Week 1 – Left Hip Replacement

What a week! I am now a Double-Hippie!

Here I am in all my ‘shiny and new’ glory (a bit wonky, but I’ll straighten out with some hard work!).

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As much as there has been the usual routine of organisation-surgery-recovery, there have already been some memorable (…and some awkward!) moments…

Leaving my dignity at the hospital door

Going through all the hip surgeries I have, really has had a humbling affect. Basically, leave all your dignity at the front door, there’s no point even getting embarrassed, what needs to be done will be and those ‘Golden Souls’ that are the nurses deserve medals for how at ease they make you feel. For those of you who haven’t experienced it, here’s a lovely little picture…

Imagine not being able to pee, I mean, you’re bursting, but you just physically can’t do it. The spinal block they gave you during surgery has yet to give you control back of your bladder. So to ‘help’, two lovely nurses whip you onto a commode and your open-backed gown is pushed to one side…  you’re essentially in your birthday suit trying to relieve yourself on a chair with a hole in it, in front of two complete strangers! (Seriously, I still couldn’t do it. The added pressure of an audience may not have helped!) So the icing on the cake…? One nurse starts rubbing your back… just in case you weren’t uncomfortable enough already!

Like I said, leave your dignity at the door. But I’ve got to hand it to her… it did work! All I could muster as a sign of gratitude, through the sheer concentration on the task at hand, was a thumbs-up. Her reply..? “Job done”. I told you, Golden Souls….

Projectile vomit that should win a distance medal

Day 1. It’s post-op. I’m trying to see straight after the anaesthetic, the dizziness not helping my nausea. That piece of dry toast looks so tempting… and I desperately want to be able to eat it… so I decide I’ll try and push through it and attempt to get some food into my body, having not eaten since the day before. Bite by bite, I can do it, I’ll get there. But the second I swallow, I know it was a mistake… it’s happening, it’s coming, there’s no stopping it. It’s then a toss-up between not pulling my new hip (ouch!) so trying to hold myself up with one hand, holding the bowl with the other… but uh-oh, I don’t have a third hand to hold back my hair…… nope, too late! My locks are now lacquered with anaesthetic-laced bile, leaving me looking like a crusty-haired scarecrow. There’s no point trying to restrict it’s velocity either, my body has decided… a battle commences, but there it goes again, flying across the room, spraying a sick-mist across everything within 2 metres… including the toast. All I can think of to say to the nurse when she comes in to rescue me, is… “I won’t be eating that now, if that’s okay, thank you…”.

Getting stuck in the kitchen

So you feel bad enough about having to rely on everyone else to do absolutely everything else. Himself having to go and sort the weekly shop I felt a fair bit of guilt about (I know how much he hates battling supermarket aisles). He returned, albeit with a forced smile bless him, to say it had all been done, announcing that he was in a little bit of a rush to use the bathroom, so leaving the shopping in the bags on the counter – and this is where, what started out as a meaningful and helpful gesture with this one little thought, ended in a very misjudged situation… “I could help unpack those bags, couldn’t I… there’s nothing wrong with my hands”. How wrong I was. I immediately abandoned one crutch against the opposite counter, as I found myself in a juggling scenario between it and a tin of chopped tomatoes, I thought “I’ll be FINE with just the one…”. But what happens when that one and final crutch loses it’s grip of your arm and falls to the floor… no more crutches left, that’s what! You’re left propping yourself up against a counter testing an upper body strength you never knew existed before. But I wasn’t going to panic, this was EASILY rectifiable… “I’ll just wait for Himself to finish what he’s doing up there and when he walks back in, casually ask him to pass me one of the crutches… nice and casual, no emergency here… okay, it might be a bit more urgent than I first thought, this ‘holding myself up’ malarkey is not as easy as I thought. Oh dear, I definitely need help here…”. Cue an almighty bellow through the ceiling where Himself was in the middle of getting some well-earned relief. “erm…. CAN YOU HELLLLP MEEEE PLEEEEEASE”. Not the greatest timing I found out… I tried my best to wait for the sound of the flush so as not to ‘interrupt’ him… but watching Himself walk into the kitchen with everything undone, I realised my stubbornness and misplaced sense of guilt had actually made things worse, not better. Oppsy! A telling off I certainly, and deservedly, got! But he couldn’t have been too mad… the cuppa that I had started out making for him for a post-shopping refreshment… was then given to me when I was sat safely in my chair! Love him…

Xandra xx