Sunday, August 1, 2010

Stayin' Alive!

Still alive, and working on the kicking part! This has not been at all easy. My body has demonstrated some quirks after surgery that only happen in about 10% of people who have major surgery, and I've had to go in for weekly blood tests because of it. Hopefully tomorrow's blood draw will show improvement. I need to get off of a couple more medications, and maybe then I will be able to begin to get back to normal activities.

As for the knee, the people at Physical Therapy are very pleased with my progress. I'm having a hard time being patient enough to realize that my knee is getting better. It is very, very stiff, I don't have anywhere near normal range of motion yet, and walking normally takes a huge amount of concentration and it is certainly NOT pain free. I've been told that by 4 weeks I would be so glad I'd had this surgery, but those thoughts have not entered my mind yet. Nights tend to be long and I cannot get very comfortable. It takes a lot of Tylenol PM and ice packs to get me through.

Any of you have more experience with this than me? I'd like to know how long it took before you started feeling strong again. I'm waiting for that moment. In the meantime, my attitude seems to go downhill rapidly if I don't feel like I am making daily progress. I really have to work on that. I am going to try to start up the bread machine this afternoon. The aroma of fresh baked bread has to perk me up a bit, don't you think?

The weather here has been fiercely hot, with 105 degrees (Fahrenheit for my foreign readers) expected tomorrow. I cannot get outside now, even if I felt like it due to the overwhelming heat. So I'm looking forward to September, being finished with the book manuscript, cooler weather, ability to walk unaided and comfortably, and to the birth of our first grandson who is due to arrive sometime around the end of September.


  1. Can't help with the knee thing, but waiting for relief is NOT fun. I have my own version - wanting pinched nerves to get better with chiro. treatment - avoiding surgery, but like you, I'm impatient and want it better NOW! Pain, no sleep is not helping is it? (add some hot flashes to that mix!) And that danged life-clock is still ticking away, always at the back of our minds, but if P.T. says you are making progress, then you ARE - stay strong, keep busy, and follow orders. That's the best I can offer. 8-)))

  2. Elsie, I sent you an email but also want to let you know that you are not alone. Every night I woke up after 3 1/2 - 4 hours, went to my recliner and ate some crackers and took a pain pill. Watched tv for 30 minutes and then back to bed. I did that for about 5 weeks and then one night I made it from 11pm to 6am so that was the end of that routine. I also napped between therapy and passive machine routines. Managed to get about 12 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period but never for more than 2-3 hours at a time! Sleep and having no pain is essential for a good recovery. Nausea and high blood pressure were a problem but they went away after the pain pills were gone!

    Keep exercising and icing after!
    Karen in Tucson

  3. I'm 5 weeks post-op and am walking without assistance, climbing stairs, and feeling pretty good now. Got rid of all the pills, and the hemoglobin came up and the platelet count went down, and things are settling down a bit. Getting to sleep is easy, staying asleep for more than 3 hours at a time, not so much. Thanks to all of you for your concern and prayers

  4. So glad to hear you are finally improving. Sleeping for longer than 4 hours is always a problem.

    I tried sending you a private email but it just came back. Guess you need to check your email address on your personal profile.

  5. Sorry, Karen. There's always my website: I think you can get a message to me that way.

    My e-mail:

    I think I had to use a g-mail address to establish this blog with google, but I rarely use it.

  6. I'm happy to hear that you are recovering so well. And walking without assistance and up stairs at 5 weeks is great! And in such a short time (though it may not seem like it to you!)

    I had another post-op appointment with my knee surgeon and he has given my the okay for knee-replacement surgery (I'm at 5 weeks). I told him that I'm not ready for total knee-replacement surgery right now, not with 2 young boys. Maybe in the future, when the pain becomes too much and difficult, I may reconsider.

    I hope you post more on your recovery. I'll read each post diligently. Seeing you do so well makes me less apprehensive about mine.

  7. Jane, at 6 weeks, for some reason my knee finally decided to swell. For the first time, I'm having to back off on my activities and ice and elevate. I have gone out for walks 3 or 4 times. Thursday I put in a mile, and I think I wasn't ready for that. I still cannot straighten my knee fully, but I can manage. It is NOT pain free, any of it. I am now told it may be 6 months to a year for me to be pain free, and I may never be able to fully straighten my knee again. Not what you wanted to hear, I'm sure. Still working very hard in physical therapy, and am planning to take my first road trip and judge and teach at a large venue in 4 weeks. Here's hoping the knee will be settled down and feeling better by then. Good luck to you. I think the younger and more active you are, the quicker the recovery. I'm not young, and I haven't been very active for twenty years.