Tomorrow marks 11 weeks from the LPAO surgery. Time ticked so slow in the beginning, now seems to move rather quickly. My progress is back and forth. Last week was pretty good, this week not so much. I went to a parade with my kids and Dad last Sunday and stood for the better part of an hour and a half (due to the chairs we had were poorly supportive and hurt my SI joint/hips/pelvis even worse) and my body got overwhelmed and basically all the muscles around the hip freaked out and shut down. I was a miserable mess and realized I had pushed my limits too far that day. I had PT Monday and felt a little better, so I pushed through a bunch of exercises and felt ok; however later that night my body re-shut itself down again, nerve pain flared up, and stayed that way Tuesday as well. Wednesday morning I had an appointment with my old chiropractor who does ART, and he basically confirmed what I already knew, I was a hot mess. He released a bunch of muscles all around the hip complex on the operated side, as well as some on the non-operated side (since that side tightens constantly to protect the joint due to the labral tear and instability I have in that hip still). Afterwards my legs felt like jelly and I realized that the only way I had been able to walk was by hanging out on my ligaments and forcing my tight muscles to move in poor compensatory patterns. I took the kids to an indoor playland after that because it was rainy and they were restless (inside of a local church that opens its doors for kids to play for free) and they had a blast. I laid outside in the hallway across a couple of chairs and watched them through the glass, was just in too much pain to be in a room full of screaming, running kids. Plus I was in no shape to sit. Regardless the kids had fun and didn’t seem to mind mommy “lounging” in the hallway. Today I saw my PT again and told him how I’ve been the last few days and we modified our plan today to take it back a notch since my body has not responded well this past week. We agreed to just take it session by session as to how much I can tolerate. I need to strengthen, but not so much where my body gets overwhelmed and muscles shut down. Once muscles shut down on me, it’s not a matter of rest and stretching. I am very flexible and stretching on me even at extreme ranges of motion only stretches my ligaments/joints and not really the muscle. We are going to add in some more soft tissue work, and I think I’ll continue to do some ART as well mixed in. I’ve had a ton of it in the past and it was only temporary relief, but I’m hoping that is because the joint was unstable and the muscles continued to react to that and re-tighten. Now that the joint is fixed they need to be “reprogrammed” I think through strengthening, and then releasing when tight. We’ll see, it’s all trial and error I suppose. As I mentioned I continue to have nerve issues down both legs (pretty sure due to piriformis tightening and compressing sciatic nerve at times, but also have a different nerve pain down just left leg). My PT said not to rule out back issues, but we really won’t know until both hips are fixed and rehab. I do feel my SI joint is unstable on the left (had previous experience with that from a back injury 10 years ago), and have been researching that as well, and it fits many of my symptoms, including nerve pain. All I can do however is fix one thing at a time, try and be patient (easier said than done) and modify my lifestyle until either a.)we get to the root of all problems and get them correctly or b.)get to the root of all problems and see if there will be some permanent limitations in my life. Yago is wonderful with me, as I often freak myself out at the “what if’s” and he talks down my anxiety levels most of the time. I love him, he’s a wonderful husband and has been so patient through this whole journey. He told me today to try and focus on what I can do instead of what I can’t do and what I want to do. There’s not much on the list of what I can do, trying to find a few things that I enjoy doing solo and a few things I can do with the kids that doesn’t involve much standing or walking (not easy with VERY active 4 and 6 year old!!). I try not to wallow in self pity, I know it’s no good for me mentally. I read an incredible blog today by a girl who is 23 and had hip surgeries, knee surgeries, shoulder surgery, back problems, EDS, and a variety of problems associated with that. She was a competitive athlete who had to give up her sport due to her physical condition. She talked about how she has the choice to live in anger and depression or to live and be happy in whatever way she can each day. It was so inspirational to me, so young, so limited, yet seems so happy. I know the Bible talks about giving thanks and being grateful in ALL circumstances, and that’s easy to read, tell someone, and to do when things are going well, but not so easy when things are not going well. I’m going to challenge myself this next week to not cry and have self pity for 1 week. I’m putting it on here because I’ll have to be more accountable if others know that’s my goal. I am going to try really, really hard, even if it’s an awful pain day to not be negative, anxious, or depressed, but I know it’s only by God’s power that I can make it through a week without those feelings. Phillipians 4:13 “For I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength.” If you read this, say a prayer for that for me please, and I’ll let you know next week (honestly too) whether I am able to follow through with this goal.
On another note I am making progress with my hip range of motion and am attaching a couple of photos of what I can do now, not necessarily “pain free” but getting there:) I also am including the most recent scar pic. It seems to constantly change, now it’s getting uglier, puffy and red (my surgeon warned of this though for the first 6 months), but I am not ashamed of it. It a scar from the battlefield I walk through, it reminds me that life is not “perfect” and that it can change quite quickly. I remember sitting in my house a few months after we moved back to Ohio (to be close with family), seeing the beautiful landscape, my kids playing happily, thinking how I found the perfect job, how my husband was so blessed to keep his job and work from home, how everything was just “perfect,” which is what I always was striving for. A couple of months after that the chronic pain journey began and I realize now how naïve I was to believe perfection could be found here on Earth. Perfection can only be found in God above, and happiness needs to come from him and from within, because worldly things, possessions, people, even health can be given to us quickly, but also can be taken quickly. I’m working on that concept, happiness from God, happiness and joy from within, and acceptance of what is. Thank you for reading:) Pics posted below: