Patience

Today I’m almost 2.5 weeks post surgery and well on my way to recovery. I’ve just made it home to Baltimore from staying with my parents in NY for the past 2 weeks. I’m very lucky to have a great family who drive down from NY to take me back up to NY to recover. I’ve been a challenge as I’ve needed help with everything. Showering, changing, putting my brace on, going up and down stairs, etc. Rogue really enjoyed her time in NY as well.  She loved the big grassy yard and chasing the bunnies in the yard.

Getting some sunshine with Rogue for the first time in 10 days post surgery

Getting some sunshine with Rogue for the first time in 10 days post surgery

And even though the weather was atrocious, I’m glad I got to see my dad and other VTP athletes race at Musselman. What a great race. There were torrential downpours, strong winds and we even heard of a tornado warning. Thankfully, I was under a shelter and could cheer and stay (mostly) dry.

Running on to get second in his AG with a 5:43 on a very tough day.

My dad at 13 miles running in to second in his AG with a 5:43 on a very tough day at Musselman 70.3.

 

Recovery has been very tough, and I’ve never relied on other people more. Well, yes, when I was a baby, but that was different. I’m independent and pride myself on my self-reliance and strength. It turns out asking for help requires strength too.

Today I went to my PT, Josh Billings at NRH rehab to check in. He’s a fantastic PT, patient, kind and knowledgable. He’s stuck with me for the last year and puts up with me, so he’s a good guy. He took off my bandage for the first time (I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to or not), and said everything looks good. Yes I have swelling and pain still, but the surgical area looks healthy. He also measured my quads to see if I’ve had any atrophy. Turns out, I don’t right now. My SI joint/hip girdle is very much out of alignment, but this is to be expected. I’ve only been using my left leg, been laying on my left side and not used my ride side in weeks.  6 weeks on crutches is what I’ve been told, and tomorrow I’ll find out the next step. Today was checking in with the PT, tomorrow is checking in with the surgeon.

If things hold their course, I’ll be able to do strength exercises in another 3-4 weeks. Yes, it seems like a long time, but patience is going to be key. Initially when the surgeon thought he could go in endoscopically, the recovery was 2-4 months. I couldn’t believe it, I could be running just a few months after surgery and after spending the past 2 years in my athletic purgatory. Since he opened me up, he says the recovery can be 4-6 months. I’m not in any hurry to get back to training, as I’ve spent the past two years trying to figure this out. Now that we know what was wrong, and we have fixed it, I’m not jeopardizing my body just to get back exercising. Yes, I certainly want to get back to training, and even just doing things again (it’s hard to ask for people to carry your food to you when you can’t) on my own. But, I’ll listen to my body, take one day at a time, and do everything I am supposed to. That might be wearing my brace and on crutches for the next month, or I might only have to go for the next two weeks, tomorrow I’ll know.

My best advice for you guys if you are considering surgery, think long-term about your recovery. Don’t just jump the gun and try to get back to things right away. Be conservative and listen to you body and your doctors. Just because you want to get back in the ring, think long-term. What’s going to be the best thing for your body. And when people give you a their sad face and exclaim they are so sad your season’s over, smile and say that’s alright, next year is going to be your year.

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One thought on “Patience

  1. Cristina you are amazing!! It is challenging to have to wait for things we want during a recovery period. You’re smart about your health, another reason you’re a great coach. It is also challenging to have others help with very basic stuff. I am glad you have a wonderful family too. Your recovery is coming right along and you still keep up with your athletes too, remarkable and impressive.

    Like

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