I spent the first two weeks in institutions -- first a large teaching hospital, then a small-town nursing home -- where I had no choice but to give up all control over my body and my time. More recently, husband Dave has been pinch-hitting as chief nurse, cook and picker upper. Thanks, everyone for all you’ve done for me!
And, thanks to those of you who called or wrote to cheer me through this ordeal. And, it has been an ordeal. A few untoward events occurred during surgery that I won’t go into here, however they convinced me to wait a few weeks (or months) before I go under the knife again. I’m looking at April or May for hip replacement #2.
A long prosthesis in my left leg has put me a little closer to the clouds on the west side. The surgeon promises to remedy this asymmetry when he installs its mate on the right.
At this point, most of my heavy-duty meds are history and most of my days are spent in physical therapy or on the couch. As of yesterday, we retired the walker for a copper cane as main upright support. When I squint, I can see a time in the not-so-distant future when I’ll walk unattended, again.
By all accounts, my 10 inches of my wound are sight to behold, vitals are perfect and prognosis is excellent. All I have to do is keep on keeping on, as my West Virginia grandmother used to say.
All this hoopla comes with a price of course. Some of it I knew going in; some I didn’t.
For example, my surgeon is very strict on hip precautions. He says I can never again:
·cross my feet or legs
·touch my toes, tie my shoelaces, trim my own nails, etc.
·twist and shout, or not shout
·soak in a bubble bath
·reduce the angle between my upper and lower halfs to less than 90 degrees.
Not sure if this knocks me out of kayaking, sidestroke swimming, many Nautilus machines or Pilates moves, but will find out.
It’s not that I’ve lost my ability to do these things, but the surgeon warns the prosthesis could fail. If so, he’d have to replace the thing through yet a third surgery, and I say no way, Jose.
So, while I mourn the fact that I’ll never again pick up a grandchild off the floor, bend over to pat a cat or do stomach crunches in aquatic exercise class, I’m changing my ways one move at a time. If you want to help, please pat lots of cats, pick up little kids and do many, many crunches for me!