Posted by: itneverrainsinseattle | June 22, 2010

Because there’s not enough going on in my life…

When I had the knee surgery on Friday, I had a local anesthetic and a “block” (a spinal), which meant that I was awake for the operation (and got to see it on the monitor!) but I couldn’t feel anything they were doing.

Well, except when they were nailing something in, or drilling… then I could feel the vibrations. Boy, that’s a weird experience. Watching on the monitor, hearing the sounds, and feeling the vibrations, but not actually feeling the work itself being done.

What’s also weird is watching them take a very long piece of equipment and shove it into my knee and keep pushing it in, in, in like my leg is some kind of Mary Poppins carpet bag that can hold an entire hat rack.

Aside from the first few minutes of the surgery, where my brain was busy disconnecting what I was seeing on the screen from the fact that it was *my leg* they were working on *in real time*, watching the procedure was very interesting. It was like watching the Discovery Channel, only I could ask questions of the doctor, who was only too happy to answer. I think he enjoyed having a patient who showed interest in his work.

After the surgery, I was wheeled to a recovery room, where they continued to monitor me while some of the anesthesia wore off. Once I had enough feeling in my torso and toes, they wheeled me to the post-recovery-recovery room, where I was taught how to use crutches. You’d think that would be a no-brainer — I certainly did. Wrong. There’s a trick to it, and I wasn’t prepared for the fact that my knee wasn’t responding to any commands from my brain. I had no control over that leg at all, so crutches were a must.

Now, I must confess that up until the surgery, the fact that my knee hurt wasn’t really slowing me down. It prevented me from moving heavy boxes and the like, but I was otherwise going about my business as if it were business as usual. Talking with a bloggy friend of mine (I’m not naming names) about what a lazy crybaby her ex husband became after he had similar surgery, I honestly couldn’t imagine why he suddenly became an invalid after having his knee repaired.

Then then my spinal block wore off.

My knee still refused to obey any commands, but now it was very loud about all of the insult it had suffered. So *that’s* where they drilled holes! So *that’s* where they pounded in a screw to hold my new tendons. So *that’s* where my brace is clamped onto my calf like a vise!

Somebody told me that “Day 3” is the worst, but that things get better then. Sunday morning, while it felt like sledge hammers were doing their worst to my right knee, I kept thinking, “The surgery was Friday. Does that make today Day 3? If so, I just have to hold on for one more day. One more day. If tomorrow is Day 3, I’m going to amputate RIGHT NOW!”

BTW, Sunday was Day 3. I felt much better on Monday.

Today is Tuesday. I still can’t walk without crutches, which means I can’t even carry a simple glass of water from one room to the next. I slept terribly last night, because I tried to start weening off the Oxycodone (which I hate). Turns out, my leg still hurts. I’m back on my meds now, but trying to take it easy, and occasionally getting up to exercise the ol’ crutches a little.

IN THE MEANTIME, Penny and I have agreed to put the house up for sale. So now she’s packing up like a demon, trying to get as much of the clutter out of the house as she can. Which means a lot of *my* crap has ended up getting tossed into boxes while I am powerless to either help or to make sure I know what’s going where. And as I’m sure you can imagine, my packing priorities might not be the same as hers.

Oh, and even though we are working things out with the mortgage holder (who is encouraging us to sell), yet another credit card company (the mortgage holder!) has cut back on one of my credit cards. We’ve been very good about paying down our debts. This is very disheartening.

But at least I have to return to work soon (probably tomorrow) and resume my job-on-the-side in order to hit some deadlines for them (mustn’t cheese them off, lest I need them again before too long).

Let’s be clear on this: I do *not* thrive on drama. I do *not* feed off chaos. This summer is proving to be a perfect storm of sorts, but I will get through it, and look forward to an autumn of some serenity and sanity. We just need to get past selling the house, finding new places to live, divorcing, establishing custody arrangements, streamlining the work/income scene, healing the knee, and starting a new life. That’s all.

When I started this blog and started asking the hard questions about divorce, I never imagined things would get this complicated before they could get straightened out.

PS: I am, at the moment, completely at Penny’s mercy. She could take anything, do anything, and I’d be helpless to stop her. While there have been some genuine mistakes (a miscommunication that led to me being four hours late taking some pain meds, which led to me being a very unhappy camper yesterday) and some general overwhelmedness on both of our parts, the fact is she is doing what she can to hold everything together while I convalesce; to bring me meals when I’m too tired and weak to make it downstairs, etc. All in all, if there were ever any evidence that our divorce is still going amicably, I’d have to point to this episode and say that while the pressure has been greatest on us both, she’s still offering what help and support she can during my recuperation.

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Responses

  1. gaaah. all the way around.

    i feel your pain about the drama and chaos thing. i have made such a concerted effort in my life to keep a nice, firm hold on things. but the last two years have been a constant stream of spikes of emotion and just ridiculous events. when the papers are signed, when everything’s over, i have to believe in my heart of hearts that things will settle down.

    hope the recovery goes as quickly as possible.

  2. Glad you got your knee fixed – it will be so much better in the long run. I read your last paragraph about how you hope things will return to a more serene state in autumn, and I hope that for you as well. I found for me that after the moving out, there was even more drama and readusting because everything became “real” instead of theoretical, and it raised a whole new set of emotions. Even after the papers were signed (in reference to magnolia’s comment), there was and is a lot of emotion and readjustment. Just now, five months after the divorce, I am starting to feel like I am coming back to myself, but it has been an amazingly emotional and turbulent time – nearly 2 years since I made the statement that I wanted a divorce. As always, wishing you well.

  3. Watching your surgery must have been so unreal. Keep minding!

  4. First of all, you’re handling the knee situation 100 times better than my ex too.

    I’m really glad Penny’s been a help with this. That’s definitely promising!

  5. Wow, I can’t imagine what a surreal experience that surgery must have been. I don’t think I’d have the stomach to watch them cutting into me like that and jamming an umbrella up there. (Lovely image.)

    I’m encouraged to hear that Penny is being so good to you during your convalescence. People can be very decent during a crisis.

    It occurs to me that we are currently watching your marriage-ectomy. The doctors are in there slicing and dicing. It’s a much, much, much longer process than your knee operation. The healing will also take a lot more time. Day 3 may be a real bitch, but you’ll get through.

    Good luck with the rehab. Both of them.

  6. Wow…you watched it? There’s no way I could do that. Hope you heal fast!

  7. Note to self: do not read blogs about surgery while eating lunch

    😉

    In all seriousness, glad you got through it ok and Penny is being helpful to you around the house as you recover.

    And I am glad you are moving forward with selling the house. As hard as it is, I think it will truly be the best for you (both)!

  8. Sounds like a painful thing that I never want to experience. Hope that it being Wednesday now, you are feeling a little better.


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