Saturday, June 6, 2015

Another chapter closed - Saskpro CrossFit has a new owner!

This week was a big week for Evan - he handed over the keys to Saskpro CrossFit, the business that he created 6 years ago.

When we made the decision to move to Grand Cayman, Ev's intention was to continue to run Saskpro, commuting every few months to ensure things were running smoothly. At Christmastime, it was apparent to Ev that this was not going to work. Evan was definitely in a tough spot, wanting to spend time with his dad during his last days, and feeling the guilt of not being present at the gym as much as he had intended. He told me in December that he knew in his heart that he needed to sell the gym if we were going to continue living on the island. That's when the dialogue began.

As luck would have it, the perfect buyers came along! Scott and Shelli Gardiner - an inspirational couple and loyal Saskpro members -  have purchased the gym. Evan and I couldn't be happier. Scott and Shelli have an amazing story to share - I couldn't do it justice in a blog post, but I will say that Shelli suffered a stroke in 2007 which left her with paralysis on one side. She and Evan worked together for years at Saskpro, and as a team, they accomplished great things - including a fabulous new cane-less gait, hey Shell? Scott and Shelli have battled through big-time adversity and Evan and I certainly look to them for inspiration when we're fighting our own little battles with my knees. Evan and I just know that they will be fabulous ambassadors of the gym and will inspire everyone who walks through Saskpro's doors. Congratulations Scott and Shelli. We know you will put your heart and soul into it.

I really view this event as something to be celebrated. It's a true success story: Evan created this gym from nothing. It all actually began as a hockey conditioning centre converted out of an office building. Evan's dad, Jerry, drove in from Alberta for 2 weeks to help with the construction. Ev and his dad worked long, hard days and I know those memories of working so closely with his dad and having his dad's unconditional support are so precious to Ev. With the help of family and friends, we converted an office building into a skating treadmill paradise! Six years later, after changing locations 3 times, completely changing the vision of the business, and selling one very expensive skating treadmill, it has become something amazing. It became a community - a place where people go to work hard, feel great, and meet like-minded people. Some people think that Ev just got lucky. Not at all. The first 2-3 years were insane. I vividly remember Evan's 90 hour work weeks, the late late nights, the tears (mine…and maybe his too at times), and the books - Oh man, Evan must have read 450 business and fitness books! He worked his ass off. There were many times when the business wasn't "working" - Evan never gave up - he would read another book, consult with a business coaching company, and make changes until it began "working" again. The gym began with less than a dozen members and it has expanded to serve over 200 members! I am so proud of him. I am incredibly grateful to those who have supported us in this decision by sending us messages, stopping in to say "hi", asking how I am doing after surgery, and congratulating Evan on a job well done. I hope that once the dust clears and Ev can breathe a big sigh of relief, Evan and I will properly pop a bottle of champagne and toast the end of an amazing chapter! What a wild ride - life is just full of these wild rides - you just never know what direction your life will take.
Kayla and Ev hang the first sign
Evan and Jerry after a long day of work

Stop for a snack - those green walls HAVE to go!

As far as my recovery goes, I have nothing exciting to report. It's slow. It's painful. I'm not very mobile, given the flare up on my "good" knee. My mood is…well, kinda low. Luckily Dr. M gave me a gentle kick in my ass (wait! I don't have an ass anymore, let's call it a flass, shall we?) Dr. M let me cry for a bit and then sternly told me that it was time to fight. I need to cut back on the painkillers (AKA not be sooo high), I need to start eating (everything tastes like fish, for some reason), and I need to do bed exercises - leg lifts, raises, quad squeezes, etc. Ok Fine. I can do that. I'm trying. I've been through this before, you'd think I'd be awesome at it…but it's tougher this time around. I feel disappointed that I'm right back to a place I swore I'd never be again. I can't help but flash back to 2 years ago - again, I am 20 pounds under weight, high on pills, and immobile. ugh. Sometimes it feels like I'm in a dark hole -  Dr. M threw me a rope - some days I climb the rope (slowly) and some days I just hang on. But I won't let go. June 29 is the day that I will be cleared (hopefully) to begin weight bearing on my surgery knee. I vividly remember that stage from my last transplant. It's painful and difficult, but I recall the pride I felt when I began "learning" how to walk again, after months of moving very little.  My goal is to be as strong as I can be (even if I can only do bed exercises!) so that I'm ready to face my new challenge- the next stage of recovery - at the end of June. Sometimes I feel like screaming, "Enough with the challenges! Haven't I been challenged enough?"

In the meantime, Ev's been trying to keep me comfortable when I come home for a "home visit" (I'm still living at my mom's most of the time). A few nights ago, I complained about the knots in my back, hips, and neck, from being so sedentary. Thoughtfully, Ev came to bed one night with massage oil and offered me a lovely back massage. Yes! Thank you! This is what I need! He began working out a horrible knot in my shoulder. It was amazing! Just as he was really getting to the core of the knot, his speed slowed….and then stopped. I turned around to see that he had fallen asleep on my back - mid-massage. The next day I told him that was the first time he had ever disappointed me in bed! haha. The thought was there, but I'd have to give that one an epic fail! I'm hoping to recoup the other 3/4 of that massage on another date - perhaps during the day when there's less chance of massage narcolepsy.

Cheers to a happy weekend!

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