Thursday, April 16, 2015

Nat Finds Her Rainbow!

After 129 days of zero running, I found my rainbow today.

I found an awesome surgeon with wonderful people taking care of me...

I am FINALLY, FINALLY on my way to doing what I love more than anything...


Here I am post surgery and recovery getting ready to get into the wheel chair! Don't you love my outfit?!

Would you like to hear the gritty details of how the morning went down?

4:30 am - I woke up with more excitement than I have had in a long time. I don't normally wake up at 4:30 am excited about a whole lot except the thought of going back to sleep.

5:30 am - we arrive at the surgery center and I can't stop smiling!

I know when I walk get wheeled out of here in a bunch of hours, I will have a new knee and a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. The research has been done, the decisions have been made, the prayers have been said. Soon and very soon I will be RUNNING again!!

6 am - I am prepped for surgery. I go to the bathroom and then try not to think about my thirst (no water after midnight!) and impending hunger (no food after midnight!) A huge IV stuck in my hand (a little painful. Okay, a lot painful), and my leg is thoroughly scrubbed. I sign a bunch of paperwork, I talk about my medical history (pretty boring thank goodness. I feel so blessed to be healthy).
I am asked at least 40 times to verify which knee is being operated on (THE RIGHT ONE). Then, I have to draw in blue sharpie on my right knee a huge arrow and initial it. They are definitely on their game and there is no way my left knee is going to see any operating action!

6:30 am - A sweet nurse, a very kind anesthesiologist, a cool surgical fellow and a kick butt surgeon are the team members and I loved all of them. Deep breath... I'm in great hands.
We discuss the procedure again and they assure me that they will let Jerold know if they have to cut open my knee instead of just drilling two tiny holes.
Then, the sedation medication is pumped into the IV and I start to feel woozy, yet still alert and able to talk.

6:45 am - I am wheeled into the surgery room and lifted onto the operating table (I wish I had pics, but my camera had to be put away. Don't they realize I'm a blogger?! :)

6:50 am - the anesthesiologist tells me that she is going to put me to sleep and there will be a mask over part of my face as well.

7:00 am - I am out like a light (Naptime! YAY!!) and here we goooo!!

8:45 am - Suddenly, I am awake, super groggy and Jerold is right by my side. They tell me it was a huge success and that they didn't have to cut my knee open!! The tear in the cartilage was bigger than expected (an 8mm tear), yet he was able to fix the osteochondral defect and the torn cartilage by taking another piece of beautiful cartilage from a non weight bearing part of my knee and plug it in.
Boom. Done.

9 am - I get to have cranberry juice and an offer of crackers (I now have zero appetite, so I decline the crackers) and get a good look at the knee brace and some pretty cool compression socks! Bummer, they are not Pro Compression!! :)

10:30 am - It is all over!! I am released to go home. I will have to use the crutches for 2 weeks, the knee brace for 6 weeks (then I will get another knee brace for an additional 6 weeks) and I have a post op appointment next week. I take home pain medication, aspirin (to prevent blood clotting), sleeping pills so that I can rest and a medication to fight bacteria.

Let's go home!

We arrive home and all is quiet (a nice way to come home after surgery and drugs pumped into your body.) The big kiddos are at school and my Mom is home with SBG, who gives me a kiss and is off to take her nap!

Later, a man arrives on our doorstep with a machine (Continuous Passive Motion Machine) that will rotate my knee and keep it moving to prevent scar tissue from forming. I have to lie down while using it and it will have to be on 6-8 hours a day! I am allowed to break the time up into small increments so I don't have to lie down all day (3 kids = not practical!) Pictures will be coming.

My Dad joined Instgram (!) and sent me a sweet note that maybe he should change his December trip and come now...

I have been resting a lot today, but I feel really good. I feel really thankful and happy.

I love my family, I love God, I love my knee and I love running.

I finally found my rainbow and the pot of gold will come in July when I go on my first run.

That is all for now. 

My friends, I wish you happy running today and I can't wait to join you!

Happiness Is Running Life!


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