Thursday, January 22, 2009

Hard Work

Now the real work begins. I tell my right leg to move and it just lies there looking at me. Today at PT they gave me a thing to loop around my foot so I can pick it up and move it.

The day after surgery they have you get up, walk as far as you can go with a walker, and then sit in a chair.

Every so often somebody makes your recite the big 3 precautions, as if they were a catechism:

-- Thou shalt not cross thy legs or feet.
-- Thou shalt not bend to more than a 90 degree angle.
-- Thou shalt not twist at the hip.

And what happens if you forget? You dislocate your brand new hip and return to GO without collecting any money. In fact you pay a big price.

So with the terror of a dislocation hanging over my head, I went to PT and OT today to the “gym” where they taught me how to use crutches, climb stairs, put my socks on with a reacher thing, and get into a bathtub.

It was slightly overwhelming, but I could pride myself on the fact that I was doing better than anyone else in the gym, probably because they were not native English speakers.

I still immediately tense up when someone says to put weight on my right leg. I can’t tell if it’s because it really hurts so much, or I am still so fearful.

As for the incision, it’s about 4 inches long and neatly held together with staples. The first dressing removal seems to have taken some skin with it.

Today all the tubes came out, so that means I have to get out of bed any time I need to go to the bathroom. My greatest triumph today was doing that all by myself. Baby steps it is, just baby steps.

Everyone says the secret to a full recovery is PT, so I determined to work hard, even when it hurts. I can’t let those muscles atrophy while I am waiting for the pain to subside. In truth, my new titanium hip is probably the strongest part of my body right now. I just have to convince all the other parts to cooperate with it.


Blogger e said...

Hi Barbara,

You are doing well! Incisions are always nasty at first, but then they heal and you have a brief reminder and can look back and have a sense of having lived through something you once believed impossible.

Nice walker, but that loo?? The kind I have doesn't wobble or take up as much space in the bathroom. You may like the elevated loo permanently--not so much pressure and easier to get up and down.

Just keep saying to yourself, "I can do this."

Jacob meows his hello.

I wish we could do more!

8:56 PM  
Blogger Squirrel said...

You're an inspiration, I quickly uncrossed my legs as I read this. I would be chanting the shall nots all day long. I wish i could bring you a delicious vegan dinner. Much Love,

10:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Barbara, you are clearly going to recuperate as well as is humanly possible! You have smarts, determination, information, support, good health, a great attitude, humor, and lots of people who love you rooting for you!

Wish I could come in and play some music for you. :-)

Tried to call today (Thurs.) but didn't get an answer, so will try tomorrow. Hope you sleep well!


-- F.

10:41 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

E -- I need a "loo" as close to the bed as possible for now. I will eventually graduate to the kind that fits on top of a standard toilet.

I'll remember your advice tomorrow as the next chapter of PT unfolds.

Squirrel -- A delicious vegan dinner sounds like a great idea. I had chicken soup that I had made last week and that my husband had brought in tonight. It reminded me that food can taste good.

Anon F -- I must have been out to therapy when you called. I'm so sorry to have missed your call.

Could you play me a lullaby right now so I can go to sleep? I seem to have insomnia and constipation in addition to a newly acquired titanium hip.

11:47 PM  
Blogger Fire Byrd said...

I think your right... baby steps are it!
You'll look back next weekend and wonder why it was all so much trouble this weekend, and then the weekend after.....

3:48 AM  
Blogger bulletholes said...

Are you Bionic now?

9:25 AM  
Blogger Kristin said...

Best wishes, Barbara! The road to recovery seems one straight up hill, but if anyone can do it (and every day, people do), I'm sure you can and will. You've got moxie.

9:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

(First comment try didn't take)...Ya got it; I'm improvising something slow and 6/8-ish in D major. Store it in your I-pod and play it when you need it.



7:26 PM  
Blogger mouse (aka kimy) said...

this will teach me to fall behind reading the blogs of friends!! oh my!

I'm sorry your falling karma ran out.... how awful, but as my 84 yr old mom said after I just ran down to tell her you had fallen and broken your hip - 'she's young she'll recover'

geez, had I not been lax, I actually would have seen you yesterday as I went to visit my friend who is at whc who had surgery on thursday to remove a brain tumor.

I almost called you yesterday morning while I was heading out to see if you wanted to hit the museums with me before I did go visit dp - but nixed it thinking - well, that would be rude last minute....but last minute is kind of how my trip down here has been with all the inauguration excitement, etc.

sending healing, mending vibes your way....I'll give you a ring in a few.


10:34 AM  

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