I actually discovered a website called canadiantiresucks.ca and basically laughed that people hate the store so much that there is a site dedicated to how much it sucks. There is a section specifically for the auto service centre. I wish I had found that before going there. My dad told me already awhile ago never to let Canadian tire do any work on my vehicle but I didn’t know the service for buying rims was so bad too. I urge everyone who reads this to consider going elsewhere for tires and auto service if you don’t already. I tried to email Canadian Tire as well about what was going on and that proved to be pointless as well. Do not go there. Just because it is called Canadian TIRE doesn’t mean they are a good choice for tires. If you want more reasons to avoid the store, just go to the website I shared. I will gladly pay a bit more if it means I will receive better service in the future.

 
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Posted by on December 10, 2014 in Review

 

Gratitude Challenge Extended: Week 17

Hello again,

This week has been tough. I found out I have an absessed tooth which led to my surgery being postponed on Monday. I am glad the tooth issue was caught because it sounds like it would have been bad to have an infected tooth with surgery. I am also sad because I was really feeling excited about things improving and moving on with my life again finally. But my surgery hasn’t been canceled, just postponed. It will still happen. 🙂 Just a little later than originally planned.

Here is what I am thankful for this week.

1. My root canal this morning because that means my tooth can start to get better and the pain can decrease. 🙂 It is hard to be thankful for the root canal itself but I am so thankful for what will happen because of it. 🙂

2. I got through this week which has been extremely long. I wasn’t sure how I was going to manage to get through the week’s appointments but I did. 🙂

3. I got to rest. I have pushed myself so hard to get so much done in a small amount of time before the surgery that I haven’t let myself rest as much as I should. I was getting so worn out from pushing myself so hard. I was physically and emotionally exhausted. In a way, having the surgery postponed had some benefits because I was able to take a couple of days this week (that originally had other appointments) to get some much needed rest.

4. I am done my Christmas shopping and wrapping. I am not normally done this early but because of the surgery, I needed to be. Now the surgery won’t happen till the new year but I still have all the Christmas stuff taken care of. I am thankful it is all taken care of and it is one less thing I need to still deal with. 🙂

5. Free pizza. 🙂 Well in a roundabout way. Safeway had a deal where you buy 2 Delissio pizzas for 9.00 and get 100 air miles which works out to a little over 10.00 when converted to money. This can be spent at participating stores. So it is technically free. 🙂 Plus it tastes fine and is an easy meal when pressed for time. I am not sure if it is healthier than the delivered pizza but it seems to be.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. 🙂 I really appreciate it. 🙂

 
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Posted by on December 5, 2014 in Gratitude challenge Extended

 

Gratitude Challenge Extended: Week 16

Hi again,

I need to apologize first about being late with this post and not getting to writing any extra posts either. This week has been so crazy and it is weird to think that last Friday was only one week ago. It feels more like a month ago. It didn’t even register yesterday that it was Friday and I had to write my weekly post. So that is why I am a day late. I woke up this morning and realized I forgot to write yesterday. lol So here I am. 🙂 Better late than never right? So here is my list for the week. 🙂

1. That this post is my 100th blog post!!! It feels like a bit of an accomplishment whether or not people read my blog.

2. I was able to cross off a ton of stuff on my to do list. I wasn’t really sure how much I would get done this week but I actually did a lot more than I thought I would. I only have just over a week till my surgery and there is still a fair bit to get done. But I would consider myself to be on track to get everything done before my surgery. 🙂

3. A safe trip in to town on Thursday. For those that don’t live in Alberta, we had a massive snow storm this week and the roads were so bad. Parts of the highway were closed due to accidents and apparently over the course of the 2 day storm, there were over 600 accidents in Central Alberta. That is a lot so I am thankful for a safe trip in to town. I had a couple close calls with people almost sliding into me but I got through the trip without any actual incidents. I was so incredibly thankful once I got home again as well.

4. Our wood stove. I am unsure if I already mentioned this but it has been so wonderful this week. Last night we had a windchill of -40 so it was incredibly cold and I was so thankful to sit by the wood stove and warm up.

5. Finding new favorite music with meaningful lyrics. This week I discovered a new song and the lyrics really mean a lot to me and inspire me. I love when this happens. 🙂

Thanks for reading my blog!

 

Gratitude Challenge Extended: Week 15

Hello again,

This week has been rather crazy as I am attempting to get a lot of stuff done in a small period of time. Because of the surgery, I will have to have any Christmas stuff done before hand as well as any preparations for surgery. This means my original deadline to have stuff done for Christmas has basically been moved up by a couple of weeks. It will be nice though once the surgery is done because I will be all done with my Christmas preparations a couple of weeks early which definitely makes it much less stressful. 🙂 Anyways here are the blessings for this week. 🙂

1. Antibiotics. I have tried to fight a sinus infection without antibiotics for a while now (well over a month) and it is just not going away and getting pretty bad. So when antibiotics are needed, I am very grateful for them.

2. The polar vortex is gone again! Wow it got cold fast last week and we were definitely not used to it. But it warmed up again to around normal temperatures which felt hot after the cold weather we had. 🙂 Last week was around -30 and this week was around 0 I think. Today was above 0!!

