Out of Office...

I'm taking this week off since I had my hip all fixed up yesterday and am in no condition to apply eyeliner - you can read about my journey here.  There will be a Friday Flash this week with a a very pretty (and very simple) Valentine's makeup tutorial, and I'm back next week to show you how to get the most out of those eye shadow palettes you never use.  Don't forget to keep in touch @ElectraLane on your favorite social media site!  Cheers - JY In the meantime, please enjoy this stunning video by Melissa Alatorre:



Since this is a makeup/skincare blog, one might assume this post is about cosmetic surgery.  It's not.  I'm sharing this because, even though it's is far too much oversharing for me, my chiropractor encouraged me to do so.  I truly hope you get something out of this, whether it's to become your own best advocate, to keep fighting even when things are nearly unbearable, or simply to remember to take care of you. I danced for 17 years, but stopped due to what doctors told me were some herniated discs and general wear-and-tear.  I was told the debilitating symptoms should disappear if I picked up another activity.  You must understand that at that point, I was having take-your-breath-away back spasms, in physical therapy twice a week, and on my way to an amazing college dance program on scholarship.  To stop dancing cold turkey was completely devastating and, though I continue to give myself ballet classes, I miss it greatly every day.

My constant buddy - a giant ice pack on my hip

Fast forward a few years later.  I'm married and have started running.  Though it took a while just to run a mile, I eventually was up to 20 miles a week and was beginning to feel a bit of the freedom and endorphin rush I experienced while dancing.  Only one problem - what I thought was just shin splints began forming into an unusual, searing pain, so I did the whole rest/ice cycle for a while.

Eventually, it got to the point where I couldn't walk without a limp, so I reluctantly headed to the doctor.  Even though I expressed that there were several symptoms beyond what was happening below the knee, I was sent to a podiatrist. When he couldn't help, and two rounds of physical therapy actually made things worse, I headed back to my primary physician as I believed the pain was coming from my hip/lower back and ending up in my foot.  He dismissed me as having "lady troubles."  I switched to a female physician, but she said I must be nuts and threatened to put me on anti-psychotics. Big mistake here - I should have gone straight to a specialist.  Hindsight...

Puppy snuggles make icing the hip much better :)

Thankfully, I met with a specialist and, after X-rays and tests with giant needles, this Harvard-trained orthopedic surgeon told me I had exertional compartment syndrome and was in danger of losing my left leg below the knee.  While the validation was great, that wasn't exactly what I had expected to hear.  The problem with compartment syndrome is that the surgery has only about a 50% chance of a full recovery, so we wanted to try to avoid that by exploring other options first.

Now, a year and a half later, I've been seeing a chiropractor who has literally put the broken pieces of my body back together using Active Release Therapy (or ART).  We were able to avoid  surgery for the compartment syndrome and, after working out all the wonky issues, we realized that a structural imbalance was causing the comaprtment syndrome.  My doc pinpointed the pain to my hip and suggested an MRI for a possible labrum tear.  I have two.  And serious impingement issues that have caused me to walk (and dance and run) out of balance for years.  Bingo.

Electrostem at Dr. Don's

So in a few days, I'm having hip surgery.  And the prognosis is really, really good.

This whole process has spanned over four years.  It has been a constant battle, obviously physically because the pain has been so bad I see stars, but also mentally.  Additionally, at the beginning of this journey, they told me to completely stop working out (for the first time in my life...even yoga was too much) until we figured out what was going on.  I did not adjust my diet, so I gained 30 pounds.  Part of it was my fault as there was a lot of emotional eating, but that pushed me to learn everything I could about how our bodies use food. I'm proud to say that I've dropped about 20lbs just by (dramatically) changing my diet.  I'll share more about that at a later time.

The SWEET shower bench I'll need post-op

Again, the point of all this is to encourage you to be your own best advocate, as well as to educate yourself as much as you can about your health, your job, or whatever else your life touches.  If something isn't right, and you know it in your gut, fight to figure it out.

This journey is far from over, but it has been so humbling to this point.  I've learned the true meaning of gratitude, and I've become a more compassionate person.  I'd like to say that I could have learned these imperative lessons without becoming heartbroken, overweight, hopeless, frustrated, or experiencing a whole host of negative emotions, but I don't think I can.  It's like building muscle - when we work out, we break down our muscles so the body can repair them to make them stronger.  Everyone in life faces these "break down" moments - the ones who just survive it stay the same, while those who push through the tough stuff come out stronger.  To put it another way, I've heard the saying, "you can get bitter, or you can get better."


promise this isn't turning into a play-by-play of my surgery and recovery! I'm taking next week off, but I have some great posts to follow that are all about makeup.  There will be plenty of updates on Facebook/Instagram/Snapchat/Periscope if you'd like to follow along.  Until next time...cheers!



{Featured image from somewhere on Instagram that I screenshot. No copyright infringement intended}