PKR JusticeRider’s rehab adventure

Jockette

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Maybe we shouldn't be so quiet when people hurt our feelings with their thoughtless comments. I heard them, too. Maybe we should politely tell them exactly how it makes us feel, and maybe they won’t say it to the next person. I am highly sensitive and those comment caused me so much stress.
 

sistersinhim

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I agree with Jockette. We should tell people how their comments make us feel. I believe people are generally kind and don't realize they are hurting us. We can also be kind when we tell them our feelings and I bet they will think twice before commenting about someone else's recovery.

I was blessed to not have heard the comparison comments. The comments I heard were, "Are you doing your exercises?" or "You have to do your therapy or you won't heal right." In the beginning, I told these well-meaning people that you don't have to do exercises to recover from a joint replacement, just normal activities. They would look at me like I was crazy. Finally, after a while to other commenters, I'll just grimace and shake my head and say, "Whew!". This was so much easier.
 
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JusticeRider

JusticeRider

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sistersinhim and Jockette, you are so right that we need to be honest with people when they say hurtful things. I have a hard time when I know they mean well. If someone is being purposefully cruel, I have no problem calling them out. But when it’s just a thoughtless comment from someone I know is actually a kind person, it’s much more difficult for me to show my hurt feelings. I don’t want to make them feel bad! For making me feel bad! It sounds silly when I say it, but it’s true. But I guess if they don’t know they won’t stop making those kind of comments.
 

Dancingqueen

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So cool about progress! Someone at the pool said “I noticed your not limping like you were a month ago” and I felt like a million bucks! It takes effort, smaller concentrated stepping. And..for me, I stop breathing which is never helpful
I, too, find “helpful” friends telling me about their knowledge around TKR. I don’t think they mean to be hurtful, but, they are ignorant.
Have a great day!
 
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JusticeRider

JusticeRider

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Dancingqueen, that’s great! I love that you got some positive feedback! And you know you are improving :) I wish I had access to a pool. When I had my first hip surgery, I lived in an apartment that had a pool, and that was a huge part of my rehab. I tried the public pool closest to me after my second hip surgery, but even though they were supposed to have designated times set aside for pool walking, they would often open it up anyway and there would be rowdy kids throwing beach balls, etc. Not safe for rehab! I would love to have a warm water pool right now! That’s funny that you mentioned forgetting to breathe when you’re concentrating on walking. I think I do that too! And I forget to move my arms sometimes too, haha! It’s so odd to have to relearn how to walk. But I don’t care how slowly I’m walking if my form is good. The speed will come later.
 

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The town next to where I live is hugely diverse and the city built this large pool and gym complex about 35 years ago to accommodate kids, teens and all us older folks. Designated times/spaces are adhered to. They do accommodate families on the weekends, but, Monday-Friday I have been pretty safe!
I had remembered the joy of gentle aerobics when I was pregnant (a million years ago) and how soothing water can be.
Today, I’m thinking grocery shopping and cleaning frig might be enough excitement! (Ok, some quad stuff, too)
 
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JusticeRider

JusticeRider

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@Dancingqueen I am jealous of your pool access! But very happy for you that you have such a great resource! I hope your day is a good one with *just* enough excitement haha.

I have a sore and swollen knee today. We had a windstorm come through yesterday. My husband was gone for the day and I looked outside and saw a huge branch had fallen off our big ancient apple tree and had knocked down one of our electric fences. My two horses and cow had gotten into the field which my husband just finished seeding a couple days ago. They were NOT supposed to be in the freshly seeded field. Walking across the lumpy uneven pasture is not good for my knee but I had to do something. Luckily, when the animals saw me coming, they knew they weren’t supposed to be in there and high tailed it back over the downed fence and out of the field. But then I had to get the huge branch off the fence. Without hurting my knee! Long story short, as carefully as I could, I managed to drag/pivot the branch off the fence and then get it set back up.

Then I saw that the boards blocking off the area beneath the chicken coop had been knocked down by the wind. We don’t want the chickens under there because we can’t crawl under there if they decide to lay eggs under there or if one gets sick or injured and goes under there. So I was bending over resetting the boards for maybe 10 minutes, unintentionally putting pressure on the front of my already stressed knee.

