What I wanted to say

Cathy ZielskeCZ Life43 Comments


Last Saturday, I had a moment.

It wasn't a great moment. It was a sit-in-your-bed-and-cry-because-you're-feeling-really-sorry-for-yourself kind of moment.

I've gone to the doctor's office twice, to the drive-thru bank and to the nail polish store. Four trips in five weeks. That's it.

I was starting to feel a) a little stir crazy, and b) frustrated by what I am still not able to do because of this foot issue.

So I wrote out this long post. It was reaaaaallly whiny but framed in such a way that made it seem like I was being an adult and responsible for all of my feelings. I was so not being responsible.

It even included talking about myself in the third person.

And I think most of us can agree, that is never a good sign.

Then on Sunday, I read a book. Tuesdays with Morrie. I'd never read it before. I always thought it was sort of an ABC Afterschool Special kind of story. I read it because Aidan had read it the day before on a recommendation from one of her teachers and she said it really touched her.

And yep, it touched me too. More importantly, it snapped me out of acting like a big baby and realizing that if my foot never improved one iota, and this was how it was going to be for the rest of my days, at least I had days.

I had days.

So this morning, when I went to the garage to see if today was the day I might drive around the block, just to test out my sea legs, so to speak, and found the car battery was as dead as dead could be. Well, I just smiled.

Sure, I said, "Mother f#@$er!" first. But then took a deep breath.

I have days.



The Designer Digitals 3rd Quarter sale begins today. Save 30% storewide. I have lots of new digital goodies in the store, including stuff for Halloween. In my book, it's never too early for Halloween.


Cathy ZielskeWhat I wanted to say

43 Comments on “What I wanted to say”

  1. #1
    mary e.

    Hey CZ –

    I get it. I know the ‘man this stinks BAD, but if I whine, everyone will think I’m a…. whiner’ thing you’re goin thru.

    12 years ago, I was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Kids were really little (1 1/2 and 3), we’d just had a house fire, and I remember sitting in my living room, sobbing like the end of the world had arrived. In many ways, for me, it seemed that way.

    One of the most incredible things my friend gave me,was the complete permission to lose it. I was able to sit and sob, snot running all over the place, and bawl my sorry little brains out (whoa-that pun was NOT intended). And on more than one occasion.

    Then, like you, I woke up after surgery, on a respirator, trying to figure out if I was still in ‘this’ life, or the next. (Fortunately for me,it was this life, as I often think the next life may give me what I actually deserve, and I was definitely not there).

    Point of the story: I was never so happy to clean a diaper, pick up toys, wash socks, do doggie duty. You name it.

    Did it make it all sunshine and roses? Heck no. Were that mountains to be climbed? Heck yes. Did I come out of that situation stronger, braver, more in-tune with me/my world? Heck yes. Heck yes.

    You sell yourself short sometimes there, Miss CZ. Creative souls like you often forget that the act of living is art itself. You share yourself with us out here in blog-o-sphere, and it makes a difference.

    So, I get it. Amazing what a little pin / toe can do to bring us to a standstill, or to our knees, huh?

    In the words of my mother, “this too shall pass”. Honest to goodness, it will. In the meantime, enjoy a ‘moment’ or two, and keep on dragging that darn toe around. I need it.

  2. #3

    I too loved ‘Tuesdays with Morrie’. There is another great read that made me appreciate having ‘days’, and that is Still Alice, about a woman with early onset Alzheimer’s. I would strongly recommend it. My aging Mother has dementia that is worsening at a rapid rate. That book has helped me appreciate and hold on to those moments of lucidity that my Mom still has.

  3. #4
    Martha S

    “Mother f#@$er!” is right! And it’s f’ing hilarious! Ah, the crazy lives we live. This too shall pass, Cathy. This too shall pass, and you will chuckle about it one day. You’ll be an old grandma pushing around a walker (the kind with the seat, of course), yelling at the grandkids about “In my day we used to get surgery where they put pins in your feet!” and they’ll look at you like you’re crazy and then everybody will laugh while you take a seat on your little walker thingie and remember to yourself that at least you have days, beautiful, complicated, long but wonderful days. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  4. #5
    Holly S

    A dead battery and your foot is a sign! LISTEN TO IT! Are you moving through life too fast? Are you missing out on the little things? Are you missing out on the big things? Are you focusing on things that really don’t matter and rushing past things that do? Don’t speed through this recovery-you may again be missing out on something-some lessons maybe? Sending awareness vibes your way.

