One step at a time…

July 27, 2009

Saturday was my first big day out post-op and all went well.   A lovely sunny day at a friends wedding and muchos hobbling and merriment was had. The operated leg didn’t exactly behave itself in spite of the fact that lots of people were looking out for me and it; because I wasn’t wearing the super sexy TED stockings (a pre checked day off from orthapedic nurse!) my entire leg swelled up not the usual down to my knee, which was nice.   It had been propped up, rested and hobbled around all day, but nothing made it happy. Thankfully it was only a little uncomfortable and not particularly painful. In-spite of my slight difficulty in moving around all went swimmingly with the leg.  As for the wedding itself it was beautiful and lovely and fun and the happy couple were, well, very happy, ahhhh bless them.

Since it’s long day out my leg has felt bruised, I can only assume it’s my muscles feeling a little battered from the ordeal because no bruises have appeared so far.  On the subject of bruises my stomach has a nice collection going on, to the point that I have developed a little lump in one part of my tummy. It turns out that the anti-coagulants I’m injecting may also be helping me to bruise more easily, nice! 

My man and I ventured out for a little hobble today, found a little footpath that was part concrete/gravel so the wheelchair could be used if needed, and it was.  It’s amazing how tiring it gets hobbling along. Now I wouldn’t say I was at the peak of fitness pre-op but I was certainly no couch potato, so to get tired out so quickly is somewhat frustrating, I reckon I hobbled about 400m and that’s a generous estimate. The other 200m I used the wheelchair in self-propelling mode. I think my steering got a little better on the flat, but as soon as there was a little downhill it all got a bit too much especially as the path was curving to the right at the time, I very nearly ended up in the stinging nettles!  Still that was only my second outing, there’s plenty more time to practice, specially if it enables me to get outside for longer :0)


Early days

July 22, 2009

So since I got home how’s things going? Initially a bit painfully and very sleepily, Saturday afternoon I had to wait for my leg to deflate a little before I could hobble around, and even then I was very unsteady.  Managed the stairs with supervision and sleep was a bit painful. I think after being in a hospital bed that moved where you wanted it too (fancy pants buttons and everything!), it took some time to work out how I needed to sleep in a normal bed comfortably. Anyway I was very tired and in more pain than I had been in hospital, but nothing that couldn’t be solved with tablets.

Sunday I was very sleepy and the hip was still smarting. My lovely fella shopped for and cooked (while I had a 3 hour sleep on the sofa!) a roast dinner for my folks and little Nannie, which was scrummy. Mind you I had a tiny plate of food as my appetite seemed to have disappeared, something that is unknown where roasties and Yorkshire puds are concerned!   After tea more napping ensued and a little unsteady hobbling around, but all in all I was not on form.

Monday things felt a bit better, but the frustration of not being able to carry stuff around started to get to me, no tears, just a little rant to myself every now and again!  The pain was under control, still taking the meds as prescribed and hobbling was speeding up. Managed a one legged supervised shower, the perching stool goes in the shower, but you can’t close the door which isn’t much use unless you want ducks setting up home in the bathroom!  Spent a bit too much time sat up at the table – leg returned to former swollen glory :0(

Tuesday my man was out early and I was left to my own devices for 3 hours. A little bit of stroppiness may have risen it’s ugly head as I tried to get dressed. The grabber dropped to the floor while I was sat on the bed, then in the bathroom the loo roll did a similar thing with no grabber in sight – somehow I managed to use my crutches to lever things around so all was not lost, just took a blooming long time! I then  hobbled downstairs to get brekky. Hmm how do you get cereal from one room to another without spilling it?! Well I decided to go with toast; bread from the freezer transported in mouth to toaster, shuffle to fridge to find jam, jam on sideboard as far as I can reach, hobble a bit, shuffle the jam a bit, hobble a bit, shuffle the jam…. etc until I got level with the toaster.  Get out a knife, can’t be bothered to do the whole shuffle/hobble thing with a plate so spread jam on toast and eat whilst perching on stool.  Not too frustrated after that rigmourol then!  I had managed to find my little rucksack which means I can now transport stuff around the house for myself, although loading and unloading it can be a pain in the butt,  specially if you have a sieve like memory and can’t remember where you unloaded all the gubbins that you collected an hour ago!   The name of the game post op is definitely organisation. Know what you want before you want it and plan how to get it, whether by poor long-suffering boyfriend (who is constantly just about to sit down after making us a cuppa only for me to say, could you get me …..?) or by own transport rucksack stylee. I am not a very organised person, pre op I would frequently run upstairs to get something, find something else to bring down then have to go back up for whatever it is I wanted in the first place. This is not a good scenario when you can only carry what you can fit on your back, and when after a couple of goes up and down the stairs you need a little nap! 

