And now for my next trick…

The prompt that appeared when I opened this blog page was, “Is your life today what you thought it would be a year ago?” Mostly yes. A year ago I came to the idea that it was time for a few changes.

I sold my farm in June and retired from Iowa State on October 3rd. On the 25th of the same month, I moved to upstate SC where I now rent a pretty much ridiculously beautiful, but tempermentally-wired (more on that as we go), barn apartment. My two horses, Howdy and Sammy and my two dogs, Dug and Dory, are here with me too. The farm is 47 acres at the base of the mountains and it is beautiful. It has a stunning view of Hogsback mountain. The people I rent from live in the even bigger house on the other side of the property and they are truly great people. I help take care of their horses. I share all this because this kind of thing can happen when a person decides to make a change and steps forward in faith, even, or maybe especially, when not sure how said change will happen. This is the essence of faith.

When I sold my property in Iowa, I had no idea where I was moving, other than “south and horsey.” I was prepared to live in my living quarters horse trailer, with the pups and ponies, floating about, looking at different areas of the country for a period of time. Go where the wind blows and see where I wanted to live. Turns out, not necessary. By the grace of God, the Universe, just pure dumb luck or whatever makes you happiest, here I am. I know which it is, but a rose by any other name still smells as sweet.

Some shots of my home at FlutterBy Farm in upstate SC:

But that was just catch up information there. What I really want to talk about is change itself. Today I called an orthopedist to set up an appointment to talk about what we can do about my left hip. The Iowa docs told me in August that I have severe arthritis in it, and moderate arthritis in the other. August was between farm sale time and closing on the sale time, so I was way too busy packing things to consider addressing it. So I ibuprofened up and carried on.

And that was fine and really, my hip still is not so bad. I can sleep at night (which some my friends with hip problems haven’t had the pleasure of doing before their hip replacements) and this week’s step count is pretty typical (and I’m not riding right now because my horses are lame, boohoo, so these are my actual steps on my own tootsies.) :

But it is time to get a professional involved. Since I retired, (not really, just done with the University and ‘retired’ so that I could continue on the U’s health insurance) I had to switch my insurance from the in-state to out-of-state insurance which is a bit of a learning curve. Last week I tried to use their online doctor search to find an orthopedist, but, no luck, the site was down. Today I tried again and it proved again to be much less than ideal. Long story short, it would only search by general orthopedic surgeons–and there are a lot of specialists like hand, back, knee, ankle, feet, oh and hips. There was a lot of clicking around and dead ends. Yay, not. We seriously need to be more patient-centered in all aspects of health care, but that’s a different blog.

So I finally found an ortho that had really good google reviews, and made an appointment. I thought I would hate making the appointment, but it actually felt good to take care of myself rather than toughing it out for precisely no good reason. We’ll see what the doc says on February 1, 2023 at 8 a.m. And I think I’ll sleep even better tonight, knowing that, if my hip gets worse, help is on the way. It actually seems to be getting better lately since I started doing 20 minutes of yoga each morning, about 5 days ago. Twenty minutes. Five days. Much better. Gah. Why do I ever stop doing yoga?

Oh, and I’m shopping for land or a farm and talking to builders, in case I don’t find a farm. And I signed up for this week.

More on that as we go.

Change is the only constant.