Thursday, April 4, 2013

3 weeks post-op

Please consider donating to my medical expense fund.  Surgery is expensive.  So is recovery!   Thank you so much to everyone that has donated!  This wouldn't be possible without your help!!!


Today marks 3 weeks since my operation.  Yesterday, I got out of the house for the first time--went to Portillo's for dinner with my mom and stepdad.  There's a lot of sensory overload in the outside world, but it was really good to get out.  This would have been inconceivable just one week earlier, when I was barely conscious all day, wondering if I would ever be well enough to get out of the hospital and get back home.

Today, my mom washed my hair--carefully, with the bandage covering up the incision.  The stitches are still in for one more week.  Can't wait to get them out!

I've been gradually building up the amount of active time each day.  I have to be so careful, because if I overdo it, especially in the early hours of the day, I pay for it later with reduced consciousness.  But I have started getting some things for myself (some of my food and water refills).  I've also gradually built up my time on the recumbent bike.  Today I rode for 11 minutes, two times.

My tachycardia is improving very gradually.  But my blood pressure has been stable since discontinuing all muscle relaxants on Tuesday.  That means I've been conscious all day for three full days!  :)  I'm not saying I'm 100% alert all day, or that I would make a great conversationalist at noon.  But, I'm awake, aware of my surroundings, and able to respond when called all day.  (This is with the help of Midodrine and Florinef, along with salt pills, to keep my blood pressure up.)

The muscle tightness in my neck and shoulders is still problematic, and quite painful.  I haven't had a full-blown migraine since Sunday.  Just migraine-like pains from the muscle contractures.  I'm trying to arrange to have dry needling sessions in May to alleviate this.  Until then, it's heat packs, icy hot, and massages.

I've been noticing that I sometimes have started swallowing air with my water again.  I'm trying to ignore this fact for now.

The most difficult thing has been that my beloved dog, Jango, has become very sick, suddenly.  He has some neurological symptoms, and he frequently cries out in pain.  I have cried most of the day today, because it is so hard to watch my happy little buddy become so miserable.  We know there isn't much time left for him.  Watching Jango in pain gives me even more appreciation for my caregivers.  Watching someone you love suffer is so painful.  And my caregivers are amazing!  I am so lucky to have such wonderful support.

I am also grateful every single day that I survived this whole ordeal.  This hospital stay did some damage to me, physically and psychologically.  But healing is possible.  I will get stronger.  The psychological wounds may take a bit more time to heal...

Sorry to end on a down note.  I am an emotional wreck.  But I am so happy to see little improvements in myself each day.  Recovery is slow, as expected, but improvements are still noticeable.