Tuesday; a good nights kip, feeling more like me again and managed to dress fairly quickly without much ranting -HURRAH! A step in the right direction. Also for the first time since the op I can see my right knee cap in it’s knobbly glory!!!  Thigh is a little swollen but a marked improvement.  Still taking pain meds but leaving the gap between them slightly bigger just to see what the score is, nothing having a major grumble so it would seem that I could reduce them a little.  The problem with feeling more like myself is that boredom is now setting in, on day 3 of being at home full time. This does not bode well.   Had a visit from a friend who was really mean and bought scrummy biscuits!  A pretty positive day all round.

Wednesday; had an uncomfortable nights sleep, the compression stockings are far too good at keeping your feet warm, so I got a little overheated. I’ve been told that I have to wear them for the 6 weeks until I go for my check up. (not the same pair you’ll be pleased to hear, I have a spare!). If we ever get a real summer I’ll never get any sleep – overheating from the feet up just isn’t fun!  Had a very exciting excursion today; we’ve hired a wheelchair from the British Red Cross as we’re off to a wedding on Saturday (see CK on blogroll – V excited), and to go the distance figured that a wheelchair and crutch combo is going to be a winner. So for our road test I hobbled out to the path, boyfriend brought out the wheelchair cushioned and ready for action. It was a relatively short journey down the road, but still there was plenty of room for crap steering from yours truly, nearly went off the curb a coupla times, but I did manage to do a full 360 turn when it was time to come back!  I chose to hobble back and expend some of the pent up energy, which worked cos I fell asleep when we got back!   Being sat in a wheelchair is very odd, I felt like a bit of a fraud really, as I can hobble, but not for any length of time yet. We only met a couple of people along the way, but they gave me a puzzled look.  

 I’ve not really taken many pain meds at all today, only one lot of parcetamol and ibruprofen, and one lot of the morphine based painkillers, pretty darn good considering it’s now half eight at night.  Maybe it’s time to start properly weaning myself off them, I’m just not sure of the best way to go about it. Do I quit the nasty morphine ones altogether and rely on normal painkillers, or do I only take a couple of doses of each?

Well I’ve waffled another significant amount – that’s what being left on your own for a couple of hours does to you! I think a day by day account might be a little over indulgent so I’ll calm it down now. Also with my new found energy I’ll hopefully get to play outside a bit more.


What’ll happen to the summer?

April 3, 2009

 The university have been nothing short of brilliant and cancelled my suspension of studies, so I can go back to lectures. Also if the date offered by the Hospital fits in, I will finish my course and be a qualified teacher – WHOOO HOOOOO it was going to be December before that happened.

Yesterday I got a new date for the op, the first one offered was 15th June, which is only 3 weeks before the end of my course, so I requested to postpone it again. This means I will at least get my course finished, even if I’m not well enough to get a job in September, there’s a chance of supply teaching once I’m recovered. 

The new date is now the 13th July which is depressing.   I’ll be spending my summer not able to do stuff – friends BBQs, a holiday surfing/biking/walking, DIY in the house (strange but my boyfriend and I work well together and our house needs some attention to say the least), sorting out the garden…. and worst of all some of our good friends are getting married. What are the chances of me being able to go to weddings; one 2 weeks after the op, the other 3 weeks after? maybe a wheelchair will be the answer (UURRRRRGHHHHH).  HURUMPH! just about sums it up at the moment.   Admittedly there are a few things I can now go to over the next few months which I wouldn’t have been able to do, and I suppose I can enjoy any sunshine we do get in the summer by recovering outside… but it just ain’t cricket.  I feel the need for a list; a list of the things we can do to enjoy our summer…. any ideas anyone?