In 36 hours I will be leaving to go to the hospital for surgery #2. All the preparations have been completed and my emotional state is on a rollercoaster.
First of all, ten days ago I had to give up Aleve, my over the counter drug of choice. Aleve is a blood thinner that relieves inflammation. It must be stopped prior to surgery so you do not have increased bleeding. I am allowed to take Tylenol but it does not provide the same pain relief for me. To add to this complication, I spent the past week in Omaha at the office, which meant more walking (more pain) each day. I even have to go down steps to get to the bathroom. I did not get to sleep in my own bed (always a discomfort) and I did not have my recliner to elevate my legs. To put it mildly, I have been in much pain this week.
I have also had to change the side of the bed I sleep on. For the first few weeks after hip replacement surgery, getting in and out of bed requires a certain technique. Certain movements can cause the hip to dislocate and precautions must be taken until the muscles have healed and can hold the new joint in place. In order to start the process with my non-surgical side I need to move to the opposite side of the bed. Thanks again Dave for accommodating my every need. If I seem a little grumpy over the next few weeks we can just blame it on the fact that I have gotten up on the wrong side of the bed.
Emotionally I am nervous, anxious, impatient and excited.
Nervousness – there is always risk with any surgery. Surgery #1 went very well, none of the most common risks of hip replacement were realized. No dislocations, no blood clots and no infections. Will this surgery be as successful or will my luck run out?
Anxiety – recovery takes so much effort. I will need to regain overall strength that is lost during surgery. There will be many showers taken before I can stand alone and not use the shower chair. I will be starting over on physical therapy. I will be using the walker again. Even getting in and out of bed will hurt for several weeks.
Impatience– I am so weary of having pain in every step I take. I am tired of not being able to go to the places I want to go or do the things I want to do. I am tired of complaining, worrying and being negative.
Excitement – after this surgery I am expecting a great leap of improvement. Although the arthritis pain is gone from my left hip since surgery #1, there is still some stiffness and occasional pain in the joint. I attribute this to not being able to utilize the new hip fully due to limitations from my other joints. The key to overcoming joint pain after replacement is exercise. With two joints replaced I should be able to move much more. I have so many items on my bucket list and I want to get started!!!
Thank you all so much for the words of encouragement I have been receiving…..and for reading about my worries and complaints. I hope to be back here soon, 50% closer to overcoming this disease.