Yesterday marked the 4-month anniversary of my right hip replacement. My Physical Therapist had told me that I would probably see a big difference at 4 months, and I’m happy to say she was right!
In the last couple of weeks, I have experienced a big shift. I am stronger and my muscles have less pain after I use them for walking or standing, unless I over do it. I’m hardly using ibuprofen anymore. The scar is looking really good, so I’ve decided to change my daily massages with vitamin E oil to weekly. It feels like the internal scar tissue is also softening and healing, so my range of motion is better and there is less grinding around in there. My massage therapist says it feels much better to her too, and that is validating.
I was able to take a few 3/4-mile walks this week with no ill effects. It’s been 8 months since I’ve been able to do that. I can do side leg lifts, including the clam now, which I was unable to do at 3 months. Stairs are getting better all the time, but remain my biggest challenge. Tai Chi and Yoga are easier and less painful. I can do balance poses like Tree more easily and hold them for longer. Dancer is slowly coming back, but I can’t lean forward very far just yet. I’m stronger in my lunges and bent-knee poses, and the pain is less. I’m still loving my time in the pool the most and I suspect that will continue.
To celebrate my new level of healing, I went out and bought really good hiking poles at REI. I am hopeful that I’ll be able to do some hiking in the warmer months this year.
Leftie is still trying to decide what she thinks about all this. She is sore after too much walking or standing, but she is stable, maybe even a little better than last month. I am hoping she will hang on for me at least through the summer. I am so not ready to do this again.
I realize how much it’s taken out of me. My energy levels are still lower than my normal and I can only do so much in one day. I am getting better at accepting and surrendering to this reality and pacing myself accordingly. I believe this is the biggest part of my healing-honoring where I am and not pushing it. It’s good for me to learn this, though sometimes it is a hard teacher.
I sit and relax more than I ever have. I am better at asking for, and graciously receiving, help from others. And I am very grateful for all the kindness and support that surrounds me.
Today I moved out of my studio where I used to teach Yoga and Tai Chi. I haven’t done that since last spring and I still don’t feel ready to teach again. I also realized that the desire to have a studio and teach on any kind of schedule has left me. It feels like I am entering a new, more spontaneous stage. I can see doing these practices in the park behind our home when I am so inspired and inviting others to join in. But that feels like it may be a ways off yet. Teaching helped me both to deepen my own practice and to help others with theirs. I’m grateful for the time I was able to teach over the last 8 years. I’m enjoying my yoga room in our back bedroom and I do Tai Chi to wake my body up every morning.
Now we will see how my life unfolds from here. I’m enjoying more reading and writing time, and time to just be with Scott, family, friends, and myself. Perhaps, that is really what this whole Hip Adventure is all about…