Knee Surgery Update at Two Weeks — the Worst is Past!
Right now it is 8:30 AM on Wednesday, April 19. Exactly two weeks ago at this moment I had walked in to the surgical wing of Trinity Hospital (with crosses in all the rooms, for which I thanked them). They told me to disrobe and put on the silly medical gown, which is open in the back. After decades of medical practice, you’d think they’d come up with something better than that, but there I stood with a breeze at my backside.
Six medical personnel kept identifying themselves and asking for my birthdate— probably to insure they were operating on the right guy, but maybe also to see if I was alert and ready for this procedure. The laid me on the bed with wheels.
The anesthesiologist made me sign papers, then added the drip through a needle inserted into the back of my hand. He asked me if I felt anything. I said no, so he upped the drip and the next thing I knew — well I knew nothing. I was out! From that point on the only thing I know is what they told me and what I saw a few hours later when I woke up.
These two weeks have been the most unusual, unexpected, disorientating, frustrating, never-ending and painful I’ve ever had in my life. Prior to the double knee replacement surgery, when I did my pre-op preparation, Dr. Carpenter’s medical assistant told me, “The first two weeks are the worst. You’ll wish you had never done it!” Wow, was she right! There have never been truer words spoken.
Since I’ve been laying here in bed and struggling to get up and move around, I have been inundated with lovely notes and email encouragements and prayers from friends far and wide, even from people I don’t know. It helps to keep perspective—I’m just one of millions going through similar experiences and worse. I am learning empathy and perspective!
Many people are going through surgery and other procedures and experiencing more pain than I did and it’s out of their control. I walked into the hospital and paid them to do this to me!
So, things are increasingly better. I am up five or six times a day with the walker moving around the house, taking showers, using the restroom on my own, raiding the refrigerator, doing the exercises (ouch!), and sleeping a little better. My good wife, Janet is constantly at my side. She has never left for more than 30 minutes at a time to run up to the store or the post office. I sure married up when God helped us find each other.
The physical therapist named Jigar (pronounced like a jigger of whiskey) has been great and says I’m making excellent progress. I will miss him after his last visit today. Starting Friday we have to leave the house and go to an offsite physical therapist three times a week for a couple of months. Today Jigar is going to make me get out of bed and walk outside, down the steps to get into the car in preparation for Friday. It’ll be nice to smell the fresh spring air.
We are grateful for all the notes, emails and blog comments. Thanks for the many heartfelt prayers and well-wishes. They mean a lot.
Thanks to God for his nearness and blessings in the midst of this. I’m especially grateful for the healing process that he built into our bodies on the day when he made us male and female. On the 7th day God ceased from his initial creation, but the work of creation did not stop on that day. Every time a new cell replaces an old one, a wound is healed, and the bloodstream brings life-giving nutrition—the work of creation is continuing.
John 5:16–17: “This was why the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because he was doing these things on the Sabbath. But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.”
Even on the Sabbath the Trinity is continually working to hold all of existence in existence, to continue the creation process through redemption, healing and restoration. Every new baby and healed wound is God still at work.
Colossians 1:17 “And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.”
My goal is to be up and walking around on my own somewhat normal in a couple of weeks and ready to board a plane to take our groups to Poland in August and Israel four times yet this year. I can’t wait to bound up and down the steps of the bus and up and down the stairs into churches without grimacing and hanging on to railing for my balance. Upward and onward!