Tag Archives: recovery

Post-Op Roller Coaster

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Wednesday marked three weeks since my back surgery. Somehow it’s only been three weeks and it’s already been three weeks at the same time. I’m not doing as good of a job as I thought I would being positive. I’m impatient.

I went back to work last week Tuesday. I meant to go in only a couple of hours, but ended up there for six. I even got on the treadmill that night. Don’t worry, I hadn’t planned on pushing it. I walked just one mile.

And it took me 25 minutes.

That’s right, I was pushing myself to walk 2.5 miles per hour. Rough. But I told myself that I’d continue to do it everyday since walking is supposed to make my back stronger.

But I didn’t. I think that that pace and time may have even been too  much to start. I followed up the rest of the week working five to six hours each days. The sad part? I work at a desk all day, but by the time I got home, I was exhausted.

Physically exhausted. Every night.

The week was rougher than I expected. When I was at home, I felt like I should have been  outdoing so much more… that I felt okay, just a little sore. But then, when I’d leave the house, it just seemed to be too much. I have to remind myself that I feel much better than I did even one week ago. That this is progress. That I should be grateful.

Also, I think I tried to stop my meds too soon. I didn’t want to become dependent on them. I didn’t want to run out and worried that they might not give me another refill. What kind of thinking is that?! By the time I run out, I’d be feeling better than I am now, right? My husband and friends reminded me that I have them for a reason. So I stopped fretting about that. And in the last few days, I’ve tapered off a little bit each day naturally. Now I’m just taking them at night. Silly worry.

I think the hardest part, though, right now is that I look fine to everyone else, so I feel like I should be fine all the time. I can walk normally now – YAY! So I feel like I should be able to move and do just about anything. But instead, I still have a hard time focusing at work and I’ve gone in late a couple of days due to lack of sleep. The pain I have is not nearly as bad, but it is a different kind of pain.

My biggest problem right now may be my mental state.

It’s frustrating that while I can walk, shower, sit, stand and lie down on both my back and side now, that there are still so many things that I can’t do. I attempted the treadmill again tonight  and put the speed on 2.0. It took  me 30 minutes to walk a whole mile. And it was still difficult – over one week later.

Instead, I need to be grateful.

I need to remember that this is just the beginning. I’m going to start charting my walking so that I can see my progress. I think that will help. I need to focus on what I can do. Maybe I should note those things, too. I need to take things slowly and realize that this is a process. While progress is slow, it’s still progress. I’m just anxious and impatient! And the fact that spring is taking so long to come around these parts doesn’t help all that much either.

Phil, you were oh-so-wrong!

So I found a couple of quotes to help get me through this roller coaster of emotions and physical capabilities. Here are a few of my favorites.

Q-Strength

And I think my favorite:

“Healing is a matter of time, but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity.”

~Hipprocrates

~

What kinds of opportunities have you experienced during challenges or times of healing?

To Your Health~

Carrie

Day 1 – Post Surgery Food Journal

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I tried to make Day 1 post-surgery an easy and high fiber day!

Breakfast

1 slice whole wheat bread with peanut butter

apple slices {Thanks, Helen!}

Snack

2 pita triangles and 1/2 sliced cucumber with hummus

Lunch

You know how I had black bean burgers on my post-op foods list? Well, I wasn’t exactly in the condition to bend and put something in the oven. Luckily, Rob had to stay with me for 24 hours following the surgery, so he was my helping hand. Besides, I could put some Nathan’s Beef Franks in a Blanket on the same baking sheet for Rob. {I had one. They are bite-sized pieces of yumminess!}

Chipotle Black Bean Burger

This is a Morningstar Chipotle Black Bean Burger with Wholly Guacamole on a Thomas Everything Bagel Thin with a side of grape tomatoes and a drizzle of reduced balsamic glaze that won me over when I made the Avocado-Balsamic Mozzarella Chicken.

Snacks

Clementine

Dove Sea Salt Caramel Dark Chocolate

Dinner

Stacy’s Egg Sandwiches! My friend Stacy made me some egg, cheese and spinach sandwiches on English muffins. She foil wrapped them and put them in a bag for me to put in my freezer. All I had to do is reheat one in the oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Thank you, Stacy!

Day 1 - egg

Sack of pre-made English Mufffin Egg, Spinach & Cheese Sandwiches

I asked Rob to put one in the oven for me after it pre-heated and had him to pull it out, too, thirty minutes later. I enjoyed the Egg, Spinach and Cheese English Muffin Sandwich with some strips of green bell pepper and hummus. I also had a few pita triangles (not pictured).

Day 1 - dinner

Snacks

I enjoyed some popcorn my favorite way. Only I was all out of our Costco shredded Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, so I had to use the stuff in the green can instead. Not as good, but I was still satisfied.

Oh! And water. Lots of water. I counted about 13 cups and my mouth is still dry.

The pain actually got worse toward the evening and I went to bed early. I’m trying to get up and walk as much as possible, but know I need to rest, too.

I honestly don’t know how long this food journal will continue. It all depends on timing, how I feel, etc. I’m really glad I stocked up on a variety of foods to not only keep things interesting, but also healthy. Planning ahead always works, no matter what in what point of life you are!

What’s your best plan ahead meal tip?

Cheers~

Carrie