Surgery. If you've ever had one done, then you know it goes through a process leading up to the big day. You get a diagnosis. You get told you need surgery. You prep for surgery. You have your surgery, and then it's time to dig deep, and begin the recovery process that nobody really says what it will be like; unless you consider, "You'll feel some discomfort" a good understanding. If you've had multiple surgeries then you know that not all surgeries have the same recovery. Some surgeries have a fairly easy recovery, some are in the middle, while others are far more difficult. This was my first spinal surgery, and now that I was home, it was time for me to experience first hand where I thought this recovery would land on the scale of fairly easy, medium, or hard.
It was day one of being home from the hospital post neck fusion. As expected I had a long night. I slept in my recliner in my room because I could get out of it easier than my bed. Even though it was a long night, I did get more sleep at home because there weren't nurses coming in every few hours to check my vitals. There wasn't the background music of various alarms going off at all hours of the night from patient's rooms. I was glad to be out of the hospital. After all of the surgery that I've had done, I have my own routine down at home. I have things set up in such a way to make life a little easier for me. Of course things were difficult, but it was nice being around the comforts of home. My first day home consisted of me primarily sleeping. After surgery, all of your body's energy goes to healing the area that just experienced the trauma. The best time when this healing takes place is when you're asleep. Any left over energy is what allows you to stay awake. Needless to say, I didn't have a lot of leftover energy that day.
|Nap in the middle of the day. You can never have too many pillows after surgery. As expected, that's my dog Daisy in her usual spot when I'm post-op. She's always by my side and was giving whoever took this picture the, "What do you want?" look.|
April 20th was similar to the previous day, minus the fact that I got my halo brace stuck in the blinds. Yes, you read that correctly. I got stuck in the blinds. One thing to know with the halo brace is you're not aware of your surroundings at first because the brace is quite large. It was evening, and I was getting myself ready to go to bed. I walked over to my window and leaned over to close the blinds. I didn't realize when I leaned over I got one of the strings tangled in on one of the screws. I couldn't reach my head because of the shoulder injuries, and I couldn't reach my phone because I was stuck to the blinds. This meant I needed to yell out for some help.
From my room I yelled out, "I need help!" My niece Lizzy yelled back, "One minute!" to which I responded, "No, now!" Lizzy came into my room and started laughing...honestly, how could you not? I told her I somehow managed to get myself stuck in the blinds while trying to close them, and I needed her to untangle me. Unfortunately, Lizzy couldn't reach. I told her to get Kelly (my sister). Kelly said the same thing too, "Wait a minute!" I told Lizzy to go in the hall and say, "No! You need to come right now because Meg's halo is stuck in the blinds!" It's amazing how fast somebody comes to your rescue when they realize you're stuck. Next thing you know my sister and my dad are in my room. Kelly was untangling me, while my dad was in the background laughing, along with my niece, and my sister. I too was laughing, but also crying at the same time because I hurt and was irritated that I was stuck. Who knew closing the blinds could be so complicated? I told my family they better get a picture of this because I might be mad in the moment but I will laugh at this down the road. To this day, I still laugh at the day I got stuck in the blinds.
|Fortunately this has been the ONE and only time that this has happened. Haha memory making at its best.|
There wasn't much rest on this day until the afternoon. As I mentioned in the previous post, I was having trouble being vertical because of the weight of my left shoulder blade pulling on my neck, and I ended up making a sling out of a bed sheet with my sister in the hospital to support my arm. On April 21st I had an appointment to get fitted for some custom braces to support my arms. My appointment was in the morning around 9:00. Early morning appointments are always rough after surgery. It takes a lot of effort, and energy to get yourself up, dressed, teeth brushed, hair back, food in your stomach, and all that good stuff. By the time it was time to leave for my appointment I was thinking it was time to take a nap.
|Almost time to leave. My dad putting my hair up in a ponytail. I think this is one skill in life he never thought he was going to master.|
|This is as good as the hair styling is going to get. Nice job dad!|
|Thomas taking measurements around my waist so he knew how big of a waistband he needed to make|
|This was the prototype for the arm rest. Since it helped my left arm, Thomas said he would have the finished product done in a couple days. He was also going to make a brace for my right arm too.|
|Touch is important at all ages. I told my grandpa he couldn't hug me like normal because I didn't want him to bang his head on my brace & it was painful for me to bend over to hug him, so he held my hands instead.|
|Some things are worth not feeling good for. This is one of my new favorite pictures of my grandpa and I.|
If there is anybody that has Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS), is in/was in a halo that would like to connect, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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