Tuesday, August 7, 2012

9 Weeks Post-Op

I'm 9 weeks post-op and I've made so much progress. That being said, I'm still slow and dependent on help from others. When I first arrived home, I needed help doing absolutely everything - dressing myself, washing myself, brushing and fixing my hair, reaching things, getting food, etc. I'm now able to to do many of these things on my own with a few modifications. I've even learned to dress myself either by using 2 of my long-handled grabbers or by sitting down. I can now put shirts on over my head, instead of having to only wear things that I can step into (week 5 milestone). One of the things I still can't do (and won't be able to do for quite a while) is bend, so I have a difficult time reaching things below waist level. While I have become quite good at picking things up with my toes, there are some situations where toes are inappropriate or just won't work. Typically, this is where my grabbers come in handy, but I've learned that my grabber can actually get me into trouble. While trying to pick up a soda can with one of my grabbers (yes, I have 3) I somehow managed to puncture one of the cans. It began spraying me and my kitchen, and while I was able to rotate the can away from me, there was little else I could do other than yell for help. Luckily, my Mom found the situation amusing and cleaned it up for me, but only after making fun of me. I've learned that even though I can do things on my own, it's often easier and more efficient to just ask for help.

I've gotten much more confident in my movement and feel comfortable moving around the house, though I won't be winning any races anytime soon. Somewhere around week 6, the feeling that I was going to break with any movement began to dissipate. My back is still very sore, but it's a good kind pain because it's a healing pain. The not-so-good part is that I also have nerve damage in my right thigh that is likely the result of lying face-down for 7.5 hours. My doctor said that this isn't that uncommon and that I should gradually regain all feeling. I really hope this improves because it's enough to keep me awake at night. Even still, it's a small price to pay.

I'm unable to be upright for long periods of time because my back gets very tired and my muscles start to burn. So, I am still spending a lot of time horizontal. I've learned to do a lot on my own, but it will still be quite a while before I'm completely independent. I already feel so much better than I did before surgery, so I think the worst is over. I couldn't be happier with the decision to have surgery (though I'm not sure I really had much of a choice) or the surgeon I chose. I'm so lucky to have my friends and family, because there is no way I could have done this without their help. The support I've gotten from everyone has really helped me through this.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Jill,

    I am now 6 months post-op and when I read your post, it really brought back all the memories on the restricted movements and activities after the operation - not that I will forget all these but you really hit it on the spot. I went through all those.

    I am feeling great now, although I do get tired more easily than before the surgery. I have just gone for my 6 months post-op checkup. Doctor said the bones are fusing nicely. Just need to continue to look after my posture and no jerky movements.

    Take care and all the best to you!