Daniel (Danny) Lance Wright, Author

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Living Life By Degrees

Today I continue living life by degrees, literally. This, I’m sure, requires an explanation.

It might appear that, once again, I virtually vanished from the blogging and social media scene. And, in a way, I did. January 15th I had total knee replacement in my right leg, the result of age and an injury that ended a football career before the age of sixteen. I’ll leave that part of the story for another day. Such surgery is neither unusual nor isolated. In fact, I have many friends and acquaintances that have undergone the procedure. All but one that I sought opinions from indicated it had been a good decision to get it done. That was all I needed to hear after suffering for a number of years with a bowed leg and pain.

I totally underestimated the amount of time and pain involved in the rehabilitation process afterward.

If I’m not manipulating and stretching the joint at home, I’m icing it several times a day, plus going in for supervised physical therapy regularly. It’s not only exhausting but leaves little time for anything else. I had been working on a novel that I haven’t added a single word to since the second week of January. (By the way, hydrochodone I’m taking for pain is a creativity killer. It sort of makes me not care about anything.)

The orthopedic surgeon filled my head with scary stories of racing scar tissue before it set up and ruined my range-of-motion that might require additional surgery just to scrape it away or risk limited mobility permanently. I began physical therapy with a dismal 32 degrees of flexibility. I had to get it beyond 90 degrees within the first month and to between 110 and 120 degrees within six weeks. Now you can see why I’m living life by degrees. Currently, I’m at a 105 degree bend and breathing a bit easier and taking less pain medication. So, here I sit, blogging. It's worth noting, though, I haven’t had a pain pill yet today. I actually seem to have a few successfully firing synapses.

I’m almost ready to hit the resume button on life, but not quite. If you’ll excuse me, I must go ice the damn thing again. It’s swelling just sitting here.