Yep, you heard right folks. I’m 48 years old and I’m having a full hip replacement later this summer. I’ve suffered from hip pain for the last five years or really if I’m honest, it’s been off and on for the last ten years but it’s progression has ramped up in the last five.
I self diagnosed myself dozens of times, it’s a muscle issue, it’s because I sit so much at work, bla bla bla. I saw a couple of chiropractors and for a time that helped but then in the last year it just wasn’t cutting it anymore. My pain was getting worse and it was beginning to impact my quality of life. I would experience debilitating pain after walking or exercising. It caused me to begin to have a pronounced limp now and then and now I have a limp all the time. At this point, every step is painful and even sleeping is becoming problematic due to discomfort. It’s a thing….and it sucks.
So I made an appointment with an Orthopedic Surgeon and he did a xray. I’ll pop it in here for your viewing pleasure.
Excuse the lady part cover up – this x-ray showed eeevvery-thaaaang!!! Sorry if you were expecting a cooter shot, you’re welcome if you are here for the goods and…NOT the a’hem…”goods”. Even the non-medicaly trained can see there is a marked difference between the left and right hip. The left hip is perfect, nice separation between the ball joint and the hip, it’s smooth and healthy, then there is the right hip. It’s just one big mash up of bone on bone painfulness. The diagnosis: Advanced arthritis and bone spurs. So this gal is getting a brand new hip. (Quick aside: when ever I think about getting a new hip I hear Tom Hanks in Forrest Gump say the classic line “Lt. Dan! You got new legs!” ok – that was random tomfoolery but it makes me smile in the face of major surgery)
My Doctor is young and progressive, I chose him at the recommendation of a good friend who is a surgical nurse. He will go in anterior (front of the hip) and make an incision, using tools to spread the muscles and tendons to not have to cut through them which is what used to make recovery such a long an arduous process. He will replace the hip and then sew me up with staples and cover with waterproof dressing so I’m able to shower. He says he will have me up and walking that day and probably discharged the next day. I anticipate being out of work about two weeks and then with physical therapy I should be better than ever after just a few more weeks.
As I write this, I’m laying in bed with an ice pack on my hip. It’s my normal spot anytime I’m not doing something that requires pants and a trip outside my front door. This is not living. This is a poor facsimile of living. So….things I’m looking forward to after hip surgery:
- The ability to reach my right foot again.
- Putting on my own socks
- Wearing heels or cute wedges again
- Any shoe with a buckle
- Crossing my legs again
- Walking without pain
- Walking in front of someone and not have them ask why I’m limping
- Having my legs be the same length
- New Yoga poses
- Being able to get in my car like a normal person
- Getting back to the gym
- Walking my dog for long walks to improve his quality of life
- Birding with my sister and not feeling like I’m slowing her down
- Sleeping without constant pain
- Not having to live on ibuprofen
- Even better sex
- Feeling 48 instead of feeling 88
Those are just a few things. If you have good mobility and relatively low pain from day to day, please be grateful for it. Please don’t take a healthy body for granted. When you experience constant pain and look at life in regards to all the things you can’t do it can become pretty discouraging. Be grateful for joints that move and function the way they are supposed to. When it’s gone and you are forced to admit your inability to keep up the pace with your peers it’s humbling to say the least.
This is not a post looking for sympathy or anything other than a way for me to be able to look back post surgical recovery and remember how far I’ve come. We all need to be able to see what we’ve overcome and persevered from. I often look back to the blog posts from two years ago and realize I love where I am in life, in my relationships and in my dating life. I’m not the best I can be, but I sure as heck am better than I was.
So go forth today people! On this beautiful Sunday in May, go outside and stretch, go for a walk, wear the heels, go for a run, go to the gym or do that yoga pose you’ve been trying to master. Get after life! Go live and live hard. Then go play hard too. It’s all about balance.
Have a good one. Cheers.