8/26/12

recovery | a practice in patience | longing for dirt time

Ten years ago, I tore my right ACL.
I got a replacement ACL right away.
One year after that, I re-tore it .. and never had it refixed
I've been playing hard without an ACL for about 9 years now.


Over the last 2 years, the knee has started giving me troubles -- namely, "going out" often, being generally unstable, and causing my normal play-time activities to be less than pain free. With the growing instability comes a risk for damaging the remaining working parts of my knee -- something I don't feel I'd like to sacrifice.

The plan to get this issue addressed is 2 fold:
a.) Remove the old hardware, the re-torn tendon, and fill all of the remaining holes. Basically, start fresh.
b.) Have another ACL replacement. Joy.

So, 3 weeks ago, on August 3rd, I came home and started sitting in my little Nest -- to heal.
Surgery A in the books.


I'm heavily on drugs in this picture. Can't you tell? I could not feel my leg at this point in the game -- but obviously I felt good enough to wander around FaceBookLand... hope I didn't say anything I might regret. If so, I'm very sorry.

These are the two screws that were removed (with a nail-file for reference):

Yes, that is gnarly. Yes, there are still bone fragments stuck in the one on the right. Yes, they are Ti. Yes, they seem to make people queasy when I show them. Yes, you can see the damage done to them by the surgeon when he tried to remove them. Apparently he swore many times during the procedure.

Once the screws came out (which apparently took an hour longer than the Surgeon expected (the surg lasted about 3 hours)), he set to filling the holes (from the screw placements and from previous ACL surgery) with bio bone stuff.

One week after surgery, I was still relegated to my Nest. Recovering. Icing. Working from home and working from my Nest. Have I mentioned how much I like my Nest?




Two-ish weeks afterwards, the swelling had gone done a lot.






Currently, 3 weeks post surgery:


As far as I can tell, recovery seems to be going "quickly". And by quickly I mean: at least I can walk around, and at least my leg does not look like chewed up meat (like I had expected).
I can walk up the stairs just like normal!
I can almost walk down a set of stairs like normal -- but not quite.
I'm slower. But I'm healing.

Deep thoughts during this whole process?
YES. Namely, my husband has taken care of me EVERY SINGLE SECOND during surgery and recovery. How he is not annoyed, bored or simply 'over it', I do not know. He has taken outstandingly phenomenal care of me these last 3 weeks.... Honey, thank you with my whole heart and soul. 

Notes on just how well he takes care of me:
  • He has gotten me every last bit of food, water, drink, drugs, and objects that I could need, had asked for, etc. 
  • He keeps my Nest room filled with absolutely stunning music to keep me groovin' and otherwise chilled out. mmmmm... thank you!
  • He keeps my eyes on the prize: 100% back to powerlyperfect by next spring, reminding me not to damage myself between now and surgery #2.
  • He has kept me motivated, focused, and completely AT EASE.
  • He makes me feel better (and OK) about sitting on my ass so much.
  • He continues to make sure I'm eating well. I would eat pizza every meal if I were left to myself.
  • The absolute HARDEST thing I had to do: SHOWER. Thank you, honey, for making sure I didn't fall over, pass out, or otherwise kill myself while trying to shower that first week.
  • He keeps me smiling, happy, at peace.
Honey, you are magical. And I love you.

The remaining plan is this:
Continue to listen to Ed.
Continue to listen to LW.
Continue to listen to Michelle.
PT, 2x/week with Rockin' PT people.
PT, at home, every day.
I will hopefully get to start walking on DIRT here TODAY!? This week!?
Surgeon says still no riding bikes for another 3 weeks. I had dreams about riding last night -- I might have to just spinn around on something flat here really, really soon.

There is, after all, still a new pony awaiting my attention -- and a whole FALL of RIDING to be done -- before December hits, and with it surgery #2.

Ok, off to PT land!

jj

7 comments:

Tom Purvis said...

You keep healing girl! That hardware is creepy. Orthopedic surgery has gotten incredibly effective in the last 20 years, but I don't think any of us want to really know the details.

Ed is a catch. I would marry Ed in a New York minute, and I really don't swing that way. You two just keep appreciating each other and everything is going to keep going well.

JenyJo said...

Tom, that hardware IS creepy!!! Sorry for all the gore ;)

Yes, Ed is a catch;)

Note taken!

Hugs to you and yours --- both of you!

mwah!

jj

Michelle Mifflin said...

JJ!!!!!!!!!! Ok, that knee hardware is gonna haunt my dreams. RESPECT to your knees. Coupla things: Your toenail polish rocks, your nest is an essential happy part of recovery - it rocks; Ed rocks FACT, you have new pony eye candy to mind wheel the daze and dayz away - that super rocks and well from your nest, all the way over here you made me laugh at Note #1 and #6 - FACT! This too will pass....fast and schweet jebus, I can't imagine what your new knee will unleash.....Rock on....sending super healing vibes your way minus the influenza virus I wrestle. Lurve Miff

Gary B. said...

Hi Jj! Patti told me you had surgery. She also showed me the photo of the new Lenz on FB. I've been thinking of you a lot latley, wondering how you're healing up. I enjoyed your CO Trail posts, I've ridden the same stretch. That was my first bikepack on real single track. Tell Ed hi and heal quickly!

T-Race said...

Sorry to see you this way! So glad you have such a wonderful husband. Best to you! Heal up good!

Juancho said...

I had no idea. We at the Bigringcircus will put our collective mental forces to work manifesting a smooth recovery for you and some karmic reward for Ed.

Think Spring!

JenyJo said...

THANK YOU, JUANCHO! I think I might need your mf'n magic mental forces! Think: callllmmmmmm nerve endings!

T-RACE: thank you too! Hope you're enjoying the remains of a beautiful season up there!

GARRYYYY!!! Email on it's way later today!

MIFF: need to see more pix of you soon. Going to your corner of the web right..... NOW!