Sunday, December 2, 2012

In Rehab


As I don't have my camera with me . . .  and as any pictures I might take here at the rehab facility would be boring/depressing/gruesome or some combination thereof . . .  we'll make do with some old pictures that have been, well, rehabbed . . .

 So, what did  I do on my first full day of rehab? It started at five when blood was drawn, vital signs taken, and meds dispensed. I have a keen interest in those meds, as getting up and down really hurts . . . . and I suspect I'll participate more happily in therapy if the pain is kept at a dull roar. . . 

My room is tiny but I have a bit of a view of an interior patio and sun and shadows across brick walls and metal roofs. And I don't have a room mate, thank goodness. I'm not actually very sociable in the best of times and having to chat with a stranger (or anyone, really)when I'm looking and feeling my worst is my idea of hell.

A never-ending stream of folks keep popping into my room to ask the same questions over and over-- How do you feel? (how do you think?)  What are your aims for therapy? (survival) do you wear dentures?(no) hearing aids?(what?) when was your surgery? (Tuesday afternoon) OMG, was that sound your other knee? (yes, it's bone on bone. . .)

And I've discovered the small pleasures . . . brushing my teeth . . . a warm washcloth for my face (my last bath was Tuesday morning and I'm feeling a tad odorous . . . a fresh apple from home (institutional food is pretty disappointing) sitting in  a wheelchair in a ray of sunshine while waiting my turn with the inquisitor  therapist. . .

The therapy is challenging and, there's no way around it, it HURTS. The therapists and, indeed, everyone here, are kind and patient and when, after giving a smartass answer to one charming young woman, I apologized for being grumpy, she just laughed. "Grumpy? At least you haven't bitten me yet."

And I'll try not to. . 
 
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27 comments:

Brian Miller said...

well not biting is a good thing...ugh...i hope that it goes well...small graces, no room mate...hang tough..smiles.

Ms. A said...

Whatever you do, don't piss them off. They've got you between a rock and a hard place and can make your rehab much harder... like delaying your meds! Hang in there, I'm rootin' for you!

Martin said...

I have some idea of what you're going through, Vicki. I severely damaged my knee, back in 1993, and was on crutches for 6 months. The rehab was extremely painful, but the physios knew their business, and taught me how to walk again. It must be torture, being away from the farm, but you're showing some keen spirit and no doubt you'll be homeward bound, sooner rather than later.

June said...

Well, you must be past the worst part anyway. Anything after the first day post-surgery is . . . improvement . . . isn't it?
Good therapists are worth their weight in gold, I think. I don't know how they don't go home in tears every day.

Vicki Lane said...

The folks here are the best -- and not only am I not biting,Ms. A, I'm remembering to thank everyone for everything -- whether it's the nice lady who wakes me at 5:30 to draw blood or the nurse who brings the meds or the therapist who suggests I bend my knee a little farther...

I'm seeing improvement and TODAY I get to take a bath and wash my hair which will certainly make me feel a lot better.

I do hope I'm past the worst -- and knowing how many people have done this same surgery with excellent results helps me hang tough.

KarenB said...

A chatty roommate, or even worse a chatty roommate who watches television incessantly, must be in one of Dante's circles of hell.

Not that my therapy was a hard or painful as yours, but for some reason I found it helpful to think of it as akin to childbirth - painful but rewarding at the end. You just have to keep going through the pain.

B. Rogers, Alchemy of Clay said...

Glad to hear you're still fighting the bears...pain that is. Of course you'll get through this, and will be playing the piano soon. What, you couldn't play before the surgery? Virtual hugs sent as you greet each routine and soon shall be home.

Wayfarin' Stranger said...

I glad to see you haven't lost your sense of humor along the way. Hang in there; it will be worth it.

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

Glad to know you are surviving. I get very tired very quickly of being a nice patient, especially at one in the morning when the shift changes and the new nurse on duty comes in and wakes me up to introduce herself. Ugh.

We all wish you a speedy recovery and hope you're home soon. Willa misses you.
Sam

Frances said...

Vicki, it surely looks as if your excellent sense of humor and balance are in excellent condition, no matter which challenges are provided.

I absolutely agree that having a room to yourself to begin your recovery has got to be very helpful.

Your wintry icy blue photographs are splendid!

Best wishes...I'll be that you are already the rehab staff's favorite person. No kidding! xo

Chris A said...

Hang tough,Vicki! It will pay off. Sending you good karma.

Sandra Lassen said...

