Watch 2019 JRAD Videos

Did anyone feel a loss or grief?

Status
Not open for further replies.

mrschooch

member
Joined
Jun 26, 2010
Messages
156
Location
United States
Another weird question that I am embarrassed to ask, but does/did anyone feel grief, sadness, or even anger that they were losing a piece of themselves? I get the anxiety, scared, etc. piece, but this feeling seems just kind of strange to me. I am feeling a sense of loss the closer it gets to the replacement. I have had my gallbladder and tonsils removed and had children--lost blood so I am not sure why I feel this way. I even tried to name my new knee, but then I would have had to name my old knee which seemed too personal, like I was killing it or it died or something. :sct: Maybe I will not personalize it and just call it something like popcorn or brocoli, lol! Maybe I could have a contest to name my new knee. I dunno, I think I have too much time on my hands this weekend, :hehe: lol, and need to get busy doing something, lol! Just thought I would ask...
 

Josephine

NURSE DIRECTOR EMERITUS
Nurse Director
Joined
Jun 8, 2007
Messages
84,937
Age
78
Location
The North
Gender
Female
Country
United Kingdom United Kingdom
Absolutely not! I was glad to be rid. Like a bad tooth I couldn't wait to have extracted. I know Doug said he patted his knee on the way into the OR and said something like "Goodbye old friend" but not me. I just thought "Goodbye and good riddance"! I love my new knee like I'd love a new pair of shoes or a new dress! Same thing as far as I'm concerned. (Except, of course, I can't take it off and hang it in the wardrobe! :hehe:)
 

kangaroo

graduate
Joined
Feb 28, 2009
Messages
711
Location
australia
Its really not as weird as it sounds. A lot of people name their new joints and try to make it feel welcome. Part of my decision making process was concerned with the psychology of hip replacements. In many ways my dodgey hip and funny walk were part of who I was, my life revolved around them in terms of what I would do, people knew me as the girl with the hip, it was a conversation starter (have you hurt your foot/knee/leg).....so when I no longer have the hip then who am I?. People who have not faced this do not get the concept of identity being part of the disfunctional. I can only imagine how the liver or heart transplant patient feels. I think that the loss we feel at least in the time leading up to the surgery is because our lives are very intimately entwined with the joint, and whilst its failed at this point it has done its best to provide service for us and still deserved to be recognised for the efforts its made.

Many people find that it takes a while not to feel like you have a foreign body inside your leg. I never felt like that I just felt relief, that a new me was emerging from the cocoon, that a new life full of new possibilities had begun. I did farewell the old hip on the way to theatre....

I guess the important thing is to not let the anxiety /grief/sense of loss stop us. Perhaps the grief and loss is also connected to all the things we could have done if the joint had never been defunct.....I do think about the what ifs.....if I had been born and I just had had a healthy hip all along....all the things I could have done all these years ....but there is no point in dwelling on what might have been....I have a good hip now and I just have to get on with it now....which believe me, I am!

So I don't think its a silly question. It is one that many before you have pondered and one that non replacement patients dont get

Rachel
 

KM253

member
Joined
Jan 26, 2010
Messages
184
Age
63
Location
United States
I felt bad before the surgery that I'd be losing a part of my body. The only grief I feel after surgery is that I didn't do it sooner. I never experienced the 'why did I do this to myself' post surgical phase that many people go through. From the moment I stood up the day after surgery I felt the difference that a straight, strong, stable knee can make. (Love my illiteration too!:hehe:) I had a 'christening' for the new knee the day after surgery. My friends came to the hospital with food and drink to celebrate. My surgeon walked in to my room as they were opening another bottle of wine (that of course I couldn't drink). :ch-w:

Going through PT now, I realize that most of the work I need to do is to undo the damage I did to the rest of my body trying to compensate for and avoid the pain caused by my bad knees. Put those feelings aside and look forward!
 

Jamie

ADMINISTRATOR
Senior Administrator
Joined
Mar 24, 2008
Messages
59,876
Age
71
Location
Kansas
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
I don't think it's an unusual feeling at all. I didn't feel that way about my knee, but I can understand why you would. Rachel did an excellent job of explaining those feelings. I think it's part of the uncertainty of what's ahead. The good thing is that it will all resolve itself once you get into recovery and begin to do those things you've been prohibited from doing for so long.

