Thursday, July 15, 2010

A Day in the Life of a Recovering Patient

My days are filled with cycles of activity and inactivity.  I get up, shower (or do it at night), go for a 20 to 25 minute walk, then come home and have breakfast.  This is all accomplished by 9:30 - and I'm very proud of that!!  Somewhere I read that if you keep a schedule while you recover you will recover better and have less difficulty readjusting to life after recovery.  

So I persist in getting up with my alarm at 8:15 every morning.  Okay, almost every morning.  I've had a few where I can't move until 9:00, but it's still not bad.  After breakie I usually grab the laptop for a FB visit and watch something on the PS3.  (We download everything we want to watch.  No cable or satellite - and locally we get 2 channels).  

Where was I??  Oh, yeah.  By 10:30 - 11 it's time for a rest.  Sometimes I watch a movie, sometimes I read, and sometimes I nap.  Depends on how little or how much sleep I had the night before. Lately I've needed shorter periods of rest - which shows I'm improving and healing - but I've needed more naps - which shows I'm back to my pre-op sleepless patterns!!!  I was so hoping that I would lose the 1 or 2 - 2 hours awake sessions with the surgery, but not so far. :(  Please, as I continue to heal, let me sleep through the night - at least once a week!  The nights of 4 hours awake at a time suck!

My hubby comes home from work around noon and I get up between then and 1 and have lunch with him.  Then, if I ask to run an errand or go somewhere off we go.  Short trips only to the grocery store or Walmart.   Usually I just grab my book and sit on the patio in my chair if it's nice out, and occasionally have a nap. Again, the nocturnal sleeping habits are messed up!  I don't know how I will manage when I go back to work!  I'm working on my lovely Birkenstock sandal tan lines.  I also read that you should not have sun directly on new scars - UV will make the scars more visible.  So I sit with my head in the shade and my legs from the knees down in the sun to stay warm.  I have a wide brim hat, but don't think I could tolerate wearing it yet.  And my lovely scarf makes my head way too warm to wear if I'm just sitting around the back yard. 

Depending on the day, sometimes I have to lie down before hubby and I make dinner, sometimes not.  After dinner it's off for my second walk of the day.  Right now I'm averaging 1.5 miles total per day.  Not bad for 3 weeks and 2 days post-op!  Sometimes hubby comes with me - he walks 3 days a week. We can't go our old distances of 2 to 3 miles yet, but I'm building up to it a little at a time.  After our walk, I'll lie down again until he comes to bed around 8.  (He gets up at 3 am)  Then it's out to the living room for an hour or two of internet, reading, watching movies and even working on the odd craft project.  It all depends on the day.

My post-op surgical pain is good and decreasing.  I have no more morphine to take - tonight will be my first sleep without it - wish me luck!!  My neck is stiff, but every day I turn my head side to side and up and down to remind the muscles where they used to go. My leg is getting stronger with all the walking and my knee only buckles threatening to collapse if I've gone too far.  My shoulder however is still killing me.  I can barely lift it to the side higher than my waist, and forget stretching it forward above my shoulder height.  I have a doctor's appointment for it on Tuesday with my GP.  Unfortunately, to get back into my former orthopaedic surgeon, there is at least a 9 month wait right now...  We'll see if my GP will order an MRI and if I can get a diagnosis that will speed up my wait for the ortho.  Please cross your fingers for me.  I went in for brain surgery and came out wondering if I'll now need shoulder surgery for the third time.  I so don't want to go through that again!! Nor does hubby!

1 comment:

  1. Good luck sleeping tonight! Maybe I need to have that surgery just to get my ass back into exercising. I kid. Seriously, that surgery is no joke! Hope I'll never need it.

    I wanted to leave a comment on your last post, but I forgot. When I had abdominal surgery, the surgeon used staples instead of stitches, and OMG - they hurt like the dickens coming out! So I could only imagine if my skull was stapled. Holy hell! Wow! But, like you said, the pain is short-lived (but even, still - ow!)