Sunday, May 31, 2015

I'm having surgery tomorrow!

     I don't know about that exclamation point. I thought if I sounded excited about it, maybe I'd feel better. Like the title says, tomorrow I am undergoing surgery on my left ankle. Back in October, I had surgery on this ankle to repair a ligament and a tendon. The ligament is doing awesome, but the tendon is not. The MRI didn't provide an entirely clear picture of what the problem is, so the surgery is mostly exploratory. The doctor will repair anything that needs repaired.
     Despite the implications of my title, I'm not thrilled about this, because who gets excited about surgery? I do know that it is the best option at this point. I've been resting, elevating my leg, and using a walking boot for two months since the pain increased, and nothing has gotten better. The good news is, I have a new doctor, and he seems more thorough than the previous one.
     Since I've been injured, people will frequently ask, "What happened?" Valid question, right? Yes, but not always an easy one to answer. It started out simple, but as time passed, the answer got more and more complicated.
      "I fell and sprained my ankle."
      "I had a sprain that didn't heal, so I had surgery."
      "I'm still recovering from surgery."
      "I fell at work while assisting a client walk. He tripped and bumped my knee as he fell. I lost my balance and went down with him. After three months of a gel cast and physical therapy I had surgery to repair a ligament. Several months after surgery, once I became active again, we noticed that I had a tendon that wasn't healed. Now I'm having surgery again."
     Is anyone asleep yet? I don't blame you if you are. Nobody wants to hear all of that, especially when we're on an elevator or standing in line at the grocery store. I'm beginning to think I should make something up, yet I have yet to think of anything interesting. I know, shame on me. I'm a writer, I should be able to think of something. In my defense, I've been putting most of my energy into my novel and my blog. If anyone has any creative ideas about how I injured myself, feel free to share them. The winner gets bragging writes.
     Since I've already had a very similar surgery less than a year ago, I know what to expect. My boyfriend says this is a good thing. He's right to an extent, but it also means that I know what to expect. Pain. Nausea. Potential vomiting. Pain. My cat trying to sit on my foot. The fun of crutches. The agony of having an itch buried underneath a cast. The dignity of scooting up the stairs to my second floor apartment.
     Worst of all, I have come to fear the very idea of being in intense pain. The kind of pain that's so bad  you feel nauseous, you can't sleep, you can't think, and sometimes you can hardly even speak. The kind of pain that makes you want to scream for it to stop. That right there is the frightening part. When you're in so much pain that you feel like you don't even exist, all you are is a giant nerve of pain.
     I realize I'm being a bit dramatic, but I'm a writer. It's what we do. I've gotten through these moments before, and I know I'll get through them again, but it's difficult not to dread them.
     What I'm really upset about is the idea that I might have to take a short break from writing while I'm recovering. I know it will probably just be a week or so before I'll have the energy to write again, but right now that feels like a very long time. I write nearly everyday. The only days I don't are when I'm so burned out I have to force myself to take a break. My novel is like my child. It is a part of me. My characters feel real. They are real. I think about them all the time. The idea of leaving them even for a short period is almost painful.
     Hopefully, time will pass quickly as I binge watch Netfilx and read the various books I've lined up. I already can't wait to get back to my masterpiece. (Hopefully it's a masterpiece.) Wish me luck.