It has been 694 days (1 year, 10 months, 24 days) since the braces were installed.
My last orthodontist appointment went really well. My braces should be off “by summer”, which in Florida, is basically anytime after the second week of April. So hopefully within the next month or so. The two year anniversary is 6/6/16, a fantastic date, clearly. Ideally, they’ll be off right around then. I need to spend a week or so after that adjusting to having a retainer, slowly whitening my teeth, and taking more selfies than I’ve ever taken before.
At the end of June, I’m planning to go to Toronto. I’ve been before, but it was a short, surreal experience. According to my passport regarding my last visit, I landed at Toronto Pearson International on December 31st, 2009, stayed at The Westin Harbour Castle overlooking Lake Ontario, and flew back to Florida on January 2nd, 2010. I did get to see snow for the first time on New Year’s Eve at the age of 22. One of my clearest memories of that trip is the park that was right next to the hotel, Harbour Square Park. A few of us had stayed out on New Year’s Eve to catch some fireworks, and we decided to investigate this park that night. There was snow on the ground but none falling, and I jumped around in it like I was 5. The park was lit rather eerily, bathed in orange lights that didn’t seem to fully reach everywhere. But there was this massive lake at the end of the park and it seemed like it could’ve been the ocean, it was so vast and dark. But all of us being from Florida, the adventure lasted about 45 minutes before the cold drove us back inside the hotel. The next morning, I woke up without an alarm at 6am. My room was about ten floors up, and I remember throwing open the curtains to see falling snow. I think I spent a good part of the morning just running around outside, reveling in it.
I say all that to illustrate how very different this coming trip is going to be. Six and a half years later, I’m going during the summer and also during a Canadian national holiday, Canada Day. Right now, I’ll probably be there 4-5 days, depending on how flight prices work out. I’ve got a good list going of things I want to see, such as a Toronto Blue Jays game, the Hockey Hall of Fame, and the Toronto Music Garden. I’ve already been to the Rogers Centre, where the Jays play, but when I was there, the field had been set up to accommodate an American college football game. I’m hoping that the roof will be open for the baseball game. It’s really not the same watching a baseball game indoors (I’m looking at you, Tropicana Field). Hockey’s really growing on me, and maybe I can further that by immersing myself more in the history of the game and the great athletes that played it. As for the music garden, I’m basically a sucker for anything to do with classical music, especially Bach. There’s a few other touristy landmarks on the list, such as the CN Tower (maybe an attempt to recreate Toronto native Drake’s recent Views album cover?), the Royal Ontario Museum, St. James Cathedral, St. Lawrence Market, the Distillery District, the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), the Toronto Islands, and Kensington Market, to name a few. Maybe I’ll revisit Harbour Square Park as well.
However, I really want my braces to be off before I go. I’m purposefully trying to schedule this trip at the end of June/beginning of July to allow time for that to happen. I am just so ready to get all this metal out of my mouth.
It has been 207 days (6 months, 24 days) since I broke my collar bone.
It’s getting easier to play on the same field I had my incident on. The first time, it was nerve wracking, and I kept replaying it over and over in my head. I can tell I’m much more cautious while running the bases, so much so that I’ve been switched out with a pinch runner before once I get on base. But I still play, and I feel like that in itself is an accomplishment.
The worst thing that could happen is tendonitis in my right shoulder. It would be incredibly painful all the time and would probably require a shot of some kind directly into the muscle to relieve it. I think I’ve managed to avoid that so far. Unfortunately, the strength is just not there yet in my right shoulder. I can see it in how I throw and hit, and I can feel it whenever I work my shoulders and arms. Earlier today, I went to yoga, just to see how my whole body strength was progressing. There were certain poses that I had to quit early because I could feel my arm and shoulder beginning to shake, but I was still happy with the progress overall. The first time I tried to go back to yoga after the break was a mistake. I remember only being about 15 minutes into the hour long class and I was already in tears from both pain and frustration. I just wanted to heal quickly and be done with it. But I know now that I simply had so much muscle atrophy that it would take more than a month to rebuild it.
All I can do is keep working it right up to it’s limit, ice down afterwards, and not get too frustrated with myself. Quitting would set me back months.