Posts Tagged 'knee replacement'

Walking With a Limp These Days

Midway Airport

I surveyed the long concourse last weekend at the airport and realized I couldn’t make it to the gate without help. More help than my ever-present walking stick, aka cane, could provide. I keep pretending I’m out for a hike in the woods with my trusty blue stick except I’m really inside my house or nearby, mincing along.

So, I flagged down some assistance and climbed into a wheelchair to get to my gate. The view is different from the chair. I felt I could notice everyone more clearly and no one noticed me. Certainly no one noticed me for about an hour as I waited for a push to baggage claims when I arrived at Midway.

Hopefully, my limp should be resolved sometime next year after my November knee replacement but for now, it is a daily reality. After months of lament, I’m beginning to stop resisting it and getting closer to embracing it as the next big adventure. After all, what’s the alternative?

For sure, I would like to avoid this invasive surgery. Many prayers have been offered with much resulting peace and presence of God, but no healing has come. At least in my knee. Later on, I will likely be aware of something fresh from the Holy Spirit showing up or waves of gratefulness sustaining me during this season – another kind of healing of sorts. I do trust that I have been heard.

Meanwhile, I am scheduling loads of pre-op appointments, rounding up comfortable clothing for the couch days, reserving books at the library, freezing food for no fuss dinners, thinking about how I will decorate my hospital room (this is fun!) and taking my sweet time getting places.

But before that day comes in a few weeks, with my faithful stick in hand, I’m hitting the road again. Taking the train to New Mexico, the bus to Phoenix, the plane to Chicago, the train again to Quincy and one more drive to a retreat. Many steps for this damaged knee, but these events were on the calendar before the surgery date. I always long for some time to reset after a lot of travel so this time I will get it for sure.

Life is full of plans we make and plans that get made for us. I’m leaning into reaching for the available grace no matter what’s on the table. Well, some days at least.

Hope for the best,

Tish

Happy Birthday to my Bionic Left Knee!

One year ago today I limped into a local hospital with my fashionable pink cane and felt like I signed my life away on the ream of forms a major surgery seems to require.  18 months of debilitating pain and after all the treatments failed, total knee replacement became the only option.

One by one, members of the medical team came in to my waiting room to educate me on their part in the imminent procedure. Overwhelming.

I thumbed through my stack of 3 X 5 cards I created for hope.  Each one had a scripture, a quote, and promises of goodness on the other side of this.  When I couldn’t stay fully awake due to the medications, Tom kept reading them to me.  Next thing I saw were the glaring lights of the recovery room lights.  I made it through the surgery.

Because it was the beginning of the holiday season, I brought Christmas lights to decorate my room, a battery operated Advent candle for nightly readings and prayers and a little CD player to fill the room with holiday music.  Just like at home, I placed photos around the room and even attached a few things to the wall.  I think the staff liked coming in to my room 🙂

Leaving the hospital

Four days later, my family helped me back into my house where I stayed for 4 weeks well attended to my family,  in-home nurses, physical therapists and many friends carrying meals and entertaining me with conversation.  I decided it would be a holy time and it was.

The next few months were hard.  Lots of PT, a dark time of drug reactions, still difficulty in getting around.  Each milestone got celebrated:  The stitches coming out, the end of in-home nursing care, returning the walker, the day I walked to the end of the block, went back to work, stopped using the cane and finally clipping my pedometer back on.

Friends often ask if I would do it again.  It took about 4 months to start to say “maybe” but now I give a hearty YES!

Each day I am aware of what my life would be like without my bionic knee and I am so grateful.  Thank you to all who prayed, encouraged, brought food and loved me through this.

To my left knee….Cheers!

Hope fr the best,

Tish



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