Week 11 - Are we THERE YET? Why the Frustration (a rant....)

Jan 27, 2018

I Have to Rant ...

That's it.  I'm done.

That look must have been on my face when I went to see Ted, my physical therapist.
"What's going on?" he asks.

I practically burst into tears.  I bet many of you have felt this frustration too.

I've been patient.  I've followed orders.  I've done the work.  I want to be HEALED and back to full function. Check out this video I made after I left my appointment.  You can tell I'm still pretty upset.

I'm NOT THERE YET.  I keep having setbacks = my knee swells and gets stiff.
Today, Ted measured my knee at 115 degrees...that's less than my 120-125 before.  UGH.  I cry.  I feel like I've been doing the right things.

AND then the truth comes out...
TED:  What did you do last week to make your knee stiff?
ROBIN:  I did my first group strength training class.  All approved moves  and we did side lunges.
TED:  Have WE done side lunges yet?
ROBIN: (sheepishly) No...

TED:  Did you ride more than 45 minutes on a bike?
ROBIN: Not all at once.  BUT  I did ride 3 hours split into 4 chunks yesterday.
TED: How is 3 hours in one day not more than 45 minutes? (Then he gives me a look like I'm insane).

Ted goes on to say that while the rest of me is strong and able, my knee still has to catch up.  If I keep pushing too hard, I'll continue to have setbacks. And more frustration.

Keeping Your Knee Pointed to the End Game

We went through my list of approved moves for this next week.
Here's what's new:

  • Cycling:  no more than 45 minutes at a time with a maximum of 1.5 hours per day
  • Passive range of motion with child's pose (with reduced weight on new knee)
  • Forward monster walk with band around ankles for 30 seconds, work up to 1 minute
  • Running Woman with blue band torque resistance.  30 seconds, work up to 1 minute

Plus my moves from last week...

  • Passive range of motion prone, with stretch strap
  • WALL:  Single leg wall sit (30 degrees only)
  • Wall sit while squeezing squishy ball between knees
  • 3-Way green band (stand on left leg, straight right leg side lift, forward lift, rear lift)
  • Monster walk with band, side to side
  • Running woman with trunk rotation.

Then EVIL TED made me look him in the eyes and PROMISE not to do more than this.  Should I tell you how hard that was?  I almost couldn't do it, but committed in the end.

Then I ran into a friend who set me straight

After my PT session, I ran into a friend.   And she had wise words, even though she didn't know it a the time,  she helped me to get my mind right:

  1. Her dog had knee surgery and she had to keep him from being too active.  I said, hey, sounds like me!  How do you do it?  Drugs she said.  Hmm, maybe should be MY solution!  Doggie downers until my knee is healed.  (Tempting...maybe I will have that Old Fashioned tonight after all?  ha-ha, drugs are not the answer.)
  2. SHE had a huge surgery 7 months before and is still recovering.  Her surgery was for something WAY more intense than just a knee replacement.  OK Robin, stop your whining and have patience.  
  3. "Your YEARS of knee pain aren't going to resolve in just a few weeks".  WAIT, WHAT?  Of course not.  What was I thinking?   Keep your eye on the long-term goal. 

My knee joint no longer hurts and that, in itself, is a miracle.  I need to have patience with the rest of the healing process.  After all, I gave up my trusted but arthritic knee for which my body had adapted everything for 56 years.  Now my body has to get used to a new way the knee moves.

- Of course my collateral ligaments are sore.

- Of course my quadriceps tendon (which was cut open) needs time to heal.

- Of course my knee cap, which was inverted and scraped out, needs time to feel good again.

I promise not to rush.

I will do my best to the right amount (not too little, not to much)

And in the end I will heal faster for it.

I hope you'll keep these words in mind as you heal too.



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