Saturday, September 07, 2013

Doing hard things means not feeling the hard feelings...for now

Well, this is hard.  Really hard.  But I can do hard things.  At least, that is what I tell myself all day long.  "You can do hard things."  First, I'm not a small person and that makes things a little more difficult.  But, while I'm not a small person, I'm also not a weak person.  I'm actually quite strong and that has been so helpful.  Now if only I were strong and small, well, that would make a big difference.  Pretty much everything takes so much energy and work.  I told Mike he needs to take a video of me getting up the stairs so you can see what kind of effort it takes to go upstairs.  At first I really couldn't do anything on my own.  Now I can get myself to and from the bathroom, in the shower, up the stairs, and around the house.  But I still cannot do most of what I want to do and I won't be able to for six weeks.  It is so frustrating.  My body aches from using muscles I am not used to using this often.  I have to hop of one foot a lot.  The effort it takes to do things makes me not want to do them.  Who needs to shower anyway?  And I am feeling like a caged animal, unable to go anywhere or do anything.  Today I hobbled out' to the porch and sat outside for a long time just so I could be outside.

Piper is having a hardish time.  I say hardish because I think she is getting used to Mike.  The first two days she cried a lot and was pretty upset with my lack of involvement.  She would look for me everywhere.  But now she seems happy with Mike which is a relief and also kind of sad for me.  Mostly it's a relief.  I have tried to be awake when Piper and the boys are awake.  Mike puts Piper in her highchair and then I sit on the bench and feed her.  Or I have someone bring her to me and I change her diaper and clothes (though sometimes Mike does this and it is always fun to see what clothes he comes up with).  Today while Mike was at the store I had the boys come in the kitchen and help me make dinner.  They brought me a cutting board and knife and I had them choose ingredients for our fruit salad and they would fetch the ingredients and I'd cut and dump them in the bowl.  And when they get home from school I am awake and available for at least talking or checking homework.  That has been hard for me be awake because I've been so exhausted, barely able to keep my eyes open.  But today I have been less tired, so that is good.  I haven't been much help getting the kids ready for school though.  It take so much time and effort to get out of bed and downstairs that Mike has gotten the boys ready each morning without me.

Mike is stressed and that makes me sad.  He was already really stressed at work but now he has all of the house to take care of too.  He's been wonderful and I wish I could help him more but physically I just can't.  I am sure that when our nephew Stephen gets here tomorrow Mike will let out a huge sigh of relief.  I was hoping that I'd be able to do more by the time Stephen got here but I won't.  That makes me more stressed.  But we will just do what we have to do and I'm sure Stephen will be such a good help.

I have exercises to do for my knee twice a day and a weird knee bending machine I have to use for eight hours a day and an ice machine, that I do not use enough.  The knee bending machine gets used at night a lot.  I put it on when I got to bed and then I fall asleep with it bending back and forth.  The guy that brought the machine said to start it on 30 but the doctor said anywhere between 30 and 70 was good.  Today I was able to get it to 80 for about two hours so I guess that is a good sign.  I haven't had any medicine since 9 PM last night except for some tylenol this morning because my head was throbbing.  Really, I'm not in much pain, just mostly achey and sore all over.  And stiff, my leg is really stiff.  

I start physical therapy on Monday.  It's twice a week for awhile and then once a week.  Anyway, like I said, this is hard.  It is hard for me to be dependent on everyone and not be able to do almost anything on my own.  It's hard for me to not be able to pick Piper up when she falls or to know that Mike is stressed from all the increase of responsibilities.  It's hard for me to see the boys getting frustrated with the extra things they have to do.  Even though I know that it's good for them to know that as part of our family they need to help more when help is required, it's still hard for me to make them do it.  It's hard to want to just walk across the room to grab a drink of water and instead I have to ask someone to fetch it for me.  It's irritating, hard, and humbling.

It's only been three days and really, I need to give myself some credit for what I can do already in three days.  And I lack patience so this is a good lesson for me to learn.  I have yet to break down in tears, though they never seem very far away.  I just think if I start crying, I might not stop.  I'm trying not to be mad at my horrible luck and look for the positive.

And really, it's nice to have a leg.  I really appreciate this body of mine.  Even if it is achey, fatish, and broken.

Being completely honest, I think I've suppressed most of my feelings in regards to this injury.  Every so often I begin to feel something like anger, sorrow, self-pity, and other like feelings.  But I think I'm afraid to confront them and really, I don't think there is time right now to feel them.  Right now my mind needs to be focused on mending and getting my family and myself through these six weeks as happily and as smoothly as possible.

I'll let you know how that goes...


The Duke said...

I'm proud of you. By the end of the six weeks using crutches, you will read this post and realize how much learned to do through this time while having to use crutches. It comes a little at a time. You are right that it takes patience and humility but you must not be afraid to ask for help. This too will end. And you will be better in more ways than just a better knee.
Why this had to happen to you I don't know, but we live in a mortal world and mortal things happen to us. It's how we handle it that counts and I would say you are rising to the occasion beautifully. (And it's ok to cry once in a while.)
One thing I've learned.... while we may feel anger, it doesn't really help us or accomplish anything. It is what it is. So go forward just like you are and before you know it, the experience will be over and you will rejoice and move on.
I'm truly proud of you.

Katrina said...

Adrianne! My heart aches for what you are going through. I just had a severe ankle sprain and had to be on crutches/non weight bearing for only 3 days, but it was AWFUL. I broke down in tears after two days. So you are WAY strong! I will pray for you guys and make sure to have lots of friends over to talk with. It helps a TON. The best day I had on crutches was when a friend stopped by and just visited for a couple hours. :-)