Since my last post, which was pretty much two weeks after my third ACL reconstruction, I stated my main issue was lack of sleep, which it was. Soon after those first two weeks cabin fever once again started to set in. One can only spend so much time locked up in their apartment watching movies and playing video games before they go stir crazy…and for me, I crossed that line a long time ago. So combining my lack of sleep with the cabin fever and you have a person on the verge of a breakdown.
I took it very easy those first two weeks only doing what I had to, but it wasn’t without it’s challenges being on my own. Simple things like, cooking and doing dishes were more than challenging, but nothing compared to transferring the food from the kitchen. If you’ve never tried it, try carrying a glass of milk and a plate of food while using two crutches, it’s almost circus worthy. Once mastered, it’s more a pain in the ass than anything and lucky for me I pulled it off without incident. As the two crutches fell way to one a couple days into my third week, those tasks became easy peasy, but leaving the confines of my apartment was a different story.
With the cabin fever setting in and a friend moving away, I decided to make my escape. It may have been too soon, but I felt I had mastered life in my apartment and was ready to mix it up on the outside again. The hardest part was getting in and out of my car, but my main concerns were the factors around me in which I could not control. I made sure to maintain a certain level of caution so not to take any chance of possibly hindering my recovery the best I could. It was nice to get out, although it was tiring on my knee and stressful because I had to constantly stay on guard to protect my knee.
My younger sister and her boyfriend arrived in Vancouver around the same time and being there first time in Vancouver, it would also be the first time my older brother, younger sister and I had ever been in the same place at the same time. It was unfortunate that I could not have been a little further along in my recovery as I really wanted to show them around in typical Vancouver fashion…via bicycle. The weather has been dreadful to say the least this spring in Vancouver and for the first couple days we spent together it was borderline awful, cold and grey with a slight sprinkle of rain. I will say, it was still an amazing time regardless…rain or shine, being able to spend time with my brother and sister for the first time was amazing. Even in my physical condition I was able to drive them around to some of the worthy sites around the city. It only became a slight issue when we got out of the car as I was extremely slow with one crutch, but they humored me by saying it didn’t matter. After two days however, I was spent and both legs and my crutch arm were exhausted, I needed two days to recover. One evening we even had the opportunity to spend time with some other relatives I hadn’t met yet, along with some friends of theirs, and all of us being Newfoundlanders meant we all got along smashingly.
I may have pushed a little more if my knee doctor hadn’t have told me to take it easy for the first four weeks. His reasons being; firstly, when I awoke from surgery he mentioned that he didn’t quite get the fixation he would have liked, so I need to be extra gentle to let the ligament graft. Secondly, being an allograft, meaning the tendon I used is not from my own body, in this case I used a cadaver ‘s (dead person’s), which takes a little longer to graft than if it were my own. The latter made sense, but the first reason was not something I really wanted to hear. The doctor assured me that there is no need for concern however and that if I allow for the graft to heal during those first four weeks without causing too much strain it should be all-good.
If you have been reading my blog, you should know by now that my knee has been the bane of my existence, having had issues with it for the past ten years. It has affected my ability to partake in the things in which I most enjoy in life, so I’m making sure to take as best of care with it as possible. That being said, as badly as I sometimes feel I need to get out, I’ll only leave my humble abode if it’s justified and I feel it won’t jeopardize my recovery in any way. Of course, the need to socialize and get out can be curbed with the occasional house visits which are always great to have.
Now entering my fourth week of recovery, I’ve been given the ok to start riding a stationary bike sans tension to help gain back my range of motion before seeing my physiotherapist the following week. I’m definitely taking this recovery slower than the last two and so far I feel it’s going well…fingers crossed that it continues to and I never have to go through this again.