Thank God that I’m a healthy person. It’s very easy for a healthy person to take their good health for granted, but having survived this recent surgery (total hip replacement on December 20), I now have much greater awareness of what good health means when something big comes along. To be completely honest, I had more tests and more “health care” in the month before surgery than I’d had cumulatively over my entire lifespan...including birth of a single baby and birth of twins. Truly, I am blessed, and I intend to make more effort to remain as healthy as I am.
This was my first-ever surgery. To say I was a scared wreck that day (and the few days leading up) is an understatement, but I did my best to be brave and remain chill. Someone was stressed out enough as it was, and it was certainly not in my best interests to add to his stress level. Everything I knew about surgery was direct from friends’ stories and what I’d seen on TV shows. What a pleasant surprise it was (or maybe my positive impression is because of the good outcome).
I was wheeled into the operating room which was much like a freezer. The lady pushing my gurney apologized for the extreme cold. I had no vision correction at the time, sadly. I remarked that I wished I could get a clear look at the equipment and tools. She said I was better off not seeing it because it scares most people. A team of people met me in the operating room and they rolled me up beside what looked like a tilt table of some kind, with breaks in the table so that knees could be bent or the person could be placed in a sitting position. Behind me, somebody was moving heavy metal objects that clanged together. I asked if they wanted me to slide over onto the table. The anesthetist said no, that people would move me onto it after I was asleep. I lamented that I would have tried harder to lose weight if I’d known people were going to have to lift me. One lady told me not to give it another thought – they oftentimes move people who are 300 to 400 pounds onto the table.
They put a mask over my face and told me to breathe deep. The last thing I heard was the anesthetist say my oxygen level was at 100%, and now she was going to put something in my IV to make me go to sleep. When I wake up, it will all be over. Sweet dreams... She was right. I remember nothing of the recovery room, but a nurse woke me up in my room and it was all over. Easy peasy (for me, anyway). Nothing hurt, I was alive and well, and Jerry was standing close by.
Fast forward, 15 days later (today), and I’m well on the road to recovery. Yesterday, I graduated from walker to cane, and I was able to put my own socks on. Today, I was able to tie my shoes. Woo-hoo! Tonight, I’m climbing the stairs so that I can sleep in a bed rather than on the couch, and tomorrow night, I’m taking a real shower (instead of washing up in the sink). The only thing I still need help with is putting on and taking off those F’ing TED hose off my operated leg. Good leg, no problem; bad leg, no way. Erin has been home since I got out of the hospital and has become expert in helping me. She went back to school this evening, so now, Someone will have to step up to the plate. God help us.
I start back to work Monday morning. Tomorrow, I’ll take a short drive over to the bank to make sure there are no issues with getting in and out of the driver side, and to put some gas in my car. We have one week to get ready before the semester starts. Even though I got a lot done before leaving for Winter Break, there is still much to do. I have one brand new class, one class with new course materials, and then the other four classes will be just as I taught them last semester. University #2 has no winter break so my online classes there have been going on throughout my recovery. Work is good...I like it.
Erin took down all the Christmas decorations yesterday, boxed them up, and carried them to the basement. The only thing left to take down and put away are the outdoor garland and lights. It has been pouring rain the past few days, and our porch is slippery when wet. I asked Erin not to bother and we’ll just leave it for a few months down the road when I am able to climb a ladder again. We will not be turning the Christmas lights on, and the garland is more winter-seasonal than Christmasy. It will be fine to leave up until spring. Erin has been such a blessing to have at home these few weeks. She has helped me (and Someone) with everything.