Knee Surgery Recovery - The Small Stuff

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Have you had knee surgery, know someone who has had knee surgery, or know of someone who is about to go through knee surgery? I underwent knee surgery recently and it has been so much more than a life changing experience. The Surgeon, his Assistant, many of my friends, co-workers and even total strangers gave me lots of advice and prepared me for what was about to come. I pretty much figured I'd be healed in no time and back dancing in just a few weeks. I was excited about knowing in just a few short weeks life would be back to normal. Being a Health & Wellness Coach I knew it would be quite some time before I was back to being "100%.

When I came out of surgery I was as happy as could be. Ready to post a video and share with the world how great I was feeling. I could not figure out why the nurse was telling everyone to hurry up and get me out of the hospital before the medication wore off. I had decided to listen to my daughter and stay with my mother until I was able to get around a little on my own. I am so glad I did and so grateful for my mother, her hospitality, and her heart. 

When I woke up, oh my gosh! The pain.... OH THE PAIN! That's when it dawned on my that the nurses knew the surgical medicine would start wearing off. I did not want to take the pain medication but needed to do so to get the swelling down as soon as possible. The pain slowly subsided over several weeks and it helped alot that I had the addition of my favorite arsenal of natural homemade juices and herbs. 

I have been in pain before but I don't remember anything like this. I don't know how people thought I would be up and running around in two weeks. Knee surgery is rated as one of the most painful surgeries to endure. It is also rated as one of the most painful and difficult to recover through. I now know why. 

During the first few weeks I had to overcome not only the physical challenges and limitations but the mental challenges, limitations, and set backs as well. I had friends share their surgery experiences with me and some of them almost brought me to tears.

Although many of our stories were about different types of surgeries, there was one things that remained consistent throughout most all of the conversations. The excrutiating pain of the small things that were never even thought about in the pre-surgery days. The small things that changed our lives forever. The small things that the average person takes for granted. The small things that can send you into a relapse, that can make you scream, that can make you cry. The small things that can put you in the emergency room, or even back into surgery again.

There are many people who like to wash their hair. I am not one of them. I keep my hair washed because I don't like the feeling of dirty hair but it is not something I jump for joy about just thinking about it. After several weeks, I was ready to go to my own home. A few days late it was time to wash my hair. My mother's house had a very nice bench like chair in her bathtub that I could sit on when I washed my hair. I had forgotten about that when I went into my bathroom to wash my hair.

As I stood in the bathroom leaning on my crutches thinking about the fact that I had nothing to sit on in my bathtub, my spirits almost dropped. Immediately I gained my composure and did some self-talking. "I can do this." I told myself. Ten minutes later, I was so tired from leaning on my crutches thinking about how I was going to wash my hair that I went back to bed. 

These are the things I had to think about:

1) Positioning my crutches just right so that I didn't slip as I got into the bathtub because I don't have a walk-in shower.

2) Turning the water on before I get in the shower and getting the temperature just right. It can't be to hot because it would make me jump, causing me to slip and fall. The same if it is too cold.

3) My towel would have to be moved from it's normal place on the towel rack to a position where I could easily access it without twisting, turning or stepping more than one step in any direction so I don't hit my leg on something or slip and fall trying to reach for it.

4) Making sure I put my shampoo, conditioner, and combs in a place where I can reach for it and put it back without dropping them. They would also need to be opened and stay opened to be ready to use. There is no way I'd be able to pick them up if they fall. Not to mention it would be horrible if they fell on my knee, leg, or foot.

Now I'm starting to feel like a victim, but refusing under any circumstances to let the "Woe is me" syndrome set in. I continued to think how I was going to make my needed hair washing happen without incident. My mind went to thoughts of people like Author & Motivational Speaker Faith Moore-McKinney who has overcome many challenges and pushes people to keep going no matter how hard it it.

5) I would have to position myself in the best spot possible in the bathtub to make sure I can reach all my hair washing necessities without having to step around in the shower. Moving my feet would be too risky and would subject myself to falling or dropping something.

5) I would definitely have to make sure that my music was turned on at the very first track to make it through the entire hair washing without needing to step out of the shower to change it to the next song or album. I definitely would not be able to reach out and change it because then I would subject myself to slipping and falling.

6) Making sure that my clothes and heater were in the bathroom so I wouldn't open myself to the possibility of getting a cold afterwards. Catching a cold during recovery would just be horrible.

7) I had to think about balancing myself and making sure not to put more weight on one foot than the other so that I wouldn't slip and fall. Although I ended up basically standing on my left foot the entire time out of fear of causing too much stress on my knee.

8) Then I had to think hard about getting out of the shower. That took a lot of thought. How was I going to keep the towel wrapped around my head, the other towel wrapped around my body, Balance on the crutches as I was getting out of the bathtub. Making sure the crutches don't slip on the bath rug. Maybe moving the bath rug so to take away any possibility of the crutches slipping but then having my warm feet on the cold floor. 

So many things to think about and consider that were very important in light of my present condition. These things were such small thoughts that practically all my life I had not previously given any energy or extra thought to. It had always been just small stuff. I don't think that way any more.

Although I am still recovering and in Physical Therapy my life has been changed. 

You may be going through something right now. You may be wondering if it is every going to end. The small things may seem like mountains or unmoveable weights around your body, or even your mind. Think about those small things and slow down, go back to the baby steps and tiny movements that you've long forgotten. Let the big things go for now. It's your body that you will have for the rest of your life. The dishes can wait. It's okay to eat your soup out of the coffee mug. It's okay to eat the left over chicken for breakfast and a cereal bar for dinner :-) .

The important thing right now, is that you heal properly.

Due to the natural remedy medicines I am taking, the healing process is going beautifully. My knee was cut in four places. Three of the scars are now invisible to the naked eye and the third scar will be practically invisible soon.

Send me a message if you would like the secret to naturally healing your scars. Share your journey of recovery with me as well. I'd love to hear it.

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