When I finally got everything fixed and went back to the house, I was pulling off my boots when my knee gave out a little bit and locked out. The pain was searing! Ouch!! My poor baby knee. I did not mean to hurt it, but it is swollen and not happy today. I am trying to mostly just ice and rest it. Does anyone have any experience/opinions about Voltaren gel? I put some on my knee this afternoon but I haven’t used it since before my surgery and haven’t asked my Dr about it. I hope it will help and not add to my daily ‘allowance’ of NSAID’s since I’m taking the max amount of ibuprofen?
 

Dancingqueen

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Oh my gosh! That sounds like it would have been extremely challenging for two strong working knees! Your care for your animals is beautiful. Really hope you can rest and recover now
I can’t take NSAIDs and don’t know about topicals, though I’ve tried my husband’s CBD-infused cream (he swears by it for his arthritic hands). I don’t think it’s done much for me. REST!!!
 

Jockette

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Does anyone have any experience/opinions about Voltaren gel? I put some on my knee this afternoon but I haven’t used it since before my surgery and haven’t asked my Dr about it. I hope it will help and not add to my daily ‘allowance’ of NSAID’s since I’m taking the max amount of ibuprofen?
Call your pharmacist today and ask that question.
 

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@JusticeRider , I used the generic version of Voltaren. I found it to be no better or worse than using ibuprofen. It's a bit of a pain to use so I went back to the ibuprofen.

The active ingredient, diclofenac, is an NSAID and does add to your daily allowance so if you are maxing out on ibuprofen you shouldn't use the gel. It should say this right on the instructions - it did on the brand I used.

Some people swear by the gel so if it works well for you then you should back off the ibuprofen. Any doubts - call your doctor.
 
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JusticeRider

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Thank you @Dancingqueen, I really do love these animals! Even the chickens are pets, as well as providing us with delicious eggs. My small Jersey cow is adorable but very naughty, always being mischievous and getting into things. She was meant to be a milk cow but wasn’t able to produce, so it seems we have a pet cow now too! And of course the horses are our partners in adventure.

I have had my horse his whole life, 26 years. I was a teenager when he was born and was present for his birth. It’s killing me not being able to take care of them and the gardens and farm right now. But this is only a season and I will be back to it before too long! Right now I’m able to clean the chicken coop and mix up the horses’ grain and supplements. And my poor hard working husband is doing all the rest, God bless him!

Thanks @WFD and @Jockette, I wasn’t sure about the Voltaren. It does seem to have helped so I may substitute that for some of the Ibuprofen. Unfortunately the relevant labeling is on the box the tube came in which has long since been thrown away! I haven’t used it a whole lot because it is a little inconvenient, but I think I’ll try it now for a little while.
 
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sistersinhim

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My sister gets lots of pain relief using Voltaren. From what I have found googling the mixing of it with ibuprofen is a :bignono:. The two together can be dangerous. Testing out the one versus the other for pain relief is a good idea, but not the two together.

What a day you had as a result of that windstorm. It might take more than a few days for your knee to calm down. If so, just continue and ice and elevate as much as possible. As you said, this is just for a season! Your husband sounds like a gift from God. Try not to worry about his added duties. You would do the same for him if the situation was reversed. The more you can heal now, the quicker you should be able to get back to your normal life.
 
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JusticeRider

JusticeRider

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Your husband sounds like a gift from God. Try not to worry about his added duties. You would do the same for him if the situation was reversed
So true, @sistersinhim ! He really is. And yes, I would do the same for him! I try not to feel guilty about it but it’s hard sometimes.

I did take it easy for a bit after the windstorm. I’ve since been very gradually building back up. Things are going pretty well. I’m up to 2 full square blocks, plus a little side trip. So it’s about 7 blocks in length for my outside walks. I’m getting about 3500 steps per day most days. I still have a limp but it’s getting less noticeable all the time. I just have to walk reallllly slowwwwly.

