I saw a show on TV once about a woman who had her bottom half amputated due to an injury and yet, she was a mother. I have no idea how people do it. People who lose limbs in war or other accidents are far stronger than I.
On Friday, I went into the hospital around 8:00 AM and by 11:50, I was having carpal tunnel and ulnar nerve surgery. Everything went well; I woke up feeling pretty good and I was never nauseous, though the nurses asked repeatedly. Ash was back in the recovery room when I got back, and about an hour later I got to go home. Some of the details are fuzzy, but my mother showed up around 3:30 to help. I don’t think I took into account how much more difficult it would be to have my elbow also operated on. This is obvious now; it is almost impossible to use my left arm, whereas last time I could still use my arm but just not my hand.
The biggest difficulties are changing the baby, getting her in and out of seats, and putting on my bra. On Saturday, my mom and I went and got pedicures and ran some errands but I didn’t realize how tired I was going to be. The biggest problem I have is sitting back and letting people help. This became evident on Sunday morning when I requested that Ash take me to the store while my mother stayed home with the kids but he didn’t really want to because he had to run and it was also raining. He didn’t understand why we couldn’t do it later, which was totally true. I was being stupid in that I wanted to go right now and I didn’t take into account that people wanted to be doing other things. Once I took a step back and let people do things, all problems were solved.
I’m back to work today; the morning went pretty well, except that I forgot my main bag with my wallet and had to go back to get it. I’m using the Windows seven speech recognition program to write this because typing with one hand is exceedingly slow and that irritates me. The next week and a half are going to be pretty difficult, but I’m sure it will be over before I know it. Every day I have felt a little bit better, and I have definitely regained use of my fingers. I can almost put my hair back now, but the pressure from the hairtie does hurt a little bit. My elbow hurts most of all. On my hand are regular sutures that come out on the 31st, but on my elbow they used the staples that dissolve on the inside, and that dermabond glue. That is what they used when I had my appendectomy, and it’s pretty neat how you don’t have to do anything; everything just fades away. Sometimes I wonder if I shouldn’t have waited a little bit longer, but it’s a pay me now or pay me later type situation. Had I waited, I would’ve been in pain anyway. Best just to get these things out of the way. At the end of the two weeks, I will be mostly back to normal; at least I’ll be able to pick up the baby.
It has been a humbling experience to have to let others do things than I normally do, and understand that they will never do them the same way but they will still get them done. I plan to go by the store this afternoon and I know I can get it done, but it will be a slow process. And I may even have to let the bagboy take the stuff to my car, which I always reject because I don’t want to make them do extra work than I can clearly do.
I’m kind of glad that I have had to go through challenging things now and then – like pregnancies, childbirth, and surgeries – because they have made me very grateful for every single thing that I have: a body that is able to perform at a high level, my friends and family who help, and just the world around us. Today, what are you thankful for that you tend to take for granted?