Week 3 Update: A Corner Turned

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3-weeks Post-Surgical Update. 2-days ago I had 32 staples removed. Shawn, being the goofball that he is, asked if I was going to bring the staples home to make into a necklace…uh nope! I thought after the surgery I went through that they would be a mere mosquito bite coming out. Oh, HELL no…I was SO wrong. Those little suckers hurt, especially where there was “grow over” as the nurse called it. After the first one had me panting like I was in labor, she asked about using the cold freeze spray. Sure, why not—I’ve had it before for IVs. Yeah, what I didn’t count on was that spray FREEZING THE STAPLES! Rather uncomfortable having frozen bits of metal in your skin. I’m glad I opted to sit down rather than stand while they came out. Otherwise, I might have embarrassed myself by winding up on the floor. Other than that, my first follow-up appointment went well. The incision looks great, though I do have a large seroma on one side of the incision. But what is a seroma? It’s a pocket of clear serous fluid that sometimes develops in the body after surgery. This fluid is composed of blood plasma that has seeped out of ruptured small blood vessels and the inflammatory fluid produced by injured and dying cells. It’s perfectly normal and will dissipate in time. What is also normal is the leg pain, exhaustion, and emotional roller coaster issues I am having. I explained that I would really like to be done with the pain meds…it’s just the nighttime leg pain that keeps me tethered. As explained by the RN, this is all normal for the extent and size of the surgery I had. It’s only been 2 weeks so calm down and not rush the healing was her advice. I am cleared to now start the simple stretching exercises given at discharge as well as starting ice/heat treatments, but not cleared to wean from the walker. She also said I was doing great when we talked about my daily activity level, which is more advanced than some patients. Stubbornness comes in handy I suppose.

This week: I painted my nails and put on minimal make-up TWICE. My appetite is still hit or miss, but craving a grilled cheese sandwich, I was able to make it myself. 2-days ago, the leg pain was enough that it was waking me up at night and that was the only reason I was taking the narcotic. Every night for over a week, it was leg pain that woke me up and kept me away for 2-3 hours. Last night was the first night I was able to not take pain meds. I woke upin the middle of the night, yes, but not because of leg pain. It was my bladder, which is typical. While I was awake for a bit, perhaps an hour, I didn’t have to get out of bed to walk around the house. I simply put headphones on and listened to my “Just Chilling” playlist. It worked and this morning I feel better than I have since surgery. Perhaps this is a corner turned in the recovery process. Upward and onward from here!

***Pictures below. Do NOT scroll past the nails if you are squeamish.



Avie Layne 2012