Friday, December 6, 2013

under the knife

The dreaded foot surgery, a year in the making... almost literally -- original injury happened on Oct 20, 2012 (a week before Cori and Marcello's wedding in Punta Cana), and surgery was scheduled for Sep 25, 2013 (the day after returning home from Ragnar Relay in California).  I'm sick of this stupid injury and ready to be fixed already!  The procedure was scheduled for 7AM which meant arriving at the surgical outpatient center by 6AM.  It was close to midnight that we finally made it home from the airport (I wasn't kidding when I said it was the day after!) so we were both still pretty tired when we had to leave the house at 5:30 that morning.  I wasn't allowed to eat or drink anything, which was fine, I was looking forward to Chick Fil A breakfast after the operation. 

Lots of prep work, fitting my crutches, taking my vitals, hooking up the IV, making marks on my foot to ensure they operated on the correct one!  The next thing I knew, the nurse was asking me if I'd like something to drink - sprite please - and I kept staring at my foot trying to figure out if they'd already done the procedure.  I didn't remember being rolled into an operating room??  I guess they knocked me out before that part b/c indeed, they were finished and it was time to go home!  I didn't get Chick Fil A for breakfast (I don't really remember why?) but Jon did stop at Subway and got me a breakfast sandwich, and then it was to the couch to be hooked up to my ice therapy machine for the next 48 hours.
Day 1
My surgery was on a Wednesday and the plan was to take the rest of the week off, returning to work the following Monday.  As the weekend came, however, the pain had started (I was taking 2 percocets at a time) and I wasn't sure how that was going to work.  I couldn't even shower yet!!  I contemplated taking additional time, but the threat of a government shutdown gave me the desire to get to the office and see what was happening and get in some hours.  I lasted a whole 40 minutes.  Luckily Chad was around and nice enough to drive me right back home.  I did end up getting that extra time off, with the shutdown lasting over 2 weeks!
Normally, I'd give anything for a day or two on the couch, but I was bored out of my mind!  Joann and Cori were also furloughed and they took turns coming to get me for some day drinking, which I so appreciate!  In retrospect, I didn't take enough advantage of that time off, but I could not wait to get back to work.  Getting a paycheck again also contributed to that feeling...  The crutches sucked, as did not being able to drive, there is no question abut that.  I dropped down to using only one crutch, and eventually just hobbled around in my fancy medical shoe.  Traveling was the worst, though getting pushed around in a wheelchair through airport security does have its perks.
On the way to Boston!
The doctor gave me an initial assessment of 4-6 weeks and I was really hopeful and optimistic that it would be closer to the 4 week mark.  Not so much.  Six weeks is a long time to be completely dependent upon other people.... Jon was awesome though, and I definitely wouldn't have survived without him!  Finally, the doctor gave me the good word.  I still couldn't really exercise for another month at least, but I could walk and I could drive.  I will take it.  I spent that month looking at swim and bike races to focus on for next summer and I'll confess that I did go out on a couple walks (shh.. don't tell!).  After that month though, the doctor gave me the green light to increase my level of activity!  It still hurts to run the 30 second intervals I've attempted twice now, but I know it will get better.  Apparently the swelling and soreness will be the last to go away and it could take awhile.  At least I'm on the mend.