That’s right…. Just like the post says….. I ran 1 mile, uninterrupted, 5 months to the day after surgery and another 1.1 miles today. That doesn’t even include warm up and cool down!!!! The reason I posted this was not to brag(well maybe just a little, but I’m proud eh!!) but to help motivate people that are where I was in the earlier stages of the recovery process. So here is a small recap and some words of advice for the newest members of our club or even veterans that are stuck at some plateau.
5 months ago I was on my way home from the surgery thinking “what did I do to deserve this”. I got home and spent the next week laying on the fold-out getting very good at video games. I went from being very active to, well…… very inactive. As the next few weeks unfolded I began to get depressed and found myself wondering if I would even walk again. It is really easy for the depression to set in while laying around! After the second week I had a little slip and had to get recasted and was told I would be in for a few more weeks. 5 weeks in a cast, being at work rolling, around in my custom decorated wheelchair seemed like an eternity. Finally came time to get the cast off. If anyone has read my previous posts they know that this didn’t quite turn out to be the day of joy I had expected. I complained of pain in my calf and the doc sent me to the ER for an ultrasound where they found a blood clot in my leg. Next came a few blood thinning shots that night and the next afternoon. As if it wasn’t stressful enough to think I would have to take blood thinners for at least 6 months to get rid of the clot I start feeling really ill the night after the second dose of shots and pills. A middle of the night trip to the ER in an ambulance found me bleeding internally from the shots. Oops, too much medicine!!! I came home that morning and laid in bed.
This became one of those moments…….
I thought to myself, “That’s it, I’ve had enough. I WILL get better. I WILL walk, I WILL run, I WILL do it on my terms. I can’t let doctors be in control of my destiny, I must take over and fight to get better”.
From that day I stopped being depressed. Everyone will have one of those moments and how you respond will make a huge difference in the future of your recovery. I went physical therapy with a positive, almost competitive approach. My therapist laughed at me when I would get frustrated if I couldn’t do something. Even hitting a road block with muscle rebuilding ddin’t get me down this time. We found a new treatment and I kept pushing. The treatment worked and I made huge strides in recovery.
I finished PT on 12/31/08 and on the 5 month anniversary of my surgery, 1/6/09, I stepped onto a treadmill and said “I am going to run a mile”. It wasn’t easy but the determination took me to the end of the mile and now anything seems possible.
I know a lot of people that are at the laying in bed stage are thinking ‘yeah right’. That is exactly why I posted this long winded speech. I was there. I thought ‘yeah right’. But I found my moment and used it to kick the depression that set in. If you haven’t had one, you will. Just make sure you are looking for it. If you have had one, post something about it for others in a comment here.
There are probably people that have recovered faster or stronger than me but I think that running a mile at 5 months is a HUGE accomplishment and the thing I attribute it to is attitude. Once I shook the blah’s I never looked back.
Now I’m running from the blahs a mile at a time!!!!!
Happy New Year