I’ll take that lying down.

Good Evening Achilles’ tendon rupture community!

My last update was about my feelings/fears around the anaesthesia awareness. I did speak fulsomely to the anaesthetist and the surgeon. I will not burden this community with the ins and outs of it all, and will  instead move on to the unfolding discovery of just how much this injury and resulting surgery are impacting on my life! You may be shaking your head thinking ‘didn’t she read anyone else’s blog! How is she surprised?’ I must admit to a curious ability to ignore information until it is actually standing in front of me slapping me across the face. So pain…yes quite a lot. The meds are great but I do know when 6 hours are up and am happily swilling down 2 paracetamol and one 5 mg of oxycodone. Until this experience I would have tried to be more stoic and suffer the pain but since being educated about the way pain works I happily try to knock even the not-so-bad pain out as rapidly as possible. Challenge #2 must be the en pointe position of my foot. One must be vigilant to avoid bumping, scraping, dangling. And keeping it elevated! There is a lot of sitting and lying down in my life right now. This makes keeping oneself busy just a tad tricky.  So I’ve made the choice to stay as recumbent as possible until Monday when I will start to discover where my boundaries are.  That is something that seems to work for me…. Schedules …even totally arbitrary ones. Most of my planning is based on the information from this community. I imagine you all as fit and virile so I put myself behind the curve in my expectations of recovery but I do like having something to hop toward.

Farewell for now I must get back to doing nothing…

The operation - more than I wanted to know

The Achilles’ tendon operation
Just had one of the most terrifying experiences of my life. I woke up on the operating table to hear people discussing who had eaten and what they had had…. And then I could feel the surgeon  start to operate on my heel. I felt injections going in each side of my lower calf and then felt him cutting! I couldn’t move the tiniest part of my body. I kept trying to just move a finger to let them know I was awake. It was simply terrifying.  I concentrated with all my might and I couldn’t move the tiniest thing. Seriously seriously terrifying. I was conscious of lying face down and I had zero memory of moving into that position. It was just that I was suddenly wide awake and they were chatting and laughing and CUTTING! It was like some horrible nightmare.
When I accepted I couldn’t move  I forced myself to breath deeply and relax. If I had to put a time on how long I was awake it would be 3-5 minutes. Possibly less… But holy hellhole  it was traumatising.  I tried to ensure anaesthetist    I was all loosey goosey with it but as soon as I saw Michael I couldn’t stop crying.
I don’t want to make a fuss but I am not sure how to negotiate my feelings about the experience. It’s not the memory of the pain although that was awful it is the memory of the total lack of power to let them know I was awake. I concentrated so hard to move the tiniest muscle but nothing. I am so very pleased with myself for calming myself.
The pain in my heel is still bad. I can’t imagine I will sleep well tonight. I do think I’ve been traumatised.
I am thirsty and uncomfortable. I have oxygen tubes in my nose and a drip.
So fellow travellers just when I thought things couldn’t get more weird I had that experience.  I wrote that last night whilst still in hospital. I didn’t sleep as I just kept reliving the nightmare. BUT now I’m home.  And now that I’m home and safe I’m feeling much more sanguine about the whole thing. On the very bright side the paracetamol and oxycodone are doing a brilliant job of controlling the pain. My timeline is 2 weeks in cast ( non weight bearing) 4 weeks in boot (non weight bearing). Then… I’m not really sure. Obviously I was distracted in the question asking department. Thank you mhamay for the knee walker tip. I’d not heard of them before but now I’ve rented one for the duration… Later…

Rupture or Rapture?

A blog.

I simply can not get a grasp on how people interact in this world. In light of this I am going to assume no one is reading this but enjoy the flicker of attention I get when I tell people I am writing a blog. I have ruptured my Achilles. I had never even heard of an Achilles rupture until it happened to me. This is obviously because I am no sports fan. Sporty friends and family have said to me,
“An Achilles rupture.. well that’s a season ending injury, sometimes a career ending injury”
As an observation I find it less than soothing. Looking on the bright side I don’t play sports so nothing is being ruined in that department.
I have surgery planned for tomorrow. I have been told I will remain in hospital overnight because they want to control the pain relief. I am inferring from this that there will be quite an amount of pain.  I am interested to discover just how bad this pain will be. Without any exaggeration I spent 15 minutes swearing when it happened. So that was painful, very. It wasn’t the initial snap but rather the incremental then rapid escalation of waves and waves of pain.
It has been two weeks since the rupture and there is very little pain now. I can put weight on my leg. Against instruction yesterday I removed the cast I had fitted at the emergency room as it had become uncomfortably wet during a botched shower. So today I am discovering not extra pain but a curious sensation wherein my foot feels like it is no longer attached. There is a ‘dangling’ feeling that almost turns my stomach. I have long endeavoured to endure pain stoically ( although I can simply NOT help vocalising pain, as in ‘ow ow ow I’ve stubbed my toe or a multitude of different versions). So I am trying to convince myself that it is interesting rather than nauseating.
The anaesthetist just rang to inform me of tomorrow’s process. I will be put under a general anaesthetic. I will lay face down for the 1-1 1/2 hours it takes to do the operation. As a result of this I may experience a sense of swelling in my eyes and face. I may, more likely as I’m a woman, feel the call to vomit. They will give me medication to try and avoid this but….I may also have a sore throat from the tube down my throat that is taking over the task of breathing. Now I must to confess to a small amount of shock. I didn’t know you stopped breathing under general anaesthetic. I now ask myself why I didn’t stop to ask why the huge masks etc etc used in the many TV operations I have witnessed over the years were necessary. I am finding this very interesting. I am 51 and have never been admitted to hospital or had any sort of surgery before this incident. From my perspective the most important part of this journey will be to ensure I do not descend into desolation. Whilst I don’t play sport I do ( pre A. R.) walk for anywhere from 1 to 3 hours a day. I walk my dog, I chat to people, I enjoy being out in the world. I live in Melbourne and love the city and the people especially the dogs. From the looks of things that won’t be happening soon. Hence the blog…
To Michael, who is clearly the only one still reading, I promise to do my best in the cheery invalid department. Let’s see what tomorrow brings..