My home is starting to look like a medical supply store. This is new territory for me. I know it’s inevitable that your body starts to betray you as you age. I know I have been lucky with few health problems so far. I guess that is why this is such a big deal to me. I don’t have much experience with having to adapt my little world to help me do things I used to do without thinking.
In The Great Scheme of Things, it’s just a partial knee replacement, a pretty common procedure and not at all comparable to some of my blogger friends who deal with chronic pain and conditions that they have lived with for many years. Friends, you truly have my utmost respect because you deal with daily pain and discomfort with such grace and style. In no way do I want to make light of your situations.
But this IS happening to me and I just have to make some comments on the whole thing. As I have done my entire life I try look at things from a humorous viewpoint to get me through the fear and uncertainty.
In my bathroom I now have a raised toilet seat and a toilet safety frame…. It seriously is named the Hi-loo and (trust me) we have had a great time describing the Hi Loo in our best British accents. I inherited a walker from my Dad; it folds up and everything. I also have a cane, which is great fun (if you don’t really need it) because you can shake it at people and yell things in an old lady voice like ” get outta my way… can’t you see I’ve had a partial knee replacement!”
I also have a shower/bath seat, which I think is going to be a wash.(sorry I couldn’t resist) The shower seat fits best in the tub with the hand held shower. Unfortunately that is my husband’s bathroom which, in itself, gives me the heebie jeebies. I would have to disinfect the entire bathroom before entering, or maybe even set fire to it to get it really clean. I tried placing it in the shower in my bathroom, but there’s not enough room for both of us. I’ll figure it out later.
I inherited my Dad’s armchair. The seat is a bit higher than most chairs and it has sturdy arms which one can use for some leverage to get up and to sit back down.
My recliner, my best friend (or so I thought) where I spend most of my spare time, is a no-no. Very sensibly so, because when you are seated in a recliner your legs are not above your heart (to keep swelling down).
I think I may have just discovered why my body shape is rounder in the middle than other ends. It’s that damn recliner. Everything entering my body by mouth sinks to the middle and stays there. Wish I had known this, I could have been standing up all these years and would have just have large feet instead of a large derriere.
I have a garbage bag on the seat of the car. To enter the car, back yourself up to the seat and slide on the garbage bag across to where you belong! A small stepstool to enter the car was also suggested since the knee will not bend without extreme pain for a while.
In addition to getting all this equipment ready, I have been doing some exercises to prepare for surgery.My water aerobics was a perfect prep for joint replacements. I am also learning to do ankle and calf pumps, quad sets, gluteal sets, deep breathing and bed transfers. Not to mention Hip Abduction, heel slides, short arc quads, and foot slides.
By the time you read this, It will all be over except for the crying. I really don’t even know what kind of patient I am going to be …because I have never been one.
I have been a 6 for quite a few months now on the pain scale. I am pretty sure I will hit number 10 somewhere in the middle of all this mess. I just hope I can be a zero again someday.
S0…. if you don’t hear from me for a few days… it’s because I turned out to be a lousy patient and I’m hanging out on the right-wing end of the pain scale.
Come to think of it, I’m probably not the only right-winger crying this week.