My Resolution – Welcome to a New Life
My time is now. I made this big decision – it only took me 7 weeks from job offer to accept the offer, and moving to a new country!
I turned my life upside down. I know that I hurt some people with my decision, people I really care about. But when you have this inner voice that is telling you that something has to change, or you will never be at ease, then you have to do it.
A lot of my friends were shocked, but most said: “we are so excited for you, I always saw as a person that needs to get around and discover new places”. Am I that person? Were my friends able to see that I am somehow restless, because I always have something to do but that I was never really happy, knowing there has got to be more to life (reminds of this early 2000s pop song… ah, I forgot the artist… “there’s gotta be more to life….”)
Probably, it could be any other place in the world, but destiny brought me to Finland. I am only here for a few days, but it feels like I came to stay!
The new job will bring new challenges, different responsibilities, but I am so excited. I have to use this new (re)born energy not only for my work life but for my personal life.
I have to get back on track, my nose is finally good. My headaches only come up occasionally, back and knees are working surprisingly fine.
I will need a plan, but I wanna become fitter, better, stronger again!
When I look back on my life so far, I can call myself very lucky. I have a fantastic family, loving parents, and in the meantime siblings that I get along with quite well J (Oh, do not ask how much I hated my little sister at some point as a teenager, such an annoying… but we all grow up, and now she is one of my closest and best friends <3)
OK, I just noticed this will be a long read…
So long story short: I got sick, had a surgery, never really got back on track, had a few throwbacks, lost my motivation to be active, but this is over.
If you actually want to read more about this… here you go:
I always wanted to try everything, and my parents supported me, as far as possible or reasonable. When it came to sports, I remember that I had judo classes in primary school, was in a swimming club, played tennis… when I was 7 or 8 years old, a friend dragged me to handball practice – oh and that was my thing: it involves a team, a ball, you can score, win, and party together (ok, to admit the party part came a bit later, not in the early youth teams). Ever since I stuck to handball. Besides, I also took horse-riding classes at some point and went to a ballet-like jazz dance class with my girlfriends. When I was 16 or 17, I trained Capoeira (kind of a Brasilian dance fight/play), I even obtained the first “belt” called “corda”. But Capoeira practice collided with handball practice, so I picked handball.
As teenage handball players, I think we were 15, we had one preseason summer where we had a contemporary gym access and a precise workout plan. I loved it. It was so cool to see how fast my body was able to build muscles, unfortunately, we did not stick to it.
When I started my pharmacy studies at the university at age 19, I had no idea how time-consuming it would be. It turned out I spent October-February and April-July in classes, seminars, lab courses, five times a week, basically from 9am-6pm, which did not include the homework and studying for exams and other tests. Thus, my sports activities became quite “low maintenance”… some handball practice and games here and there.
When I decided to do a Ph.D. after graduating, I also decided to become more active again, joined a handball team in a higher league and great practice. At that point, I was quite slim, in the months before during exams and preparing for getting my professional pharmacist license. I felt like, when I don’t have time to workout, I should at least eat less. I weighed 61kg at 175cm; I was not skinny, but my body was weak. The new handball team and the good preseason practice brought me back on track. I gained 9 kg, basically muscles without looking “big”.
It was early in 2012, still the first season with the new time, when I started having problems breathing. I woke up every morning feeling like, I did not have enough air to breathe, ready to pass out again, but coughing kept me from that. I was wondering if I developed some kind of pulmonary disease or asthma, but all lung function tests etc. showed that everything is fine. At some point, the breathing issues affected my performance so much that I was gasping for air after a few sprints during practice, and I experiences terrible headaches in particular in the mornings.
I went to see a specialist for Otorhinolaryngology. She had a look in particular at (in) my nose and noticed that my airways and the sinuses were very tight and covered with swollen mucosa. We started to treat the swollen nasal tissue with different drugs, such as cortisone nasal sprays. After all, this did not help, she sent me for computer tomography, so we can get a better understand of what is going on there in my nose and sinuses. It turned out that the cave openings were so tight that it was hard for any secret to come out in a natural way. Thus, what happened: over night everything that was gathered there flew into my lungs when I was lying flat in my bed, what caused the coughing.
In summer 2012, I finally had a surgery. The doctor not only fixed the airway issues, but also corrected the septum since my nose looked like I “had it broken several times from the inside” as she said (probably because of random hits during handball that never resulted in an actual broken nose). I spent three days in the hospital and then almost two months at home for recovery. I had to take a lot of cortisone to avoid the reswelling of the tissue, and the corrected septum was still fragile, so no sports, in particular handball…
The breathing capacity immediately became better shortly after the surgery, but my whole body system was down. After the surgery, I had to go to the doctor’s office to “clean up” my nose on a regular base. During one appointment I almost passed out and the tissue in my nose was still not looking like it was getting better. I had to come in daily for antibiotic and rehydration infusions.
Step by step it got better, but my body was nothing but in a good shape anymore. I started practicing handball eventually in October and joined the second team of the club since I would not have been able to catch up with my old team after the new season already started. The team gave me a very warm welcome, and even if I could not come to practice as often as I wanted (I still had this Ph.D. thesis to work on…), they liked having me around. In December and then January 2013, I even got to play in the season. But always when things get better, something new comes up. I basically haven’t done any regular sports activities for a year, my old-growing body 😉 came up with some new challenges. Yes, I started to feel old (hips don’t lie…) I had unspecific pain in my hips, sometimes in my knees and my feet. It was basically just my unfit body rebelling. Eventually stabilizing insoles for my shoes improved the situation. Anyway, I was devastated… again problems. Besides some personal things I decided to quit handball and leave the club – only focusing on my Ph.D. thesis.
But I was not ready to settle 😉 In summer 2013, I joined a handball club, which was located close to the university and I was determined to give it another shot! I started practicing again, sometimes it hurt, sometimes it did not, but I neglected one thing… I had to start finalizing my Ph.D. thesis I was already working on for three years by then. So I sat down on my ass and I wrote and wrote and wrote and wrote… until I could literally not sit anymore. It started with a slight pain in the right hip, ended with me not being able to bend my legs or sit at all… I literally sat my ass flat, sitting in front of my computer, some days for 10 hours straight. They sent me for MRT because the doctors suspected a disc prolapse– but I was lucky, I only managed to get myself a major inflammation at my spinal cords lower end (lumbar hematoma). Thus, I had to interrupt my writing flow and lay around for a few weeks equipped with anti-inflammatories and painkillers – jay… not.
After Christmas 2013, the back was better, the thesis ready to submit, and I was able to go to practice and play handball. Unfortunately, in the second or third game at the beginning of 2014, I almost broke my right foot, when a player from the other team kicked against it, while I was just about to jump. I had to walk with aids for several weeks, and I never played again that season.
I focused on my thesis defense, which went quite well. At that time I was working for a company, did some research projects at the university, and worked night and weekend shifts in a community pharmacy. Besides, going to handball practice from time to time, I deleted all types of sport activities from my schedule. It was too frustrating and my body got used to the workaholic yet couch potato life. I reached my peak weight of 80kg in December 2015, I was unhappy and it was time for a change. But I did not know how and when to start. Then came the job offer from Finland…