As most of you know, I have arthritis in enough places in my body that old "Arthur Itis" seems to want me to just sit down and quit. But my mother didn't raise no quitter. I just keep going. It does get harder and harder though.
You may recall that I had my second spine fusion surgery last July, and then total hip replacement early this January. Before each, in between each, and after each there has been physical therapy, not to mention lots of pre-op and post-op appointments and x-rays and recovery meds and recovery ordeals. Ask me how I got through Covid confinement? I spent a lot of time in clinics and hospitals and medical center offices.
Now I have emerged, but not as good as new. Last month I consulted with my spine surgeon about back stiffness. Seems that goes with the territory after two fusion surgeries. He referred me to a rehabilitation physician and both referred me for physical therapy.
I had completed PT after each surgery, and while my hip is still healing and strengthening, it is progressing well. Last week I met with my physical therapist for an update, to find out what I can do to maximize my recovery and return to some of my mobility.
Now I have to face reality. I will never again go for that easy striding three mile walk with lightness in my step as I glide along to music in my ears. For that loss I am in mourning.
I have a new PT routine to maximize my strength and mobility. Instead of a routine three times a day, which was a drag, and often not completed, I now am doing all the exercises times three in one setting, three times a week. I have done that twice now. It takes a little over an hour as I learn the routines and rotations. I spent a long time on Sunday building my checklist so I would remember to get everything in and hold myself accountable. It is a tiring workout and has left me stiff but not too sore, and I can cut back at first if I develop sore muscles.
After I finished my PT today I rested a bit and then I went for a walk, getting 1.25 miles, the same as I was doing a few weeks ago before lots of other things got in my way and kept me from exercise walking.
Not everything is fixed. My doctors and PT therapist remind me that my right knee and left hip are also deteriorating. I don't mention the issue with my neck. I just respond that I will take at least a whole year off before considering any more surgery. Two in six months was more than enough. I am fortunate that neither causes me much pain. I just don't move well.
My PT therapist pushes me but then sympathizes. "You were not lucky with your joints." Yeah, right.
I tell you all of this so you will know what's going on with me and understand references I made to difficulties I might have. But in so many other ways I am very fortunate.. I still count my blessings.
While I am sad about my limitations, it is now time to face facts and reconcile with my new reality. I will be learning to live with new expectations.
But I will keep moving. The photos on this post are from my garden, which I will still work in and walk around in and find peace in and share with others, for as long as I can, just like my mother did.