3. Lists. I love making lists and crossing things off. It really makes me feel like I am accomplishing stuff. It also helps me to see what needs to be done and prioritize. Otherwise I get stressed because there is a ton of stuff to be done but I don’t know where to start. When I can see it in black and white in front of me, it makes a huge difference. 🙂

4. My Phone alarm. I have them set for so many things. Medication, appointments and tv shows are the main things I use my phone alarm for but it is useful for so many things. Otherwise I would totally forget things and be late. lol

5. Mandarin Oranges. 🙂 I love mandarin oranges and they are always so much fun to eat. The Christmas season isn’t the same without them.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. I appreciate it! 🙂

 
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Posted by on November 22, 2014 in Gratitude challenge Extended

 

Gratitude Challenge Extended: Week 14

Hello again,

This week has been a bit crazy and I am looking forward to the weekend. 🙂 Here are the blessings I am thankful for this week.

1. Getting the call on Monday that my surgery has been scheduled. 🙂 I have waited for this call for a couple of months now and I am so thankful to now have the surgery scheduled and it is so soon. 🙂

2. Making it through another week. I have had a very tough week in terms of pain levels being quite high but despite that, I have felt quite positive because I am looking ahead to the surgery that will fix the cause of all this pain I am currently dealing with. I am another week closer to that surgery. 🙂

3. Having a wood stove. This week has been so cold and the snow finally came. We have had to light the wood stove for more heat this week and I love sitting by the wood stove to warm up after being outside. There is nothing quite like sitting by a wood stove (or fireplace) to warm up.

4. Physio exercises. I have been going to physio and getting exercises to strengthen my legs and back so I could go into surgery a little stronger. The more strength I have before surgery the faster I will recover after. I have noticed a difference the past couple of weeks in terms of how much strength I have. It can’t take away the pain but it will make a big difference after the surgery.

5. Discovering Chocolate I didn’t remember I had gotten. It’s like finding cash you didn’t realize you had. lol Sure it is a few months old but it is good chocolate and I have really enjoyed it this week!

Thanks for taking time to read my post. 🙂 I appreciate it!

 
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Posted by on November 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Daring to Dream

Hello again,

Since receiving the date for my next surgery, I have been doing a lot of thinking and planning and I realized that while I have many dreams for the future, none seemed very likely. I have had dreams for some time in the future and not stuff that I truly thought would be possible. This morning I started to dream about the near future. Next year. Real dreams…. or maybe goals is a more correct term. Stuff I see as a possibility of happening either next year or in the next few years. This surgery seems like it might actually be the final one. I feel like there is a chance that I will actually get my life back after this one. I haven’t felt this amount of cautious optimism before the previous surgeries that I feel I can possibly begin to make plans again.

Over the past seven years, my life has consisted of surgery, recovery, complications, lots of medical tests and then waiting for more surgery. Plus being pretty much housebound. Between the first and second surgeries, I spent pretty much a year being unable to sit up for more than about 10 minutes at a time. I didn’t go anywhere except the necessary check ups with my surgeon. It felt like hell for me. My room started to feel like my prison. The years after were not as bad but still consisted of serious limitations. All I have had the option of thinking about is basically surviving each day and trying to make the most of it. I am not trying to complain but just explain the reality I faced each day for the past several years. I would day-dream a LOT. I sometimes got through days by dreaming about the future and what I would do when I got better. 🙂 But the future always seemed so far in the distance and sometimes the future I hoped for seemed unattainable. This has been my reality and it kind of became my identity. I was this person who dealt with limitations and pain and that was all.

Now I feel I finally have the chance to be someone else. I can be the person who gets to choose what I want to do and I get to carry out those goals and dreams I have for myself. I will be able to do what I want to do without having to think about how long I can last till I have to rest my back, having to hide the pain from people around me, making sure I take pain killers on time, or having to work around the other limitations I have faced. I feel like I can dare to make plans for my future which feels like it is next year and not some time that may never come. I am not sure how long it will take to recover and regain my strength but it feels like next year will be my year to begin to do that. 🙂 I could possibly stay out for an entire day without having to deal with pain increasing to the point that I can’t sit up any longer. A whole day! 🙂

I do have to admit that I feel some fear about getting my life back. For the first time in a long time, I will have choices and options on what to do with my life and I don’t want to make the wrong decisions. I look ahead to next year and it feels wide open and full of possibility. I haven’t felt that in a long time. Facing the unknown though is a bit scary for me. For the past several years, I have had a pretty good idea that the year ahead would be more of the same. Of course I never know what will happen but I knew enough to know that I probably wouldn’t be seeing any major changes at least in the near future. One thought I have had is that I should train for a race of some kind, just because I will be able to. 🙂 It would definitely feel wonderful to feel that strength again and to cross some sort of finish line would have a lot of significance for me. I look forward to the next year and seeing where I end up in a year’s time. Or in five year’s time. I feel this is an exciting time for me and I can’t wait to start really living my life again rather than just surviving. 🙂

Thanks for reading my blog! 🙂

 
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Posted by on November 12, 2014 in Surgery and recovery