That was FAST.
From entering the operating room to Dr. Bashyal speaking with my wife in the waiting room, less than an hour.
I’m sore. Plenty of dizziness throughout the day. Some flashes of significant pain.
But modern pharmacology is THE BOMB! (Does that phrase date me?)
I had some things going for me. Good health for a guy my age. Strength training is a big plus at least when it comes to my fundamental physical therapy goals. And even though I haven’t worked out consistently in a significant while.
So that’s today’s takeaway.
Take the long view when assessing your exercise consistency.
Kathy snapped the photo (above) as I was getting settled in my room. About an hour and a half after surgery. I was euphoric.
The last thing I remember pre-surgery was the team positioning my left arm above my shoulder.
My next conscious moment was staring at the tiled ceiling in the brightly lit room, my recovery nurse (I wish I could remember her name) calling my name.
Immediately, a sense of complete overwhelm seized me. I couldn’t control my tears. Grateful. Thankful. Humbled.
The last handful of times I went to adoration, I had a powerful sense of Jesus telling me I’d be okay and the surgery would be a snap. “I’m not done with you.” For what exactly, I’ll leave for another story.
Yet, the last week or so prior to surgery, I was consumed… CONSUMED… with fear. And maybe even a little terror.
The events occurring over the previous 11 months weighed heavily. The harsh reality of Mom dying so unexpectedly and as the consequence of a relatively routine procedure led me to dwell on our mortality.
I didn’t trust Jesus.
That, my friends, is idolatry. Belief in something other than the word of God.
Okay, argue that maybe I wasn’t really getting this message from God. That instead, it was the product of my hopeful imagination.
We’re also instructed to hope in the promises of Christ.
So what if the surgery was tragically unsuccessful? Should I not hope in the promises of heaven? Of the Love and Mercy of God the Father? I’d been to confession two days ago. Not conscience of any significant or unconfessed mortal sin. I received the sacrament of anointing yesterday.
Should I not place my hope in heaven?
Am I so indispensable that the world… the human race… even simply my family… couldn’t carry on without me?
That’s also placing myself above God. And it’s a sin.
Back to exercise consistency.
I hated weight lifting. Back in high school, the PE coach left us on our own in the weight room. I had no clue what I was doing. It was freshman year. I was a classic introvert. An introvert’s introvert.
Some guys were jocks and were having a blast. Other guys had their buddies to hang with. Heck, if they didn’t want to lift, they just gabbed for the entire period.
I wandered from machine to machine and the weight stacks, observing the others, trying to get a clue.
I hurt myself. Too much weight. Terrible form. I swore off weights for life.
Or so I thought.
The Health Crisis
Fast forward to 1999. I write about it here.
That day (and night) inspired me to change the way I ate and to consume every last bit of information on healthy eating.
That research, in turn, inspired me to change the way I exercised, which to that point in my adult life, was recreational sports, mainly racquetball.
The cardiovascular exercise was a good start. But incomplete.
The research argued for strength training. And that conclusion is spot on.
I got in the absolute best shape of my life in my mid 40s. Much healthier than I was in my 20s and 30s. Despite thinking I was doing all the right things.
The one constant in my up-and-down exercise over the years (wow… a bunch of stories there for other days, including this one) was and is…
I could cite all the reasons and arguments for strength training. But I’m not. Here’s the one that mattered today:
I was able to walk down the hallway, maneuver around the room (and hall) using a walker… and able to bear the pain because I could bear my body weight using other developed muscles.
That’s the same strength that allowed me to bear bone-on-bone pain. And likely also contributed to the damage I did to my pelvis by ignoring the need to seek medical help.
Double edged sword.
Secondary takeaway: seek medical advice!
The good news, however, is that the strength — developed over time — should help me with recovery and rehab.
Gosh. There’s a whole lotta stories in these last few paragraphs.
Do any of these thoughts resonate with you?
Do you have any questions about any of what I’ve shared?
I’ve been reworking my websites leading up to surgery and I’ll likely have some extra “desk time” to make ‘em all purty-like (a little ‘Westerns’ lingo there).
Hip me up with questions (yes, hip, not hit). Ha ha. No groaning!!
Oh wow… I think the meds are really kicking in now. Sorry for the cheesy humor. (But notice I didn’t delete it.) Time to sign off.