I am still NWB for two more weeks. My foot is now in the neutral position, however, and I can imagine stepping on it again. I still can’t quite imagine running for the first time but I am sure that will come in time.
My doctor was pleased with the way my incisions are healing. I am even getting used to the “improvement”, though they still look a bit gory with the scabs. He took off the bandages today before the last cast went on. If you want pictures, go here. My foot felt numb again when the cast came off but apparently that is normal. I have feeling in my foot so it is healing ok. I can also push down with my toes – another good thing. And I don’t have any pain to speak of.
Today I asked when I could bike again. At first he said I could try one legged biking but then changed it to wait two weeks until you are in a boot. I was biking with my boot before the surgery. It is a little odd but it works. I may be back in the same boot I was in before surgery but that will be decided on December 29. Once in the boot I will be PWB (partial weight bearing) and will have to use crutches. The knee walker will go back to St. Vincent’s. I’m not really looking forward to crutches but I am looking forward to progress. I did not ask about swimming today but I expect that will be after I am in the boot and the incision looks totally healed. The heater at the pool is broken right now so I am not feeling too bad about not being able to swim.
Work, work, work
If I didn’t have to go back to work then I would probably be out until January but I can’t afford to be on unpaid leave. I’ll go back tomorrow for part of the day because I have a meeting that I feel like I need to attend. Then next week I will go to work “as tolerated”. Fortunately there are only three days next week until break, which is 12 days this year. Campus should be pretty quiet and lots of my faculty are actually already off or will be off in the next few days. I’ll have time to let my computer catch up on the updates it has missed over the last six weeks and sync my email so all the messages I have deleted will actually disappear.
I have discovered that old habits can certainly reappear. Since I have spent a lot of time sitting, reading, and beginning to write papers for classes I have discovered that the bad old grad school study habits have crept in – lots of coffee and snacks when I am writing or studying. I have been working on not giving in. The good thing is that I can’t move much so I can’t go get a snack to distract me. I have been, or was, drinking too much coffee again for a few weeks. Two or three voices kept popping in my head though telling me not to drink so much coffee. (You should know who you are.) I’ve reduced my coffee consumption back to about 2 cups a day instead of two pots a day. Just to make sure I was ok though I went to have my blood pressure checked the other day. It was fine, even after having coffee in the morning.
One good thing is that I can’t get to Starbucks very easily. I tried once and that was enough. The handicapped ramp is half way down the block, the doors are not accessible, and the store is pretty tight on a knee walker. Then I had to try to carry a grande Peppermint Mocha. It wasn’t worth the effort. I have had a pound of Christmas blend at home so I have not been totally without Starbucks. I have concluded that I can do without it though. The money I have saved paid for the knee walker – how sad is that? I have made it into Panera a couple of times but I rarely drink coffee there. After calculating how many points my favorite salad is I may not be back there much either. Sneaky little ingredients add up quickly. Barnes and Noble is also an option for Starbucks but I really have lost my desire and taste for it for the most part. I’m not sad to let this go. I have given up coffee in the past when I was told that I needed to do so and I have gone for periods of time drinking decaf. I have been drinking real coffee again for most of the year. I may just give it up again though.
Queen of push ups
By my calculations I have done close to, if not over, 900 push ups in the past few weeks. I really do think that is more than I had done in my entire life up to this point. I really did not think I could do push ups at all but once again Sam has challenged me with something and has shown me that I can do it. We are working on modified push ups, obviously, since I can’t put weight on my left foot right now. Once I am able to put weight on it and we are sure I am healed, I will be doing full push ups. I love goals.
I’ve spent a fair amount of time on the arm bike. I don’t really hate it. I don’t really hate anything I try to do. It only frustrates me because I can’t bike right now. I am only two weeks away from being able to get back on the stationary bike though. I imagine it will feel odd for a while and I will be cautious and careful. I have read too many stories on the Achilles Blog about people who have rushed and have re-injured themselves. I do not want to do that.
It is surprising how much I can do without being able to put weight on my foot. Some things are a bit awkward but I think we are probably doing some work that we might not have if I hadn’t gotten hurt. I could be totally wrong about that, of course. Since I started wheeling around on the knee walker it has become more obvious to me how weak my back is. That is one thing that I have been working on. Another is core strength. I am hoping that I am better and stronger in the long run for all the work I am doing right now.
I was feeling somewhat discouraged for a while but I am over that too. I had to think about some things and had to realized exactly how far I have come in the past few years. It takes time to process change so having a few weeks off where I have not been rushed has helped me think about many things. Some of this relates to the last post about having to cancel races. In the grand scheme of things that isn’t really important. I know I will be back to racing and to triathlons sooner than I think. I want to be smart about when I go back and not worry so much about time as I do about making sure I am healed and that I take care of myself the best I can. (Again, I don’t want to be posting on Achilles Blog that I have to have surgery on my left foot again because I re-injured myself.) I know that I have people who will help me with this and who will tell me if I’m not ready to do something.
That’s about all I have time for today. I’ll be posting more soon.