  5. #7
    Vicki aka mizbizibee

    Sort of there myself Cathy. On May 20 my home was destroyed in a tornado that tore through Moore Oklahoma. I’ve had a long emotional summer and now settled in my lovely new home. Then I found out the rubber stamping store where I teach will close in October. It wasn’t out of the blue but still it’s a big deal. While I’m so very very thankful for all the help and blessings of this summer, it’s not been a bowl of cherries and my creativity has really taken a beating. I’m trying to just be in the moment, not look too far down the road and be at peace. We’ll get there, it will just take a while.

  6. #8
    Terri Howard

    I agree that you have permission to “loose it”. Granted. Absolved.

    13 yrs ago, Mom’s house burnt to the ground, almost with her in it. Sorted through sh*t, packed up and stored her stuff, moved her, contractors daily, flunked my mammo, ill aunt got iller, 3 lumpectomies, 25 radiation treatments, ill aunt died, packed her sh*t up, sold her house, still rebuilding mom’s house, daughter entered puberty, hit menopause from cancer, moved mom back in, unpacked…26th radiation treatment had the first of many anxiety attacks. Cancer psychologist offered me absolution by saying, “all this sh*t in one year to one person, and you fall apart now? Good on you! Anyone else would have lost it a long time ago!” I’m was like, why now?
    We all come to that point. I’m glad that you have reached AND passed yours!

  7. #9
    Tammy B

    Doesn’t it just figure that when you are ready to get something done, something else gets in the way. For example, you want to wash a load of towels but the washing machine breaks down (Monday), can’t go look for a new one because son #1 is having dental surgery (Tuesday) and you have to stay home with him for at least 24 hours after (into Wednesday) and your parents are coming to bring fresh vegetables from their garden (Thursday but thankful for them and the vegetables). I figure that I might have to make one trip to the Laundromat before a new machine makes an appearance in my house!! It’s nothing like being relegated to your house for five weeks after surgery but stuff happens and I guess we just have to deal. Oh yeah, and we had some light rooftop frost this morning so I guess Fall has arrived a little early here in northern Alberta. Best of luck with the driving Cathy!

  8. #13

    Hang in there Cathy!! I echo the above people with “this too shall pass”. It sure doesn’t seem like it when you are in the midst of s*it but it really does. Definitely use this time to read more, it is a great escape. I agree that Still Alice is a great book. If you want another one that will touch you read The Fault in our Stars by John Green. I seriously sobbed and could not stop crying after reading it. Very therapeutic!!

  9. #14
    Dawn M

    I can’t say anything more or better than anyone else above me here, so I’m just going to say thanks for the post. Thanks for making me think. Thanks for all the others that put it out there in the comments. And big hugs coming your way.

    Have a beautifully splendifirous day!

  10. #18

    I read Still Alice too, gave it to my mom to read after. Then we all had early on set Alzheimer’s. We told each other that was what was going on, we had excuses for lost phones, burnt toast, forgetting what we were talking about mid-sentance. It’s a good read, but a bit scary too.

  11. #19
    Jennifer Reynard

    Love your honesty and openess in your post! Can’t believe all of the trials everyone seems to have gone through or is going through. Thank you for sharing…you never know whom you may touch with your post! Be gentle with yourself and you will work through this! Smiles to you and have a better day! Jennifer, Calgary, ALberta, Canada

  12. #20

    Nothing wrong with having a little pity party. This spring, a week before our third child was born, my husband was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (cancer of the lymph nodes). Then our son was born and he unexpectedly ended up in the NICU for various issues. The first night I left the NICU without my baby (24 hours after giving birth), I sat in our bathroom and cried, wondering why I was being put through this. My husband’s cancer is now gone, after 8 rounds of chemo. And our baby is thriving and getting chunky. So have faith! (And allow yourself time to be angry about the circumstances.)


