#1 - Surviving FYF

Last month, three days before I was set to shoot FYF Fest, the music festival I’d been looking forward to all year, I injured myself in spin class. It wasn’t your typical limping because everything’s sore situation. It was more of a I’ve got big lumps of something in both legs and I can’t bend and everything hurts like fuck type of deal. And when two days in, I ended up *WARNING: KIND OF GROSS* peeing some blood, I knew exactly what I had - rhabdomyolysis.

Full disclosure: I’m not a very active person. I walk a lot and run sporadically, but I don’t have a regular work out routine. So straight from work last month, in an effort to get in shape before a big trip, I went to my first spin class in an awesome studio in Venice. I informed the receptionist that it was my first time and she informed the instructor. Still, no one told me that I shouldn’t try to keep up with the class! I  tried my best to do everything in the same pace and I was so proud of myself for being able to do so. Then the class ended and as I got up from my bike, I fell to the floor because I could barely stand. I walked a mile from the apartment to the studio intending it to be my warm up and the walk back home as my cool down. Instead, I got a Lyft and couldn’t even walk properly to my car. "Just one sec! I’m almost there,” I yelled to the driver from about twenty feet away. It was pathetic.

I ended up bedridden two days after the class, only painfully standing up to go to the bathroom or eat something. I got food delivery for lunch and because of some sort of miracle, the delivery guy brought the food straight to our apartment door instead of the gate downstairs, which was ALWAYS the case before then. I swear, when things like that happen, I just can’t help thinking there’s some sort of supernatural force looking after me. He saved me one heck of a painful and not to mention time consuming staircase traversing on the worst day of my injury.

On the first day of FYF, I pushed myself to my limit unlike ever before. I was almost running from stage to stage, trying to catch all the bands I wanted to shoot. The layout was spread out so much that it took me at least 15-20 minutes of limping to reach the two stages farthest from each other. It was pure agony.

Sam Herring understood my pain.

A photographer friend of mine watched from the top of the stairs at the arena as I climbed up step by step and burst out laughing. On a normal day, I would be more than happy to oblige his sense of humor, but on that particularly difficult afternoon of just trying to survive the festival without making my injury worse, I was pretty tempted to hurt his face. "Dude, it fucking hurts, okay?" I told him. He laughed some more. I deserved it, I guess.

Allow me to compliment myself, but wow, I still can’t believe I managed that first day with that much pain. Of course, like I stated before, I owed much of it to my amazing boyfriend/partner/cheerleader Tony who did not complain once. He was instead always looking out for me and checking if my stupid legs were doing okay.

What a guy. <3

The morning after, I woke up afraid I’d made things worse. Imagine my surprise when my legs were fine and even bending a little bit! I still limped a tiny bit, but it wasn’t as noticeable as before anymore.

In the end, I shot less than most of my peers, but I did make it to every set that I really, really wanted to. I am so thankful for my legs now. I never did appreciate them much and now that they’re back in full working condition, I am determined to never find myself in that position again. I’ve taken up running instead. Spinning can go to hell.

I have another music festival coming up, a three-day one in Las Vegas, and I’m excited to just be able to actually run from stage to stage. I love you, legs. Let’s never go through that again.

Anonymous: How much do you charge for your photography services (headshots, weddings, etc.)? :)

Very affordable! Email me. :)


Asa in Sufjan’s car.