I’m getting much more comfortable going up stairs the normal way. I’m still using the hand rail but not leaning on it like before. Still not going down foot over foot though. I’ve been doing minimal pt, mostly just gentle bends, calf raises, balancing on the surgical leg, and stretching my hip and quads as much as I can. I find my stamina in doing regular things, like hanging out in the barn and trailering the horses out and cleaning the chicken coop, has really improved.

I had my first experience with zingers today…not very nice! Caught me by surprise. But I’m going to take it as a good sign that nerve pathways are reconnecting. Still getting swelling to varying degrees. I’m trying to figure out what tends to make it swell and avoid those things. Sort of trial and error.

Most of all, I’m trying to stay patient. I’m in it for the long haul. This lady is not on the fast track. Being young, fit, and motivated has not made my recovery faster like they said it would. But looking back on my other surgeries, I think my body has a certain way of dealing with the assault. And that way is not quick and easy. But I do bounce back!! Meanwhile, this is the season of taking it slow.
 

sistersinhim

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I had my first experience with zingers today…not very nice!
Oh my, they are not fun at all and can't be stopped. But, it is nice to know that your knee is healing! Even after 5 years I still have slight ones every few months of so. They don't hurt anymore but are just a little tingle.
Meanwhile, this is the season of taking it slow.
I like this! So true and a perfect attitude towards this recovery.
 
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JusticeRider

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On Monday, I rode my horse! This was actually the second time since my surgery.
The first time was a few weeks ago.

I knew it was really too early the first time, but I was sad and frustrated with where I was at and I wanted to do it so I did it. And it went ok and I have no regrets. I needed a win. At the time, I was very unsteady on my feet, in pain, and feeling very vulnerable. I was nervous on my horse and even a little shaky. I was terrified of falling and smashing my implant. I wouldn’t say it was fun exactly, but I did feel triumphant, like I had accomplished something. My knee started to twinge after about 20 minutes.

This time, I felt stronger, steadier, and was able to brush and tack up my horse myself. I even managed to climb up on the wheel well of my horse trailer to get on. Last time I only walked, but this time I trotted too, and it felt good! I felt much more comfortable and confident. I stayed on for about 40 minutes. My knee was starting to twinge near the end. I ended so happy and satisfied!

Yesterday I woke up a little sore and stiff. But the good news is, after plenty of elevating and icing and resting and walking and stretching and elevating and icing and resting…it felt quite a bit better by late afternoon. I took it pretty easy yesterday and today and it seems there are no ill effects! I would definitely call that a success!!

I also got my Covid booster yesterday afternoon and after feeling a little under the weather this morning, I perked up and took a walk this afternoon. I was maybe even slower than usual, but I made it all the way though the route I picked (a little over 1/3 mile). I’m not especially sore or swollen tonight. For the day after a Covid shot (and two days after my first real ride) I thought that was pretty good!

Days like this I think maybe I can do this after all :fasthorse:
 

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I'm so glad to see you got back to an activity you love, even if it was briefly! I think that's one of the major keys to recovery. It's so good for your mental state of mind to get back to some semblance of normal and the things you love doing. I'm getting there slowly. I got back to my business this week, not quite full time yet but I'm in for 4 or 5 hours a day and interacting with my staff in person. I missed them! I'm back to my community band rehearsals and getting ready for a Holiday concert. All of those little things that you "normally do" really do make a big difference when you can start getting back to them. My little vacation of sitting in my recliner and having stuff brought to me was very short lived. :heehee: Now it's just a matter of being careful to not join the Overdid It Club. My knee isn't shy about letting me know when I've done a bit too much.
 
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JusticeRider

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Thanks @Jockette and @panammaniac for your kind comments. They made my day :) And all here for your support! You all have been such a blessing. This journey is hard!! It’s so nice to have good days. Our weather here has been absolutely beautiful too, sunny and clear. The leaves are all turning lovely colors and crunching on the ground. And in my valley, this is the season that the trumpeter swans come to visit until after the new year when they will continue their migration south. I’m so glad I’m able to get outside a little bit more now so I don’t miss it!
 

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