6 weeks ago I had my first total knee replacement surgery. 3 weeks ago I had my second. Home recovery goes well, but would it surprise anyone that when I watch TV my eyes light up the most for advertisements that feature aquamarine water and white sand beaches? Or vistas from mountaintops? While recovery is very limiting, the fact of having done this major surgery is surprisingly liberating. Best case scenario is I'll be free again to roam the world. At the least, walk from my home to the river and along its banks, or hike the Billy Goat Trail. Or walk the major cities of the world! And the beaches!
I'm mostly a shut-in. I watch the world through TV, books, podcasts, the interwebs. I see it differently right now than I did while parked at my desk at the NBC bureau, working from inside the various news stories that drive the day. What gets my attention is when the coverage switches to a live event, something actually happening -- whether its a politician getting grabbed for comment in the bowels of the Capitol, a presser, anything that is REAL. (Not unlike C-SPAN). I love it when a channel gets out of the studio and fires up a camera out in the field. When they return to the same old, I push "mute."
I'm ready for a new new news show: REAL Breaking News.
But I digress...
While at first I thought the three weeks between the two surgeries was too long, I now realize it was the right amount of time. Some people do both at the same time, some do them spaced as much as a year apart. I'm glad I did the three week separation. It gave the first knee some time to heal but wasn't so long that I talked myself out of it altogether. (Because THAT happens).
My physical therapy began immediately after surgery, first at the hospital and then at home with a therapist visiting three times a week. This program will continue for another few weeks and then I will go to an outpatient PT facility. While none of it is easy -- my "babysitters" (family, friends) had to leave the house to not hear my whimpers -- the pain does not last after the exercises and they do make you better.
People ask, "do you feel the new knees?" Yes, I do. Not in a specific way - like I have new parts where knees once were -- but in a general sense of strength and stability. I stand up straighter, and while I walk with pain it is post-surgery muscle pain and not the bone-on-bone pain of before. Sometimes I feel no pain at all! (Sitting still).
Here at week 6, I have been out for some walks. I could do that daily, but I need dry weather and lately DC has been more Seattle than Seattle. Beyond a beach or a hike, I yearn for a good restaurant meal. The food delivery services are a disappointment. Most of the time the food arrives poorly packaged and barely edible. Amazon grocery delivery is on time, well done, and well packaged, though I have yet to get eggs that aren't cracked on arrival.
Back to recovery. More later!