I am quite scattered this morning. My thoughts are jumping from one thing to another like a butterfly in the summer heat.
Not that I'm complaining. Most of the reason for it is quite simple: as of 2 days ago I am finally off of all medications from my surgery. I had stopped pain pills at around day 10 post-op; kept taking sleeping pills for another 2 weeks beyond that. I have continued to take muscle relaxers for all this time - nearly 7 weeks. Two nights ago I just forgot to take one...and I was fine. So last night I didn't take one and today?
I'm fine. In fact, while it might be a cliche to play this at this time of year however...Vivaldi's notes are exactly how I'm feeling.
Buoyant. Joyful. Filled with possibilities.
I am now walking around the house with no walking aid of any kind. And my gait gets smoother each day; there is still a trace of a limp when I first get going but after a few steps - it's getting to the point where you can't tell I had anything done.
Which is the entire point of the surgery and the hard work that follows.
I am trying to do my P.T. exercises everyday and I have to be careful - I can easily overdo it today and will pay for it tomorrow. I try to add additional repititions to each movement each day - some days I succeed, others I don't.
And yet progress is now visible nearly daily. For example: yesterday I did the "mall crawl" all by myself. Walked around a large mall for an hour without taking a break to sit down. Did some shopping (of course) which involved standing around to pay for my purchases. And still...no sitting down. So I remained on my feet for over one hour, hardly ever stopping the movement of my body.
By the time I got to my car I was moving pretty slowly and yet - there was no pain. Some muscle soreness of course which is to be expected. Other than that ... it was just alot of walking around. And I continued my day by making a surprise visit to an old friend, getting home at 5:00pm. Then we had a church obligation last night and ended up going out for drinks with friends. We didn't actually get home and settled until after 10:00pm.
Today? I feel fine. Ready to take on another day! In fact, I tried getting on my elliptical machine this morning and - WOO HOO - I can. Safely and without any concerns about falling or not being strong enough. So now I can start slowly adding some actual workouts to my exercises. Which is beyond wonderful because I need to continue walking as much as possible and with the cold weather coming - and along with it the usual snow and ice - walking outside will become unsafe. So now I can keep up my walking all the while slowly ramping up to actual physical fitness.
Sigh of happiness.
Absent the guidance of a physical therapist, I have been setting goals for myself at the start of each week for the past 3 weeks. My goal for the end of the coming week?
Walk outside the house without a walking aid. This is BIG - the cane I'm using now is as much for me as it is to alert others that I'm not 100% stable. To walk in public - crowds jostling, people being their usual clueless selves - is scary and exciting at the same time. It is an achieveable goal - particularly if I get on the elliptical every other day to continue to strengthen my thigh muscles.
I go back to work in 2 weeks; I want to be able to walk in under my own power and just get back to living my life.
Living. My. Life.
The point in recovery when I am tired of having to plan out every move - has arrived. I just want to stand up and move. I want to just simply put on my shoes without having to use 2 or 3 grabbers and shoehorns. I want to be able to get dressed without thinking about every move.
I want to shave my damn legs.
This too shall pass. My next post-op appointment is November 15th; at which point I expect all my movement restrictions to be lifted. And that's when my life will truly start again.
In the meantime - it is exercise, focus on walking smoothly and enjoying the progress I see every day.
And again, I'm not complaining. I have been blessed with an amazing recovery, ahead of all expectations. I'm just an impatient person by nature.