October 22, 2019
The Surgeon Is Happy I'm Happy
Stella and I started our day a little before 5:30am. Heidi is slowly moving into her winter mode and sleeping later each day. She may have been back on her dog bed sawing logs as they say, but Stella was wide awake and was demanding breakfast kibble. It didn't matter that it was before sunrise and it didn't matter that Heidi wasn't standing beside her ... she wanted food and she wanted it now.
I followed the daily procedure though and she didn't eat until Heidi finally walked into the kitchen a little after 7:00am. I never get tired of seeing the sun rise over the Mule Mountains and gradually move west to where the horizon that borders my fence lights up. It is a great way to start the day.
It was going to be a big day today, an important day ... I had my 6 week appointment with my surgeon and a new updated set of x-rays. For once I had some things to do in the morning that could get me through to 1:00 pm. To say the least, I was a little anxious to talk to him and see what my next plan would be.
I spent my first hour at Best Buy as they tried to move my account to a new iPhone ... the iPhone 11 Pro Max. The only thing different in this transaction it was just THREE days ago I was doing the same process to get the iPhone 11 Pro ... too small. It bothered me. It was (point) .3" larger than my big 8+ but it felt small. Old eyes need bigger screens, if you know what I mean. Little did I know that a few friends scattered around the old USA was going through the same decision process on whether to go back to big or move to small or stay with what they had in their iPhone.
While Stella was left in her crate I left the patio door open so Heidi could enjoy the outside. When I walked in a few hours later, it would have been a great photo. She was sound to sleep on the patio laying in the sun just like any basset hound would. About the time I got the camera in position, she heard me and woke up, walking inside. A missed opportunity.
This is their normal post-breakfast position ... fat and happy in the computer room.
I walked into the lobby of the doctors office 20 minutes before my appointment. It took 25 minutes to finally get checked in because in the era of computers, data entry and all that other crap ... like "attention to detail" ... they had no record of my appointment. They did when I reached into my wallet and handed her the card that she filled out one month ago. "Look familiar?"
About 30 minutes after that I was called for some fresh new x-rays. I wish I could stand next to the doctor and look at them at the same time he does. I'd just be happy to see them sometime, day or night. I went back outside in the lobby to wait another 29 minutes before my name was called to see the doctor. Nurse first, doctor second ... throw another 10 minutes of waiting before he walked in.
I admit that I followed the suggestion of a friend and blog reader ... take my cane with me to show them I was following the rules. With my sick sense of humor I walked off the elevator into the crowded waiting room with the cane on my shoulder with a walk of a fully rehabbed patient. Yes, being a jerk at times is part of my DNA.
The report was short and sweet until I asked him if he minded if I ask some questions ... located in the "Notes" program on my phone.
1. How many pounds can I left if I am not having to squat ... such as a 40 lb bag of dog food.
- "you can lift as much as you want as long as your feet and knee is pointing straight"
2. Can I start riding my bicycle indoors on a trainer?
- "yes, you can ride your bike. Listen to your body"
- "with your riding experience you will know what you can and cannot do."
3. Can I use resistance bands to start upper body exercises?
- " you can do all the exercises you want for upper body strength, including weights"
He told me that I no longer have any restrictions. I can do everything I normally do. "Your x-rays look great and your hip looks great" BUT there are two things you cannot do ... "twisting of any kind and be sure to watch your knee or leg, that you are not twisting it or turning it in."
I mentioned to him some of the issues I had in the past, how I felt on the good days and how I was trying to walk for longer distances. He was all for that. He told me he wanted me to keep walking a lot and there were a couple of exercises he wanted me to do.
1. Standing, balance yourself with your hand on a wall or counter, stand up straight and swing your straight leg out to the side .. "do a million of those per day and when you reach a million do a million more" ... I got the message.
2. I waited for the 2nd one ... he said two of them .... there was nothing else except to walk as much as possible ... "ride your bike as much as you want".
I can do all normal activity from now on. Yes, there will be some soreness and like he said for the next 6 months I will see rapid improvement but there will still be bad days. It should be an interesting trip with notes like that.
"You don't need to use your cane anymore."
That was good to hear, I was tired of faking it.
So I can see that hiking some of these trails in the area are on top of the list. The hikes may not last long but at least I'll be out in the country with the phone camera in hand and not on neighborhood sidewalks or doing laps around the backyard. Although ... I like walking laps for 10 minutes or so.
I was happy with the news. I was happy to hear the hip looked good on the x-rays. It was Day 44 today and got a clean bill of health I guess. Now it's time to get those muscles back in shape slowly but surely. I was happy I can lift the 40 lb bag of dog food, that I can now bend over to pet Heidi, clean dog ears and eventually cut hound toe nails.
Ironically today was the first day I was able to put on my right sock and tie my right shoe without some pain in the hip. Since I can now bend over past 90° I can do some exercises to make that move much easier and the soreness will eventually go away.
It was a great day in the Wild West today.