When you feel yourself going into those thoughts, it's okay to allow yourself some time to grieve that you are not going to be the exact same person that you were when you had all your natural parts. But try and move on to focus on all the things you're going to do! Make a list.....talk about it. It's always better to keep that positive thought process in motion than to dwell on the negative.
 

JudyS

alpha
Joined
Apr 25, 2008
Messages
5,260
Age
63
Location
Southern California
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
I definately felt weird about having a part of my body taken out. but i have a great surgeon, I fully trusted him, knew i needed it so out it came. No regrets, once i woke up from surgery those feelings that i had on and off for a few months were totally gone and i was just excited about my brand new shiny hip. I wish other things could be replaced as easily.
judy
 

RestAssured

Forum Advisor
Joined
Oct 3, 2009
Messages
8,987
Age
55
Location
Texas
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
By the time I had made up my mind to go ahead with surgery I had "no quality of life left" with my knees.

These are the same knees that had pounded the basketball courts for many years, thrown numerous discuses through the air with the force of the leg whip, hit many floors while playing volleyball, and found themselves running and running to stay in shape.

I have osteoarthritis so bad I could hardly walk. I had leg braces and walked with a walker. My knees were down to bone on bone.

So when you ask if I felt a sense of loss or grief, I guess I will have to answer in two parts:

I felt a loss of who I used to be realizing I was never going to get that person back in terms of with the knees that I had.

I felt elation when I got the new knees because it was the first time I was actually back to my full height. I am not bowlegged any more and when I finish rehabbing the 2nd knee, I will be a new woman that will be ready to conquer the world again.:D

So to wrap it up do I feel a sense of loss or grief? No, I am in much better shape than I have been in over 10 years!:wink:
 

One NZer

senior
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Messages
339
Age
75
Gender
Male
Country
New Zealand New Zealand
I had, and have no regrets on getting rid of my half knee. Good riddance to bad rubbish ! Roll on getting rid of the next one !

My only thoughts are that many many years ago I added a codicil to my will to donate my dead and useless body to the med students at Otago Med School.

Since then I have had my gallbladder and appendix removed, the tonsils went years before that, my cataracts have both been done, and the hysterectomy put paid to that particular department.
Now with my new half knee, and the need for the other to be done in the nearish future, the students aren't going to get much to practice on ! :hehe:
 

skigirl

FORUM ADVISOR
Forum Advisor
Joined
May 5, 2009
Messages
13,614
Age
76
Location
Minneapolis, MN
Gender
Female
Country
United States United States
It is interesting, I just posted on another post that I have a sense of loss associated with the knee surgery. I miss my old, stronger self. I don't like my new knees--they clink and clank at the most inopportune times. Plus they are not real knees. However, my old knees were no longer functioning properly either.

I am used to being strong and invincible--run in a soccer game for 90 minutes--hike for 20 miles three days in a row, with a pack; bike for 50 or 60 miles; ski 150 days per year.

Now, I am lucky to ski 80 days, I don't play soccer, because of my knees; I hike--but only 10 miles so far--and just a day pack. My biking humiliation I detailed on the Meltdown post. So--here I am one year for my left knee and three months for my right. I am still struggling with a weaker right quad, lack of stamina and general conditioniing. I am no where near the person I was four years ago.

So, yes, I am grieving---and it is perfectly okay to do so. I don't like being a patient, I don't like people knowing about my knees, I feel like I lost. Some of it is just the fatigue and depression from two major surgeries in one year--too much really, I am sorry I did not wait longer for my right knee. I feel worn out and when I go into the gym, I almost don't want to work out---a feeling I have never had before. I have always loved the gym. Some of the time, I feel like "what is the use".

But the reality is that if you don't keep your muscles strong, the knee will not work properly. You need strong muscles and ligaments to keep all that metal in the right position. I run up the stairs--but sometimes I hold onto the bannister on the way down---I still cannot believe that I do that!!

