Monday, December 26, 2011

I hereby declare myself "lightly active"

Today is the day, I decided.  Today is the day that I transition from “rehab/recovery” to “lightly active”.  This is a big milestone for me, and one thing I’m not going to do is take it for granted.  A couple weeks ago I was feeling almost as optimistic, until I made a failed attempt at hanging out a truck window and thought I might be facing a second surgery.  That was a wakeup call, and I vowed that if I came out of that okay, I wouldn’t take my healing for granted again.  I promised myself that I wouldn’t push anything too far too fast, and I would quit asking when I could ride my horse.
                After that poorly executed move a couple weeks ago, my hip was very very tender.  I had tickets to the Patriots game this past Saturday, and I really started to stress over how well I was going to handle that.  I knew there would be a lot of walking, some stair climbing, an uncomfortable seat, and probably lots of standing up.  Since I promised not to be a hero and to ignore what anyone thought of me, I brought my crutch with me.  It ended up being a great idea and I really feel that it helped save me.  As a result, instead of being sore and virtually immobile on Christmas morning, I felt surprisingly good!

Tailgating at the Pats game! Brrrrr....

                There was only one thing I asked Santa for this year, and that was a new hip.  Now, my mother thought this was a little unnecessary because my hip was fine; it just needed to heal.  So, I revised my one and only request and said I just wanted my hip to heal faster.  Now I can’t exactly prove that he had anything to do with this, but I will say I was feeling pretty springy.  And since “healing faster” isn’t something tangible that I can unwrap, Santa also brought me Zensah compression sleeves for my arms and legs!  I am so excited about this.  I remember the first time Jaimee showed up at our lunch run wearing compression socks and I nearly broke a rib laughing at her.  Wait til I show up in these…

Hot. Stuff.

The only thing that would have made Christmas better was if I could have gone for my annual Christmas morning ride on my horse.  That didn’t happen, but we did get to go for a post-dinner walk with the family!  (Confession…I wore my compression sleeves under my jeans!)
                I woke up this morning feeling really good again.  The really really bad pain I felt from the window-dangling was gone.  The normal hip pain wasn’t bad.  I did a few things around the house, waiting for the pain to show up.  It didn’t.  And that’s when I knew: Today is the first day of good things.  I don’t know how else to explain it.  I know I could face other setbacks and I’m sure I will have a lot more days of pain.  But, today was the first time I didn’t have pain every second of every minute.  Today is the day I knew I could be more active, and I wasn’t going to waste a minute of it.  Today, for the first time in probably six months, I went to the gym.
                Is there any better workout sound in the world than Florence And The Machine’s “Dog Days Are Over”?  No, there’s not.  Not only is it energizing, but the words seemed to be speaking to me.  I sprinted on the elliptical as I inhaled every word:
Happiness, hit her like a train on a track

The dog days are over
The dog days are done
The horses are coming
So you better run

Run fast for your mother run fast for your father
Run for your children for your sisters and brothers
Leave all your love and your longing behind you
Can't carry it with you if you want to survive

The dog days are over
The dog days are done
Can you hear the horses
'Cause here they come
 (Florence And The Machine Dog Days Are Over lyrics, 2011)

            I had such a good time grooving to my iPod playlist that before I knew it I had done 45 minutes on the elliptical and worked up a great sweat.  (Which caught me off guard… I was thinking, what is that weird prickly feeling on my face?  Oh…sweat!)  I took advantage of having all the machines handy and got in a full workout, including all the exercises I do at PT.  Today I didn’t feel like someone recovering from hip surgery.  Today I felt like any other gym-goer getting a good workout on the machines.  I walked out of the gym feeling really confident and immediately started planning my next activity.  And now I’m going to go home and do all the barn chores.  And then I’m going to go for a walk.  And then I’m going to brush my horse Rocco.  And then I’m going to take HIM for a walk.  And then I’m going to take the dog for a walk.  And then I’m going to ride my bike.  And then I’m going to …<<STOP!!>>  

                After mentally dope-slapping myself, I toned down my list of afternoon activities.  Well…yes, I did all the barn chores.  And I brushed Rocco, but I didn’t walk him.  I did go for a walk.  I didn’t take the dog.  And I’m not riding my bike.  (Maybe tomorrow).
                The dog days are over, people.  Today is day 1 of going in the right direction.  Now that I’ve healed enough to make the gym worth going to, I’m going to go as often as I can.  In the pursuit of health, and just as importantly: in the pursuit of happiness.
This post is dedicated to the big guy upstairs for helping my hip heal faster.  Yes, Santa, that means you!

1 comment:

  1. HIP ... HIP ... HOORAY!!! Glad you turned the corner and are on the upswing of 'the feeling of healing'!