  13. #22

    Last night I took my kids to a small local play production. The play lost my attention, but the kids loved. it. However, I noticed a lady in the row 2 in front of me. And she looked JUST.LIKED.YOU. I stared at that lady for an hour. Willing her to turn around so that I could prove to myself that Cathy Z was in my city and I was going to get a photo op for my PL album! I even said to myself, “why would she come to AZ with her bum foot?” She had your hair, your glasses, your shoulders. I seriously drove myself nuts for an hour thinking it was you. Anyway, when the play was over, it clearly wasn’t you. And I was sad. LOL
    Enjoy a good laugh today on my behalf. It will help you heal that foot so you can actually come to AZ someday. ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. #23

    Sometimes it’s those “Mother f#@$er!” moments that make you step back and just laugh…or cry…or both! I get it! Been thinking about you a lot, Cathy.

  15. #25
    Helen shields

    Loved Tuesdays with morrie, read it in one sitting. My daughters got homework tonight which has asked her to rewrite the sermon on the mount in modern day terms. Had a similar effect on me tonight. Stop take time to see all the beauty and blessings in your life. Things happen and come to us at different times because we need to learn something from them. These aren’t always happy lessons but necessary ones. Take joy I. What you can do, not what you can’t. Sometimes a tough thing to appreciate. Hang in there mrs.

  16. #27
    Maureen Mathis

    Heard somewhere recently that all people need to be truly happy is someone to love, something to do and something to look forward to.

    The rest is just crap.

    (I added that last part!) Who knows, maybe it was you that posted that in a blog post. It seems like something that would come from you; direct, concise, TRUE! Personally, I think you’re being way too hard on yourself. This is just a season you’re going through, and it will pass in it’s own time. Some days will end with a ๐Ÿ™‚ and some days will end with a ๐Ÿ™ but they’ll all be followed with another day, whose type has not yet been determined, thank goodness!

    We love you regardless of the day you’re having; try to take comfort in THAT! And we love that you’re open enough to share the cracks through which your light shines into our lives!

  17. #28

    I have a friend.
    He and I both read Tuesday’s with Morrie years ago and talked about it after.
    He said “That’s one disease you don’t want to get”
    15 years later he is in the last stages of that very disease.
    It is devastating.
    But…..He is just glad that he may actually see his 4 year old daughters first day of school…just maybe.

    Nothing wrong with getting p*&*&&*# off with the world, but that uppercut call perspective is the most wonderful thing.

    Sending love…and have a massage ’cause all that limping is going to give you back strain ๐Ÿ™‚

    Fran A

  18. #29

    Well, Cathy, I love reading your posts – I love that you are honest and real. I hope writing them help you through it. I too am struggling with issues. Not the same – I can walk, am well and have a good job. But with my daughter off to college and my youngest busy with school, I am struggling to find what is next in store for me. What do I have to look forward to? What will make me happy? I know there are people worse off then me. My youngest is going to volunteer to help with kids her age but have Autism. I listened to those parents describe what they wanted their child to get out of this class. I was heart broken and I realized that I am so blessed that my children are not dealing with any issues. They have the opportunity to live healthy and happy lives. Why am I do down??!!! I still have a long way to go but I know that the only thing that will help me is to realize that things can always be worse. Be happy with what you do have. …. I’m still working on this! ๐Ÿ™‚

    My prayers go out to you and hope that your foot heals quickly!!<3

  19. #30

    Consider that 3rd person whine a necessary part of accepting the frustrated, angry part of you. We all have those bits of ourselves. I often wonder how I can be this old and still such a spoiled baby at times. A 69 yr old baby!

    But yes, we have days, and damn straight we usually need a kick somewhere, somehow to go …Oh yeah, I have days. Thanks for reminding ME!

