Monday, July 18, 2011

You Gotta Have Friends

My Friend, Deb and I 

I was feeling pretty low yesterday.  I'd been told at Physical Therapy on Friday that I needed to elevate and use more ice, because my swelling had yet to subside since my surgery, three weeks ago, today.  I spent most of the weekend on my back, with my knee up above my heart, with ice, or in the motion machine.  I wasn't a happy camper.  It meant being reduced to either reading, watching TV or sleeping.  I was getting pretty sick of all those activities.  For awhile, I propped my laptop on a pillow on my belly, but it wasn't working out so well.

Sometime Sunday afternoon, I called my friend, Deb, because I needed to hear her voice.  I needed to connect in a more personal way than via email, or blog posts.  The funny thing is, that I didn't know that was what I needed, until she answered the phone and we started talking.

As all good friends do, she commiserated while I told her the latest setbacks on my recovery journey.  She listened.  I thanked her, again, for introducing my blog on her blog last Friday.  We talked about how powerful it was for me to suddenly have all these new avenues to explore, new stories to read, new places to visit.  Every moment I was able to be up over the weekend I reveled in the new experience of making connections through other people's blogs.  I had no idea what I had been missing. And, I came to realize through our conversation that what really had been holding me hostage during the past few weeks has been this crippling sense of isolation.

It's like the old saying, "Be careful what you pray for" because I used to dream of having a few hours all to myself. I've been somebody's wife or mother for most of my adulthood, and time alone has been precious and hard to come by. I yearned to have time to myself.  

Well, I got it- days and more mind-numbing days of it! I've totally lost count of how many books I've read.  I've watched more TV in the past few weeks than I've watched in the last 15 years. I wanted time to myself to do the things I wanted to do, not lay around for weeks waiting for my knee to heal. 

I'm grateful to have my trusty black lab, Nikki, as without her, I would have no one to talk to all day.  Nikki has been my constant companion, never far from my chair.  She did learn quickly that lying under the recliner wasn't the best idea when I needed to get up! Most of the time, she lays on the floor, usually right in the pathway I need to take to get where I'm going.  While I was using the walker, she gave it clear berth.  The cane doesn't faze her, and we're back to the usual comment from me, "Nikki, move please!" as I hobble toward the kitchen or bathroom.  Then she follows me, and plops down to await my next move.

So, I'm isolated, but not on a deserted island.  I have my new blog friends, and other friends I can call when I'm blue.  I have Nikki, bless her little doggy heart. I have my laptop, and eventually, I'll be able to get back to transcribing my great grandfather's letters, a personal goal for this summer.  (Deb had a great suggestion of using a separate keyboard.  My daughter has one she isn't using and has promised she'll dig in her room and find it for me after work!) So, I have a lot to keep me busy.

Did laying around this weekend help?  Not so much, I don't think.  My knee looks as fat as ever to me.  But, I was able to complete the exercises today, and ride my bike (I could, I could!) and while walking doesn't seem to be any easier, it isn't any harder, either.  So, I think I'll just take it a day at a time and be thankful for friends.  

A special thank you to all who have visited my blog and left comments.  I am excited to read your stories and expand my world.  It's good to have friends!

My Nikki Girl - looking kinda sad


  1. It's funny how life throws us curve balls. I spend most of the school year wishing I wasn't so darn busy. Then I spend a lot of my summer wishing I had something to do that didn't cost me money. It's a catch-22. I'm glad you found blogging to be a release. I always look forward to what people think is interesting about my life. It helps me to look at it (my life) in a different light.

  2. I think you're making progress...when you think about what your poor knee has endured it's amazing how hard the body tries to fix itself. Just keep doing what you're doing and I'll keep coming by to see how you are. Remember, you are not alone in this! I'll send a cyber hug! Cute doggie by the way!

  3. I empathize with the frustration you are experiencing while forcibly housebound, but you will get through this and be able to look back and be grateful for having made a full recovery. It's good to know you managed your exercises and rode your bike. That's already an improvement. Wise decision to take things one day at a time. Nikki is rooting for you every day, willing you to get strong again so you can have fun together. And just think! This time it will be without any pain in your knee!

  4. I've always said that, when you're sick, television is the greatest invention in the world.

  5. You have to remember, it takes tiny steps to heal and it sounds to me as if you are going in the right direction.
    Crawling into bed and covering your head doesn't work. Ask one who knows!
    Keep moving forward with the exercises a few more minutes a day.
    It's a tough surgery you've been thru and takes a lot out of you.
    You have friends out here in blogland rooting for your recovery. So keep on keeping on. Besides you have beautiful Nicki by your side.
    Blessings and praying for your recovery.

  6. Here's hoping that six months from now you'll be running around with Nikki just like before and this will all be a painful memory.

    Take care and be patient with yourself.

  7. Well, this is a lovely first: to come here and have to take my turn at the end of the line to comment.:-)

    I'm honored that I get to be a part of your journey. Our conversation on Sunday helped me at least as much as it did you. What would we do without our dogs and our friends?

    Great picture of us! Your birthday, right?

    Sending big loves to you, and hoping to see you one of these days soon.

  8. I've read your July postings now and applaud your coming to grips with your operation. Everyone's comment is so encouraging and everyone recognizes that you're on a journey of acceptance of something new and different. Daily your whole response to this is changing. Thank you for inviting us to witness your dawning. I've just started blogging also and your words--"I have my new blog friends, and other friends I can call when I'm blue. I have Nikki, bless her little doggy heart. I have my laptop, and eventually, I'll be able to get back to transcribing my great grandfather's letters, a personal goal for this summer" resonate with me. I have three cats instead of Nikki and I have a novel to write and so, Sandi, we're in this together!!!! Peace in Oneness


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