“Out with the old, in with the new ” seems to be a popular New Year’s quote (no author assigned). I think that I was magically hoping that my pain would disappear along with 2022. In fact, I did a little dance right after midnight at the start of 2023, I was trying to begin the year with a positive outlook!
On January 2nd, I woke up with my kneecap in pain again which limited my ability to walk and function. New year, and the same old pain… Despite the pain, I was determined to start on some of the things that I promised that I would get to in 2023!
First, was to rewatch Disney’s “Frozen”. I had seen most of it a few years ago, but I had a nap partway through. I wanted to see it because my granddaughter loves this movie, and at under 3 years old can sing the entire “Let it Go” song. I realized that the movie was not necessarily about letting go of an affliction or power, but about resolving conflict with love. My conflict is the pain in my kneecap, and facing the current state of disability. I am glad for the reminder of love, in this case, to love myself despite these changes to my being.
Second, was to read a book that was wisely suggested to me by Oliver Sacks called “A Leg to Stand On”. I am almost through the book. Oliver Sacks experienced an accident where he badly tore his thigh muscles, and writes vividly about his experience about no longer feeling his leg, or the existence of this leg. He goes on to describe how this became a physical, moral, and spiritual journey, and then how weeks later the leg started to make a comeback. He even talks about his initial discussion with the surgeon, and telling him that the leg doesn’t work, to which the surgeon replies “That’s not my business”.
I returned to my orthopedic surgeon a few weeks ago. He could clearly see that my knee was stuck in a bent position. He provided me with quite a bit of time, explanation of the entire surgery, and suggestions for moving forward with physiotherapy. The first few times that I met with the surgeon, he too said that the lack of my leg function was not his business. This time, he was as helpful as he could be from his perspective.
My physiotherapist was glad to get the go ahead to treat the knee more aggressively with traction. It was so painful that I nearly passed out. After a few sessions, my knee began to straighten more, which allowed me more mobility. The pain level reduced, but sleeping in the wrong position, or being on my feet for too long could reproduce the pain in the knee, as happened on January 2nd. Sleeping in the wrong position is tricky. When I go to sleep, I set up my pillows, flax bags, etc. However, I can’t help it if I move or these items move! Standing on my feet for too long is still under 10 minutes. I have not gone for a proper walk yet. My surgery was over 3 months ago.
As 2023 is well underway now, I ease forward with love and care for myself, and patience as I am recovering. My recovery seems to be slow, not a straight road, and full of pain, whether I want it or not. But I am determined to move forward this year with a positive outlook!