The last week and a half has been somewhat of a roller-coaster. To recap: the surgery and immediately following the surgery went very well.
I started physical therapy on Day 2. It was pretty drugged up and the actual therapy wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought it would be. However, when they unwrapped my leg, in addition to the arthroscopic pinhole incisions, I had two much larger incisions. These are the typical incisions one sees with ACL reconstruction, but they certainly were not anticipated! About 20 stitches down the front and 12 on the side!
My mom stayed with me until day 6. Most of these days are a blur for me… I spent either sleeping or watching TV. However, words do not describe how grateful I was to have her here with me. I thought I would have been further down the road of recovery when she left; and I know that it made it much harder for her to leave.
I returned to work on day 6, for a few hours, sitting on telecons. Nothing too strenuous. Day 7 I worked 11 hours…and other than the hour of PT I had mid-day I barely moved my leg. This was a very bad day. Feeling the stress of work and pain/stiffness in the leg I broke down in tears.
I was on my own for Day 8; other than when my father-in-law drove me to PT. I did a much better job of managing my stress and balancing work & personal care. There was a large sense of pride being slightly more self-sufficient for the first time in many days.
By day 9 I am feeling very happy with my recovery. I feel confident enough to take a test drive. I have also successfully graduated to one crutch.
Day 10…. Oh boy… day 10. I was on my own again and feeling very confident. That morning I showered and headed downstairs to make breakfast. Either the combination of the hot shower or doing too much I got nauseous, dizzy, and sweaty. I laid on the office floor (because that’s where the ice machine was) for an hour. When I awoke, it was time to head to physical therapy.
My warm up on the bike has consisted of half rotations (back and forth)… Day 10, I make full rotation! And continue for 2 full minutes! Success! After therapy I came home to work for a few hours. Then drove out to doctor’s appointment… time to get the stitches out!
I left the doctor’s in shambles. The ortho-surgeon said I have more swelling and bruising that he expected. My range of motion is lacking a little… he gave me a goal to hit on my two week mark and exercises to do daily. The stitch removal was painful and the nurse was not tender or considerate of all the bruising. I popped open a steri-strip on the way out and had to be fixed up in the waiting room.
“It doesn’t matter how many times you get knocked down, what counts is how many times you get up”
Last night, I was a mess…Many tears were shed. But this morning, I have a renewed sense of perseverance.
I know I need to elevate more. Ice more. Exercise more. And REST more. Basically, I need to be patient and keep taking care of ME.