Oh well, My knees were gone so now I am stuck sounding like the crocodile in Captain Hook---Once in the movies, my knee made weird noises and everyone said, what is that noise---I almost died. But, I held my knee really stiff and it did not make more noise. But, at least I have no pain. Kelly
 
OP
OP
M

mrschooch

member
Joined
Jun 26, 2010
Messages
156
Location
United States
Thank you all for your kind and honest answers! I am a horrible patient and do not have much patience with myself! There I said it, I put it out there. I have always done way more than I was supposed to do with every surgery. Most people have an arthroscopic surgery and are back to work in 2-4 days, he would want me out a month due to the extent of what he would try to fix, put back together, clean up, etc--I usually managed to wangle back in in 2 weeks!

I am proud of myself that I am asking all of these questions and letting them sink in...anotherwords I am listening! I even told my Mom about this board yesterday and how I was getting nervous that I was not going to be like her! I was relieved when she told me the woman she works with had her hip replaced and is having a lot of the same issues many of you have talked about with pain, depression, sadness, exhaustion, etc. My mom said she considers herself lucky and that everyone is different. My mom was very overweight and not at all in shape--still isn't! So it has been hard for me to understand why she had such an easy time with hers. That is until she echoed those words that so many of you have said before--everyone is different. I guess I am also feeling weird because all of you seem so active and in shape. I am overweight, a lot, although I am in shape if you saw what I can do!

I am not going to name my old knee and will wait to see what my new knee brings. I have realized that there ARE many things I have not been able to do through the years due to my knees. I am going to look ahead now and think about the possibilities of my future. Perhaps, I too, will be able to hike again instead of making sure I am on a flat surface so I don't kill myself or someone else, lol! I will not feel like I am 80 years old when I get out of bed in the morning or try to keep up with a client in the hallway! Heck, maybe I will even start to do walk therapy with them instead of just sitting in my office (Therapy for them, PT for me!). I will be able to kick my legs when I swim instead of squirming in pain when something inside gets jammed or stuck! I will not have to use my husband as a crutch and just hold his hand because...:wub:
Thanks for all of the help, encouragement, and honesty...8 days and looking ahead instead of dread! Michelle
 
OP
OP
M

mrschooch

member
Joined
Jun 26, 2010
Messages
156
Location
United States
I had, and have no regrets on getting rid of my half knee. Good riddance to bad rubbish ! Roll on getting rid of the next one !

My only thoughts are that many many years ago I added a codicil to my will to donate my dead and useless body to the med students at Otago Med School.

Since then I have had my gallbladder and appendix removed, the tonsils went years before that, my cataracts have both been done, and the hysterectomy put paid to that particular department.
Now with my new half knee, and the need for the other to be done in the nearish future, the students aren't going to get much to practice on ! :hehe:
I am sorry, but your post made me :D:wahey::lvros: The image of some poor medical student opening you up all excited to learn and finding all of the missing parts...they would think they got jipped! Thank you for my chuckle for the day!
 

Josephine

NURSE DIRECTOR EMERITUS
Nurse Director
Joined
Jun 8, 2007
Messages
84,937
Age
78
Location
The North
Gender
Female
Country
United Kingdom United Kingdom
Michelle, a lot of us are overweight! I currently weigh in at 250lbs (have lost 12 this last month woo hoo!).

But I had more thoughts on your question:
I've had several lumps and bumps excised from my forearms and miss my knee parts about as much as I miss them! Or about as much as I would miss my nails when I cut them!

Actually, they don't take off all that much, just layers, y'know, so it's more like a resurfacing.

Here's the facts

ai32.tinypic.com_e65a0z.gif



Ellen, I laughed at that too! I've also had various bits and bobs removed and I've also donated my body to the Department of Anatomy at Newcastle Uni. Same though occurred to me!
 

KM253

member
Joined
Jan 26, 2010
Messages
184
Age
63
Location
United States
Since then I have had my gallbladder and appendix removed, the tonsils went years before that, my cataracts have both been done, and the hysterectomy put paid to that particular department.
Now with my new half knee, and the need for the other to be done in the nearish future, the students aren't going to get much to practice on ! :hehe:
On the contrary, Ellen, they can practice revisions on your knees!:D
 

One NZer

senior
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Messages
339
Age
75
Gender
Male
Country
New Zealand New Zealand
:rotfl: Good point there !..... I suppose the learner OS have to practice somewhere. :hehe:
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

New

Active Antibacterial

BoneSmart #1 Best Blog

Forum statistics

Threads
51,104
Messages
1,376,806
BoneSmarties
32,035
Latest member
Viv
Recent bookmarks
0

Top Bottom