Thursday, July 28, 2011
I was up in the mountains again yesterday morning and then last night Harley and I tried out some full face dive masks in the pool at a Seattle dive shop with wonderful instructor Dominic. As evidenced in a couple photos from June when we stopped by one of the shops to try a mask on, I was equally as pleased with the mask under the water. It rocked and I did not want to come up! :D
The reason for giving the full face mask a test drive is not due to eagerness to have a new (AND EXPENSIVE toy). With most of my face now paralyzed, the ability to hold and keep a regulator in my mouth underwater is a big issue. As it was when we took a dive a couple weeks before my surgery, the partial paralysis on the right side of my face caused me to blow the regulator out of my mouth ever so often especially when turning my head one direction. No biggie as I am pretty comfortable under the water and have many dives under my belt over several years. What I noticed is that I really depended on the fully functioning left side of my face to bite down and use the facial muscles to keep the reg in my mouth.
Now however, the left side barely moves and I have recently noticed a major loss of muscle tone in both the cheek and chin. I cannot even keep my mouth closed to eat so how on earth will it work to keep a regulator in and water out???? Hence Harley came up with the idea of seeing if a full face mask could work. When they first became available years ago I was not too eager to ever get one for fear of it flooding but I absolutely loved it! So we will see what we can do when the winter comes around. For now I can keep myself plenty occupied by training for the Portland Marathon which will be October 9th and fully taking advantage of hike season.
As part of my visit in Oregon, I enjoyed a nice day on Mt. Hood Sunday hiking with my dad. I just got back to Seattle Tuesday night via the amtrak train. For years (since 2007), I have admired the mountain from the hospital after every surgery. Finally I had the opportunity to go there and set foot on the mountain which has beckoned me. Here are a couple photos from our Mt. Hood adventure