July 23, 2018 at 9:30am, I received a new hip. It was a long trip down the river of denial.
For years, I struggled with my stubborn pride. Ignoring the pain and telling myself, I just need to work this out. Find the right body worker and maybe, discover a natural remedy. I’m an idiot. My body has always been my friend and we’ve had lots of fun. Gymnastics, sports of all kinds, dance, hiking and all sorts of physical adventures. How could it betray me now!? I have to be reminded of my age, sometimes. 52 years on this earth and in my head, I’m still 28. That is, until my body reminds me of the wear and tear I’ve put on it.
So, an x-ray had to be taken and seen to prove to me that I wasn’t going to heal this myself. I never thought I’d be grateful for my monkish, (poor) lifestyle. I qualified for the state’s Medicaid program and within 2 months of my diagnosis. I was in surgery. Hurry up and wait, was my mantra for a while. Talk about a lesson in patience and surrender.
All through this process, I was reminded of how healthy I am. Every medical tech, nurse and doctor was amazed that, at my age. I’m not on any medication other than Ibuprofen and over the counter allergy medicine. My BP is fine. Blood sugar, normal. Now, I haven’t had a physical, yet. I know my eyes need attention because I used to read in near dark and I’m 52. Wear and tear happens. I am always stunned at some of the stories I hear from other people. Genetic disorders, allergies so severe they carry an Epi pen, weak organs, immune systems and autoimmune disorders. My biggest issue is my sensitive skin. I don’t have to monitor my food and I’m not visiting an urgent care 2-3 times a month. I am so grateful!
I don’t understand people who have many, elective surgeries. The last time I was under general anesthesia, was almost 30 years ago. All the medical people gasped. I was told the drugs were way better now. Great, but I’m still being cut open, my hip joint popped out, sawed off and replaced with a foreign material. Well, everyone who helped me through this process has been wonderful. The anesthesiologist was spot on and painless. When I was in my room, recovering. The surgeon came in to tell me how bad my hip was and he had to go in, posterior and fish through my gluteal muscles. The 3 inch scar I was hoping for turned into an almost, 7 inch one. Okay, fine, I heal up nice.
They had me up and waddling, 3 hours after surgery. I had a catheter and hemovac attached to me, so it was rather awkward and hilarious. Not to mention, scary as hell. All I could do was worry that my hip joint would pop out like a cheap doll’s. It didn’t. I was given some exercises, but mostly, was told to walk. I did and developed calluses from the walker. Years of muscle memory had me retraining my body, and it was not happy. 3 days my whole leg was in spasm. It didn’t know what the fuck was going on. Slowly, things began to shift. Every morning , when I got out of bed and began to move. My Sacroiliac joint was like, “Re-calibrating….” Walking became a physical meditation. Reminding my body that it didn’t need to protect the joint so much, anymore. We don’t need to walk like a drunken pirate, anymore, unless I’m one for Halloween. My posture has improved so much! I’m loosing weight, because I can move and dance again! Swimming is a glorious feeling. Being able to stretch everything and just floating. My depression has lifted and I feel like I can get back to life.
It’s almost been 2 months since the surgery. I’m back to work, on light duty. The owner is pressing me to do more and make her more $$! I’m holding my boundaries. If this experience has taught me anything. It’s the importance of boundaries and self care. I’m no good to anyone if I’m broken and spent.