Tuesday’s post op appointment was very exciting and literally freeing. My amazing surgeon said he gave the okay to be free of my brace while at home and that I could bend my knee as much as I wanted. Not only could I, but that I should. He encouraged me to bend as much as possible and do as many of my four at home exercises as possible. He told me to stick with my brace on for walking and not to put any weight on my leg without the brace but even said I could take a shower without it. Which is amazing and terrifying all at the same time. How does one get in the shower naked and without a brace, without putting weight on their right foot? Very carefully I tell you, and with the help of a handsome ginger to hoist me in and out.
My doc was proud of my progress and said that typically they like to see patients achieve a 70-90 degree range of motion in the knee, and I was at least at 70. I wish he would’ve said I was at 110 but that’s the overachiever in me. He also freed me of my wrap and said my incisions looked wonderful and they gave me some new steristrips, but said those would just fall off soon and to let them go.
They also sent me home with some sweet inside the knee photos of my surgery. You can see the shredded ACL, new ACL, as well as the torn and repaired meniscus and where they did the micro fracture.
As far as pain goes, I am sticking with my morning and evening dose of magnesium and aspirin as well as Tylenol as needed and my beloved ice machine as much as freaking possible.
I am doing my walking without crutches and was told to keep my brace locked at zero degrees and use a crutch until I could walk without a limp. But seriously, how do you walk without a limp when the brace is locked straight and you have absolutely no give in your right leg? umm… ya don’t. So, this rebel decided to try brace unlocked to ten degrees, and with great success I ventured to 20 degrees. Easy peasy. It may not be the best or fastest walk, but it feels better to be getting a little bit of movement with that knee. He DID say that as for my sad, little, baby quad, it wouldn’t really matter how many quad sets I did each day, that it wouldn’t truly improve until I could walk more. So, while I may not be looking like I am catwalk, fashion week worthy, it is still an improvement that causes me no pain. It just feels weird.
Physical therapy was yesterday and it was quite painful. He used elastic bands and got lots of range of motion with my knee. We definitely achieved 90 degrees and without the brace and with me pulling my knee back. He began by making my knee do that, and that sucked, but when I did it on my own it was tolerable. I tried it today by using my dining room table, and it was awesome! So much better than trying to use my couch. My dining room table allows my leg to just hang and gravity really helps. It is just really scary to me to make my knee do what it needs to do, and it is SO scary to be without the brace. However, I need to do this, I know I do, and I don’t want to keep sleeping with this god awful thing that makes it impossible to wear anything but shorts and can you imagine trying to sleep? Good freaking luck.
Today, I added some turmeric curcumin to my regimen and I am really disappointed I didn’t think of that sooner. I know how well my fresh turmeric tea would help after long runs, because it is amazing for inflammation! There is definitely some fluid around my knee and some swelling still and I really think this will help. A lot of what I experience isn’t so much pain as it is just “weirdness” due to the swelling, and not to mention being cooped up and not using it. While it sounds all good to relax and lay around on the couch, it isn’t actually that fun and it isn’t good for my body either. Trust me, my booty is gonna need some serious squats after all this couch sitting.
Tomorrow brings another day of physical therapy, and I am excited to hopefully progress more. I have some exciting opportunities on the horizon, and summer is just around the corner. I need to get to work on this body and I want to be in the pool! It’s almost time to go hop on the dining room table and do some more work. Oh, and some sit ups too because that part of me isn’t getting better sitting on the couch either.
I am going to attempt a shower again tonight and we will see what I can do. Thanks to my loves mother, I have a fancy shower chair so that is pretty cool and humbling all at the same time. Either way, it helped me to take a razor to this leg and boy oh boy, did it ever need it.
What are you excited for this summer? What daily task do you think you would really struggle with if you couldn’t walk?