I’ve noticed something about me that’s become part of who I am these days. When faced with very serious life challenges I become inertly quiet and block out everything, catatonic in a sense. It’s a defense mechanism to protect myself from godforsaken fear. I’m not ignoring you, really I’m not. I’m still processing what I have to do to do an inner talk to chase away the fear.
After my stroke, which really changes you in many ways – mine I think for the better – you reassess everything. The fear crept in when things happened physically that I could not anticipate nor control at that moment in time. The fear of losing everything, the fear of death, the fear of a lost future, the loss of the capacity to be the person I was, and the fear of facing the future to change a lifestyle that was in need of a serious overhaul. I was not done with my life.
Well we’re over that now but that’s when it happened, the catatonic process of shutting out the world to conquer fear. Maybe that’s what I needed and did not know how to conquer a fear I had never faced.
So, enter Dr. James Bresch. I heart this guy. We had a very serious discussion about double knee replacement yesterday with my hubby sitting next to me. We’re going forward because now it’s a quality of life thing. A little about the good Doctor – he’s almost part of the family now. He performed three of my son’s surgeries and has been my BFF with cortisone shots for the last three years. His capacity to explain the process is technical while sensitive to patient reactions. He’s a compassionate man who wants to do what is best for you. He’s VERY technologically up to speed to make the shortest rehab possible. He’s very up front with you too. He’s using the Journey Knee – the knee for active women together with the Visionaire Patient Matched Instrumentation technology to make the iplement as close to my orginal terrain of my knee.
I asked all the questions I had been mentally thinking about, while Sal asked other questions. There was one that popped up after looking at the replica of the knee that I did not anticipate.
Me: “What happens to that tendon when you replace the two sections you’re talking about?”
Dr. B: “That is a very good question. That’s the ACL and it’ll be removed. The replacement piece, which is made of the world’s hardest substance, will take its place.”
Me: “Is that what hurts the most?”
Dr. B: “No, it’s when I have to bend your knee back to create your new knee.”
Me mentally, “Why did I ask that question?”
So, it’s on. It’ll take six to seven weeks of prep time before the surgery. MRI’s, my doctor, the making of the parts, getting in the gym to develop my core and upper body muscles more so I can lift my legs better afterwards. But the essential thing is the support system I have. My husband is the best. He just gets this stuff. My friends and family are SO supportive because they know that “Thor” can come out at any time during this process.
I do feel better about this today. I was given two shots of cortisone to get through the next six weeks because we have a law school graduation to get through with all the planning and a dozen little birthday parties, home redecorating, gardening…and the list goes on. Life happens. It’s one day at a time.