Knee Update – Four Weeks Out

I had a full knee replacement surgery done four weeks ago.

Tuesday last week I had a definite shift, turned a corner, as it were. The pain levels dropped dramatically. Instead of all my muscles screaming, it changed overnight into more of a stretchy hurt. I can work with this. I’ve been stretching more, trying to get the muscles back to where they need to be.

My PT canceled on Friday, so I’m curious to see where I’m at in terms of flexibility. However, I know I’ve improved. Last Thursday I tried riding the pedal machine and it just required my knee to bend too much. But by Sunday, I was able to pedal for a minute. I didn’t push it to two, as I quit as soon as it started to hurt.

My stamina has improved quite a bit this last week as well. Last week I was unable to make bacon. It’s a more complicated process than it sounds. We get the Hempler’s bacon ends. Two pounds of bacon for $5.99. I chop up the entire package and cook it all at once, then we eat the pieces like bon bons, putting them in everything.

At the start of last week, I was able to cut up all the bacon, but about halfway through cooking it, I had lost all my stamina. (Realize that I’m tough enough that I could have pushed through. It didn’t make sense for me to do that though, not at that time.) This weekend, I was able to make pate, which takes about an hour of being on my feet and cooking, so about the same effort as making bacon. Mind you, I sat my ass back down on the couch almost immediately afterward and iced my knee. It was still a significant improvement.

Another way I saw my stamina increase – I was able to start and finish writing a Medium article yesterday. Did about 1000 words in an hour. That was lovely and the first time I’d been able to have that much focus for a month or more.

I’m averaging about 5000 steps per day, which at first was too much but is finally about right. I shouldn’t push it. I might appear to be getting in more steps when I start riding the pedal machine regularly. I figure that’s okay. Those additional steps won’t have the jarring impact of walking.

I’m still losing weight. Not a lot, just another pound this last week. I blame the pain meds, which are continue to work as an appetite suppressant for me. I’m rarely interested in food.

One of the things we did last week was we went to the grocery store and I just picked up foods that looked good, that I thought I’d eat, rather than trying to follow my regular diet. I got what we’ve taken to calling “deconstructed salad.” It’s a large party tray of veggies. Everything is already cut up and bite-sized, it’s really easy for me to demolish sections of it for lunch every day. Will probably go get another one this week. It’s expensive, but at least I’m eating. And that’s kind of the point here.

I started reading again, yesterday. That is sheer delight, to have the brain to be able to follow along with a story. I’m reading “Hail Mary” by Andy Weir. I am skimming some of the science stuff but I don’t feel bad about that – even if I had full brain I’d still skim some of that material. I’m about a quarter of the way through and had been enjoying it thoroughly.

As for swelling – some days are still better than others. Over all I think that the swelling has gone down, but there’s still quite a bit to go. I didn’t ice as much over the weekend as I probably should have, so I’m going to try to make up for it today.

We have had tremendous wind storms out here this weekend. I’m surprised that we still have power. Please, but anticipating that the power will go again at some point, probably sooner rather than later.

So this afternoon there will be errands. And PT. And maybe a chicken cauliflower stir-fry for dinner. What are you looking forward to?

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