Tuesday, September 30, 2014

So Far, So Good

Well, that wasn't so bad. I mean, what do I know... I was sleeping the whole time. But so far, so good.

I had my ACL replacement surgery this morning. And the hardest part was being unable to eat or drink anything prior to surgery. No water -- and I was really thirsty. No coffee -- and, well, I'm me. Have you met me?

I'm what the nurses called "an O-R virgin." Somehow, I've managed to avoid any broken bones, severe sprains or anything else that would require me to be admitted to a hospital. So this was my first time getting general anesthesia. The pre-op nurses were great -- making sure I knew what was happening, answering my questions and ensuring the surgeon would be cutting into the right correct knee. My post-op nurse was wonderful too. I remember talking to the nurses, meeting with the surgeon and walking into the operating room, noticing how bright it was and... yeah, that's about it.

So what now? I'm not exactly comfortable, but in any pain. I'm sure the femoral nerve block which hasn't worn off -- basically feels like Novocaine for the leg -- is largely responsible for that. And the pain meds, which EVERYONE has told me to be sure I take. I'm not a big fan of taking pain meds, but I can't tell you how many times I've heard, "Stay ahead of it!" in the last few days. So, I will. I'm also hooked up to my constant companion, my new best friend -- this machine which pumps cold water and compression into pads wrapped around my knee, under the full leg immobilizer. 
And guys, let me just say my wife is awesome. Today hasn't just been surgery day -- it's also our 14th wedding anniversary. It's "Anniversasurgery" day. She's spent the day moving furniture around to set up the "Recovery Zone" -- I've got the ice machine, smart phones, a laptop, Playstation, books, magazines and TVs all within arms reach. There's even a window! I can't possibly get bored, can I? Stay tuned...

Today's Title: Song from a 1986 movie soundtrack that feels like it's from a 1986 movie soundtrack.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Return of the Mack (Or, at least of me... to blogging)

So, it's been awhile since I've posted anything here. Like, more than a year and a half. Don't judge me, I've been busy. Or lazy. No, I'm sticking with busy. But I need to start writing again about, um, stuff. (That's the technical term for "whatever I want to write about, whenever the mood strikes.")

For the next few weeks, I'm probably going to spend more than a few posts writing about my recovery from ACL reconstruction surgery. Surgery is tomorrow (9/30). And I'm not gonna lie, I'm a little uneasy about it. As far as I'm concerned, power tools should be purchased at Lowe's or Home Depot and be used to build things, not to drill holes in my limbs. My doctor is great and has certainly prepared me for it. But I know the recovery isn't going to be easy and definitely isn't going to be quick. I'm going to miss three weeks of work -- and spend a lot of that time on my back with my leg elevated and iced. While I'm looking forward sleeping later than usual, I'm not the most patient person and I'm usually on the go. So, what I'm saying is... this should be frustratingly fun.

Should I blame the Mets hat?

It's been a few months since the actual injury. I hurt myself in early July playing in a rec league softball game. I probably should lie and say I was scoring the game-winning run from second on a ground out, or making a game-saving diving catch. But the truth is I planted my cleat and turned my body while playing the outfield. The cleat pointed left, my knee twisted right and I felt a pop. I fell, the knee swelled and the rest is history. As my doctor says, if it weren't for old guys like me (I'm not THAT old) playing kids' games... he wouldn't have nearly as much to do.

To be honest, I've gotten used to the injury. There's still some swelling in my knee, but I can move around pretty well now. I still wear my hinged knee brace almost all the time. I don't want to take one funny step and make things worse. I can't run -- maybe I could, I haven't tried (which I'm sure my doctor appreciates) -- but I have been able to swim. So I've tried to stay as active as possible. I've been swimming, coaching my son's soccer team, etc. 

If NFL stars like Jamal Charles, Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski can do it... if NBA players like Derek Rose, Al Harrington and Baron Davis can do it, I know I'll be able to come back from this injury -- run road races again, play softball, stop limping. What? They're professional athletes and they're younger... well, sure... but... 

Today's Title: A one-hit wonder that 18 YEARS OLD!!!