FAI: surgery day

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Surgery was this morning. We got to the surgery center about 6:20. Xander dropped me off and my mom stayed with me while Xander took Katja to daycare. He got back before I went in.

Everyone was very nice. I was a worried, but that’s not unexpected. I kept telling myself that they do lots of these every week, that everything will be fine, but I don’t like general anesthesia. The anesthesiologist was great, though, and once he knew why I was worried he said he’d make sure it was okay. They have a special surgery table for hip surgery – my feet were on rollers and my legs weren’t on the bed. The bed just went down to my back and the bottom of my spine. I didn’t see much of it because as soon as I was settled on the table, the drugs started taking effect.

I woke up in the recovery room. The nurse was sweet and held my hand for a few minutes because I was kind of freaked out. I kept sliding in and out of sleep. Eventually they took out the IV and gave me something to drink, water, I think, and took me into another room to see Xander and my mom. I don’t think I was very coherent. My throat closed up at one point so I took my inhaler and it opened up right away. I’m not sure if it was an asthma attack, but I couldn’t get air in fast enough and I was making noise while I was breathing, which never makes me happy. In any case, it ended up being fine.

They shifted me into a wheelchair and got me to the car. I got in with lots of help. I was in and out of sleep all the way home. Xander stopped and picked up apple and carrot juice because my mouth was really dry and tasted nasty (probably from being intubated) so I got to drink a bit of juice. When we got home I didn’t think I was in good enough shape to get on crutches even as far as the door. I dozed for quite a while in the car; my mom stayed with me and Xander went inside to make sure everything was set up. Once I finally could focus my eyes and felt steadier, I got out (with help, lots of help!) and got inside. I settled into what’s likely to be my home for the next couple of weeks and then I slept some more.

Xander tracked when I needed to take doses of pain pills; many people have said that it’s extremely important to stay ahead of the pain. I spent much of the afternoon dozing, too. I wiggled my foot around and stretched my calf muscles; the doctor said as long as I wasn’t engaging the hip or moving it, I should move my lower leg to keep the blood flowing.

I haven’t been hungry yet. I have been drinking a lot of juice and Xander made matzo ball soup (Jewish penicillin, one of my favorites) and I ate a little of that. My throat is quite sore. I’m not having nausea from the painkillers, which is very good; it’s a common side effect. I just don’t have much interest in food right now. I’m sure tomorrow my family will make sure I eat!

I’m non weight bearing on that leg for 3-4 weeks; we’ll know more in a couple of weeks after my first appointment. Two crutches are not fun, but I’ll follow doctor’s orders perfectly for this. If I do, I should be running again in six months. If I don’t, I could do permanent damage. That leaves me no reason to push or screw anything up.

I know that later days will be harder, but for the moment it’s mostly okay. Painkillers are working on the worst of the pain. I’m keeping my hip iced, which helps with pain, too. Today is the start of a long set of movements towards recovery. The pain is easier to handle, though, because I know, eventually, it will get better. I didn’t know that before, but now the damage has been fixed and I can look forward to something instead of just slogging through every day in constant pain, not having any expectation that it will get better.

I’ll try to update this regularly. I know it helped my state of mind a lot to read what other people had been through with this.