Continuing to Improve

Percocet has such a funny effect on me as I start to get more used to it.

It definitely eases the ache in my entire body — which, if you’ve been paying attention, has gotten pretty bad. In terms of my energy, it peps me up bigtime for the first hour and a half — I have tons of energy and get super talkative (just ask Mark or my friends at work). But then, after that — at least, at night– it totally knocks me out and my eyes start to close on their own. It’s so weird! It’s kind of like having a really intense sugar high and crash.

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Fortunately, it’s stopped making me itch too much. There’s still a little bit of a side effect, but I’ve stopped noticing it for the most part. I’m just happy to have something relieve the pain.

I had my post-op with the surgeon this morning. All this time, I’ve been saying that I never saw the surgeon after my surgery. This morning, he told me that he and I had an entire conversation once I awoke from the anesthesia in which he told me all about how the surgery went.  He also told me that he wasn’t at all surprised that I didn’t remember it. Isn’t that insane? I had a whole conversation about which I remember NOTHING! That is so weird to me.

Anyway, he told me (again, I guess!) today me that my surgery went really well and that I’m doing really well now. My surgery was a lateral menisectomy in which they shaved off part of my meniscus and re-sculpted what was left. Basically, I had something called a discois meniscus, which looked like an O. A normal meniscus is supposed to look like a C. In the surgery, the doctor re-shaped my meniscus to make it look like a C, so I now have a normal meniscus. Or, anyway, I’ll have one when everything heals.

Speaking of healing, I should be fully recovered in about eight weeks. That’s a bit longer than I had been hoping for, but it is what it is.

On the bright side, though, I got to rid myself of that heavy brace today, once and for all! Hooray!

Look, Ma, no brace!

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It is such an amazing feeling. I can’t even put it into words.

Furthermore, I should be able to walk with just one crutch in a couple of days and NO crutches in about a week! I can’t wait!

Meanwhile, I’m already able to put a little bit of weight on the leg. Check it:

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Of course, I can only go crutch-free like that when I’m standing still. When I’m walking, I’m focusing on going really slowly and putting weight on the weak leg while supporting myself with the crutches.

I’m very grateful to see the phasing out of the crutches because my arms, shoulders, chest and back are still killing me.

In case you’re interested in how teensy-tiny the incisions were, I took a picture for you. I blurred it slightly so that you won’t see my hairy knee in case you get squeamish.

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Anyway, I’ve been keeping myself busy, healing and consistently improving by continuing to ice, do my PT exercises (four times a day!), bandaging, elevating and attempting to rest.

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(Those are two ice packs — one underneath my knee and one on top.)

It’s just wonderful to see that I keep getting better each day. And, since I decided “not to be a hero” (my mom’s words) today, I’m doing a lot better tonight. I made sure to only get up and walk on the crutches when I actually needed to. I asked for a wheelchair at the doctor’s office (the path from the lobby to the office is SO LONG and exhausts me on crutches), which hurt my pride but conserved a ton of my energy. I also let my friends/ co-workers help me at work, rather than trying to be brave and do everything myself. It made SO MUCH of a difference in my energy at the end of the day! All of this is also saving my muscles and allowing the bruise on my side to avoid irritation.

Have you ever walked on crutches before? Any tips?

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5 Comments

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5 responses to “Continuing to Improve

  1. In my experience needing help is 100% the worst part of recovering from surgery. I had this weird, ‘I can do it’ mentality when honestly, I couldn’t do certain things. Glad you’ve discovered the benefits of asking for help early on in your recovery.

    Looking good!

  2. Glad you’redoing better, crutches are the worst! I know that when I had to use them my armpits were constantly hurting so I wrapped towels around the top for more padding, and on the handles too for my palms. Helped a little at least…since I was using them to get across campus in high school!

  3. After my Hip reconstruction surgery I used to have crutches when in the Service (Infantry, US Army) and I found that padding the tops and hand rails are key–you’ll bruise a lot if you do much because of the poor padding that they come with. They make crutches that clasp at the forearm and handrails to hold that I hear they are really a lot more comfortable than the usual ones that go in the armpit.

  4. So glad to hear you are recovering so well! No need to be a hero, take the help while you need it and pay it back when you are all better 🙂

  5. Glad to hear things are doing better and you are healing well!

    We always wrapped the top of our crutches in hand towels and tape for extra cush.

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