Dang, Vicki, hope you are not there for long. Bite into your apple and pretend it is the PT. I had to go to physical therapy for nine mos. in 1988, knee injury from a bad auto accident. I hated it so much! The gym they sent me to was full of hard oiled bodies, male and female, and me, a flabby 45 yr old whose idea of exercise is a long walk in the woods. I usually hurt worse when I left than when I arrived. Try to be good, don't bite anyone unless absolutely necessary, and think about getting home as soon as you can! (PS-my knee got well and is pain free, although it took a danged long time...hoping the same for YOU!)

Jean Baardsen said...

When I had my hip replaced in April, there was one other hip and 3 or 4 knees done that week. The other hip and I would sit and watch while the therapists iced and weighted down the knees to get them to start to straighten out. The other hip and I would look at each other and whisper, Thank God it was only a hip!! Hang in there. It really does get better fairly quickly.

Coloring Outside the Lines said...

Will be thinking good wishes for you to recover quickly Vicki. My dad just went through this and he is doing wonderful! It will be better before you know it!

Inger said...

I'm sending lots of good wishes for a fast recovery. I would hate a room mate too under those circumstances. I hope time will pass quickly as you start the rehab work. And the pictures are magnificent. Never seen anything like them. All the best!

Vicki Lane said...

At last I've had a bath and washed my hair and my mood has improved a great deal -- actually, I feel a little euphoric!

Victoria said...

Thanks for the update, Vicki, you've been on my mind. I hope you'll soon be doing so well they'll let you go home.

Blessings, Victoria

FOLKWAYS NOTEBOOK said...

Thinking of you in rehab sounds like you are pretty spunky -- that should get you through with flying colors. -- barbara

Tammy said...

It's good to hear you are still kicking, even if a little feebly. It'll get better...it will it will... I can understand how hard it would be, being away from the place you love and getting all this pain thrown at you and having to be NICE too...ugh... That was the first thing my Mom wanted when we got her home--was her hair washed. She had to wait another day or so for a bath, but oh, how she reveled in getting her hair clean.

Take care of yourself, don't bite and work hard to get out of there!

Tammy

Darla said...

Blech. My sympathies ... and hopes for as rapid a recovery as is possible!

Vagabonde said...

Well you are brave. I hope that your knee will heal quickly. Both my knees are rotten – the left one has a cracked meniscus that was never treated (it was an accident at work) and the right knee has no cartilage left and arthritis. I have a cane when I walk down hill and it is hard to walk while on trips but I still want to wait some more for the surgery – it hurts so badly though that I awake every time I turn around in bed during the night. So, I know how it feels to have painful knees. You should improve rapidly and I hope you will keep us informed of your progress. I read your post at Meandering and Muses – your current book sounds like a winner. I think it would be difficult to write though – I mean to get into the feelings of that time. Being on top of your mountain would help - away from the crowd. My husband is having after cancer treatments, once a week, and the therapist says “take a deep breath” every time it is painful. So I say – take many deep breaths!

Mel said...

I hope you heal quickly and time melts away until you are back to your new old self. Make sure they give you your meds before they get you working, or as my friend the nurse says, stay on top of the pain, don't get under it.
Best wishes for a speedy recovery. I'm sure the bath was a game changer. :)

Reader Wil said...

You see Vicki lots of bloggers are thinking of you and we all hope that you soon will be home at your farm and happy walking around among the animals and in your garden. At this moment it's snowing here. It is wet snow and doesn't last.
Vicki, I wish you a speedy recovery and less pain than yesterday !
My sister had a new knee and even if it took a long time to fully recover, she walks now rather well and without pain.

Star said...

...and you can always give some thought to the book you're writing. Lots to do when you're on your own isn't there!
I'm sorry you're hurting and hope that phase will quickly pass.

Anonymous said...

"t I have a bit of a view of an interior patio and sun and shadows across brick walls and metal roofs" reminded me of my favorite O. Henry short story, "The Last Leaf." I know your rehab story will have a different ending.

Deana the queena

nidynoddy said...

Vicki, I have had 3 knee replacement, yep. 3. Two in 2001 and then I wore one out and it was replaced in 2003. Silently I would use "bad" language only to myself and I even worked up to the "f" word and then I would just smile. All is well now altho store bought is not as good as homegrown. Remember to massage that scar, you will be glad you did....I used cocoa butter on the scar,

nidynoddy said...

Vicki, I have had three knee replacements, yep three...two in 2001 and I wore one out and had it replaced in 2009. You can't hit or bite the terrorists but you can silently use really "bad" words. I even worked up to the "f" word and then I would just smile knowingly. Be sure to massage your scar when you get home you will be so glad you did....I used cocoa butter. I do find that store bought knees are not quite as good as home grown tho....BA