Tuesday, October 18, 2011

When Irish Eyes are Smiling

No Retinopathy!  No damage of any kind to my eyes!

Yay me.  Another year - another checkmark.

I guess it was worth all the drops, dilated pupils and day-long headache to get the good news.  Oh, and being teased all day about being a drug addict because of how crazy my eyes looked.

I had one lady come into my office several times asking if I could please let her turn the lights on.  NO! Bright light!

I was worried that my headache would get worse if I turned the lights on.  So I sat in a dark office all day trying not to look at my computer monitor.

Anyway, all the complaining to say that my eyes are still in good shape and have not yet begun to suffer the ravages of diabetes.

So let's talk about swimming shall we?

Oh, that reminds me of one more thing - I swam this morning and, despite my best efforts with the soap, the chlorine smell was wafting off of me as I sat in the ophthalmologist's chair.  He practically had to sit in my lap to get close enough to check out my eyes.  Normally I just keep thinking "omigod, he's WAY too close!"  This time, all I could think was "should I apologize for the chlorine smell??"

So swimming.

Apparently today was the day that the school swim team starts practicing at 6am.  So my peaceful morning swim was transformed into a boisterous pool with three lanes for the swimmers like me and 3 lanes for about 40 high school kids to share.  It got so steamy in there that they opened the floor to ceiling windows (I had no idea they could do that) to let the 8 degree wind howl through.  My body was toasty but, if I kept me face out of the water too long, my nose got cold.

Since there were so many swimmers - I couldn't have a lane for pool running so I decided to see how long it would take me to swim one kilometre.  Might as well have a challenge right?

I have learned that one length is 25 metres and it takes 40 lengths to swim one kilometre.

A month ago, I would have guessed that I could probably swim 5-6 lengths.  C'est tout.  Now I was going to attempt 40 after only two previous swim sessions.  The first session, I swam 20 (12 of which were breast stroke) and the second time, I swam 30 (again, 12 of which were breast stroke).

Today I did four lengths of breast stroke to warm up and then decided that I had to do the remaining 36 as front crawl.

It took 35 minutes to do it, including a few breaks to catch my breath and fix (gawd it drives me crazy!) my swim cap.

I have no idea if that is a good pace or not but I swam a kilometre today.  Holy bananas!

By that point, the lanes had emptied out a bit so I headed for the deep end with my floatation belt for twenty minutes of pool running.  As soon as I started, a lady in the next lane swam over.  "You're the girl who does the pool running" she said.  "Yep!".  "Why do you do that??"

So I explained my passion for running, my injury and the rationale behind pool running.  She liked my answer and seemed to appreciate my willingness to explain.  I waved goodbye as I left and she smiled.

I have a pool friend!

I figure it will take her one or two more mornings before she gets up the courage to ask why I carry juice boxes with me and what the heck my infusion site is.

Best of all, I had the good sense to get out of the pool at 6:55 rather than 7am so I had already snagged the best shower by the time all the high school girls showed up.


  1. Keep positive about the eyes, I'm glad to hear they are still healthy.
    I'm loving these swim stories you've been sharing. You swam a km, that sounds so far in swimming terms.

  2. Agreed. Love hearing about your swimming progress. Do I smell a tri in the near future?

  3. Yay, happy eyes and swimming a kilometer! Well done. (And thanks for reminding me that it was time to take my lets-not-go-blind eye drops.)