I’ll be honest and raw here. Week 2 has been hell. From chatting with people personally and not judging from fluffed-up Facebook posts, week 2 seems to be when the crap hits the fan and you wonder “what the heck did I get myself into??” The doubts have crept in, I am having to fight the strong urge to panic.
The reason? Rialto fusion is a cutting-edge miracle fusion compared to the others currently available. Yes, I am able to walk unassisted since 3 days post-op. Yes, I can sit Indian-style on the floor. But this is where the ugly word “expectations” comes in. Despite this being a minimally invasive, 30-minute surgery…this is still MAJOR surgery and I seemed to have forgotten that until now. I foolishly expected to be able to go back to work the second week. I expected to have the ability to run by 6 weeks but would wisely choose not to. Dumb, I know, but you don’t really realize what your true expectations are until you’re hit with the Reality Slap Stick. Fetty-Wap! Upside the head.
I sat at my computer desk for a few hours trying to get some writing in and various online errands I needed to complete and I was like “I got this!” No problems. Until I got up. I felt like I had a sharp knife stabbing into my joint with every slight turn or step and my now-usual limp became a holding-onto-the-walls crawl. For like two days. I totally understand what they mean by one step forward, two back, etc. I pay when I overdo it. I sent an email to my doctor explaining what happened and if that was normal and he told me I was a spaz. He’s right.
Make sure your surgeons “gets” you. I need a doctor who will tell me I’m a spaz to remind me I’m an idiot for thinking I can sit for hours upright in a chair and not hurt. Or that this will be easy. [pullquote align=”left” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]This fusion ain’t for sissies.[/pullquote]
Now my left si joint (non-fused side) is starting to kill me. I can’t tell if it’s the actual joint or the muscle, but either way I’m having trouble sleeping because the left side of my body is compensating for this terrible limp I have and it’s not. happy.
So I am here. Fighting panic. Fighting the anger that I shouldn’t have done this (even though I had no other options left). Trying to remind myself that this is extremely temporary in comparison to the rest of my life, NORMAL, and I need to let go of those pesky expectations and go with it. I’m eternally grateful for the online friends I’ve made who are a few or several steps ahead in this recovery process who keep telling me it’s normal, I’m doing good, just hang in there.
Tomorrow will be better, it usually is after a “bad pain” day. Will probably help when my refill for pain medication shows up in the mail and I can think somewhat clearly again without pain sparks lighting up my vision – physical AND spiritual.
If you are planning on fusion anytime soon, please remember this: Regardless of which fusion method you choose (and please, please choose wisely!!), it’s still screws or rods drilled into your bones. You have no freaking idea what your recovery will look like. You are at the mercy of the Recovery Beast. So plan for it… and know that Week 2 is probably the hump of all humps on your way to total healing.
But we’ll get there.
P.S. “Baby that butt!” as my online friend says.