Monday, December 23, 2013

6 weeks post-surgery

To start with the positive, I'm coping with this whole non-weight-baring, sedentary, uncomfortable post-surgery transition phase better than I thought I would.  All of the fears I had about this process (e.g. conflict with family, gaining 30 lbs, becoming ridiculously depressed from lack of endorphins) haven't actualized themselves.  And, that's a Good Thing.

Still, there are some days when I feel completely overwhelmed.  Today was one such day.  I know I need to "have faith in the process", but sometimes that is so hard

It is exactly 6 weeks since my surgery, and I was supposed to start walking without crutches (but still in a boot).  So, I tried this, and it was painful. The pain was not terrible, but it was enough to scare me.  I guess the main thing that scared me was that the pain was in the location of my osteochondral lesion; also, it felt like the same type of pain I experienced before surgery: this ache deep within the joint.  So, by the end of the day I was back to walking on crutches.

My plan has been to return to work on December 30 (one week from today) but now I just don't know.  I need to get back to work.  For one thing, I have exhausted my sick time.  But, my main priority right now is to do whatever it takes to give this injury time to heal fully.

People in my network (friends, co-workers, family) have been great about reaching out.  But, sometimes when I'm in a negative mental state that overwhelms  me.   People ask 'how are you doing?' and I don't know what to say.

I really want to project a positive, optimistic persona AT ALL TIMES.  But, there are days when it is hard to do that.  I don't want to allow people to see me as vulnerable, negative, fatalistic (even though a part of me is that way).

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Why me?

When I was told I might never run again, I really wished to be euthanized at that moment.  When I got over that feeling I got angry, mostly at God for taking away my greatest joy in life. 

Why Me? I asked.

Through months of anger, loneliness, and despair, I found some spiritual part of me that was long buried.   Meanwhile,  I found a possible (no guarantees) solution to the physical ailment - a complex ankle injury.   I decided on surgery, scheduled it, and tried to put my faith in the process (something which I generally suck at.).

The support I have had surrounding this surgery has been UN-REAL.

-My parents have been phenomenal, in letting me stay with them and providing for me for these weeks while I am on crutches (including transportation to and from Baltimore, MD).
-So far about 20 people have texted to ask how I'm doing; a handful of others have contacted me via facebook; others have called me;
-one friend visited me here in Charlotte and took me out to dinner
- two of my good friends gave me a care package; another friend sent me a card; and my co-workers in the counseling department all sent me a great funny card and some chocolate wrappers with funny sayings in them. 
-Friends who are religious have offered prayers; one neighbor even prayed with me (which caught me totally off guard but was a very kind gesture); those less religious have offered good vibes.
-One of the women I work with offered to help me with errands and rides when I return to Asheville and gave me her phone number. 
-Right before I left, one of the psychiatrists I work with took one of my drawings from me in order to return it with a better frame.  I did not ask for that.
-Not to mention all of the random strangers that hold doors for me, pull out chairs for me, carry my things and otherwise try to help out.

I did not ask for any of this.

And, it's catching me totally off guard.  The part of me that would normally be asking,  'what's your angle here?' is instead overwhelmed with gratitude.  I feel truly blessed by all this, and I can't help but ask the question:

Why Me?