Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Twelve Weeks

Pretty soon I'll be looking at monthly, vs. weekly updates. The three month RPAO anniversary is coming up soon!

Right now there isn't much new to report. Progress comes, but more slowly. I am working with my physical therapist twice per week to build up strength. She says I am doing phenomenally well. I feel like my leg strength is coming back nicely. Unless I am tired I barely limp any more. I can get up out of a chair using only my right leg (something I'll need to do with PAO#2). I can do 20 minutes on the elliptical (I could do more but she won't let me yet).

Flexibility is and will always be compromised, although I am doing what I can to work on it. Things that used to be easy on the ice like spirals, sit spins, lunges, and hydroblades are now out of my repertoire forever. Those were things we used in our free dance choreography. Nice high turned out extensions which I learned to fake in the past are probably not even fake-able any more. I am not sure I will have enough turnout to do choctaws or even mohawks, but that is something I'll explore when I am able to get out on the ice in about a month. I learned to cheat them before, so now I may be able to ultra-cheat them. Probably not enough to fool judges in a test.

I am going back to see Dr. Mayo October 20th to discuss timing for PAO#2. I would like to do it this year so that I don't have to pay the out-of-pocket co-pays and deductible again next year; that adds up to several thousands of dollars. I am also interested in getting PAO#2 over with as soon as possible so I can go on with my life.

Keri, the scheduler at Dr. Mayo's office, informed me there are two open surgery dates in 2009: November 18th and December 21st. The November date is only 19 weeks after the first PAO (and 7 weeks from today). Doctors usually won't do the second PAO until 6 months after the first, to allow the first side to heal enough to bear all the weight during the 8 weeks of recovery for the second. I am skeptical that Dr. Mayo will actually allow me to go forward on November 18th, but Keri has me penciled in.

Am I psychologically ready to go through this again so soon? That is the question. Having both PAOs behind me so quickly is certainly a bonus. Recovering during the end-of-year holidays doesn't really bother me; we were going to have thanksgiving at our house but that can easily be changed. Work is slower than normal in November and December and the weather is lousy, so staying in the house on the couch by the fireplace actually sounds OK by me.

The one thing that keeps bothering me is that I have had such an easy recovery with PAO#1. Will PAO#2 be as easy? Will I have complications with my left leg, which has always been somewhat weaker than my right leg and where the dysplasia is worse? Will my expecations be too high and will I be disappointed? Will my flexibility be even worse when both hips are done? I can only hope for the best.

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