  20. #31

    Cathy, surgery effing sucks. It m@%#!er effing sucks. I was ther, too earlier this year. An unplanned, emergency surgery. Cut from my pelvis to my rib cage. 42 staples. A sh&*%tload of pain. And months of recovery. I have lost it many times. I have cried many times (from pain, physical and mental). I have felt guilty when I couldn’t care for my child, my home, or myself. In time, things got better.

    But when I was in the muck, it felt like it never would. I thought I’d be bent over forever. I thought I’d be in pain forever. But in time, it has mellowed. In time things have healed. Not as fast I’ve wanted it to, but it has healed.

    Be as gentle and kind to yourself as you would be to anyone else in your situation. You’d give them the benefit of the doubt, why not yourself? You’d be patient with them. Let them heal, ask them what they needed. Why not you?

    Of course this will look different in a year from now. But right now? It sucks. and it’s m@%#!er effing okay to say so.

  21. #32

    Thank you for writing this, Cathy. I needed to laugh today and when I read that part about you uttering a profane word in the garage (rightfully so), I was chuckling out loud. Wishing you a speedier recovery!

  22. #33
    debbie McIntyre

    Some days are harder than others. Some days profanity is needed. Smile as often as you can and hope that tomorrow is a good day. xo

  23. #34
    Missus Wookie

    Having just had a frank talk with my physio therapist in which she said, ‘This is agonisingly frustratingly slow isn’t it? – BUT you are improving’ I do relate.

    There is an Agatha Christie quote I remember when things are black (keep meaning to make a quote card for a LO with it) ” I like living. I have sometimes been wildly, despairingly, acutely miserable, racked with sorrow, but through it all I still know quite certainly that just to be alive is a grand thing.”

    Hope you see some improvement and the pity party helped ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. #39

    I read “Tuedays with Morrie” earlier this year as my mother had just died and my sister was dying. I shed a lot of tears because Morrie reminded me so much of my wonderful father who died almost 17 years ago of lymphoma. Morrie and my Dad were so similar that I could hear Dad’s voice and his wisdom as I read Morrie’s words and it brought me such comfort. I would recommend this book to anyone who is suffering in a similar way.
    There is so much for us to be thankful for and Cathy I know from your scrapbook pages that you make a conscious effort to be aware of this. So what if you fell off the wagon and had a whine session? We all feel sorry for ourselves and occasionally all it takes to make us feel better is for someone to recognise that we’re having a really Sh***y time and to give us permission to have a bit of a wallow. Hope you’re feeling happier tomorrow. x

  25. #40

    Ah yes, peri-meno sister! totally been there, more than once this year… damn F&#$@R hormone ridge being 47 (for me) sometimes sucks…and yes, at least I have days… my mother and sister both passed away this past year and they don’t… sometimes I forget they don’t have any more days.
    CHEERS (with wine of course!)
    PS: just hopped back on the “looking at my pictures, and maybe doing something with them” wagon, which I dropped off for past year, but your blog has brought me back. Thanks.

  26. #41
    Abby P.

    Saw this quote on Pinterest: “Remember to breathe, as many of our worries today will probably not be so important a year from now”. It hit home with me after I had a total ankle replacement. Went thru the roller coaster of 1 step forward, 1 step back. I’m 2-years post-surgery and feel AWESOME! I’d do it again in a heartbeat – I’m alternating between riding a Lifecycle and using a Treat Climber 45 minutes, 6 days a week, and doing strength training, and I’m 53. You will be BACK soon, and as a reader said above, recovery will only be a memory.

  27. #42

    Thanks Cathy for “keepin’ it real!” (again)

    Earlier this week I saw a clip of an Ellen DeGeneres show where an older woman was on the phone and somewhere in the conversation said to Ellen, “I love Jesus, but I drink a little…” I think that is an awesome way to put things in perspective!

  28. #43

    Just catching up on my blog reading. Loved this post. One of my sisters was in a terrible car accident and got out of it with a broken foot. She is a runner also and had a difficult recovery and lots of difficult days. When she’d lament that she couldn’t run I’d remind her that she at least had a foot. And days? Having more days is really good. By the way, she’s running again. Hang in there.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *