I’ve been home from hospital for 9 days now so I thought I should get around to writing a post about my experience and where we’re at.
To cut a long story short my initial injury spans back to October of last year and after many physio and specialist appointments and 5 months of time later I was still in pain. A repeat MRI showed that my stress fracture wasn’t healing. My specialist looked at the MRI results on a Friday afternoon, called the surgeon there and then and had me booked in to see him on the Monday. I came out of that appointment a tad shell-shocked and booked in for surgery the following Tuesday. That surgery was to insert a dynamic hip screw to stabilise the fracture site and prevent the requirement for bed rest.
The fact that we had no time to agonise over the decision was only a good thing. Next step was operation ‘spreadsheet’. Don’t laugh – with 4 kids to account for I had to call on friends and family to share the load!
I felt nauseous the morning before I went into hospital. I dropped Charlie off at his best mate Jake’s house and took Ella to kinder, all things normal. I then went home, put a few last minute things into my bag and, leaving Ruby & Poppy with Joules, set off for hospital. Alan came with me but was only able to stay a short time before going home for the kids. I was admitted at 11 and having been fasting since 8, I was already starving! The nurse came in to tell me I was second patient on the 13:30 list so I should expect to go to theatre around 14:30. This eventually turned into 16:00 by which point I begged for a sip of water.
It was a bizarre feeling lying in what they called the ‘holding bay’ wondering what everyone else was in for and watching the general comings & goings. My anaesthetist came by to discuss the options of general and spinal anaesthetic – I chose spinal simply because I’d rather not have a general when there was another option. And so my journey to theatre began feeling a bit drowsy from the sedative.
I remember bits and pieces, especially the anaesthetist talking to me but also noises from the surgeon at work. The great thing about not having a general was that the time I spent in recovery was shortened and I was awake and functioning when the kids came in to visit with Alan that night. The numbness didn’t wear off till later on that night and that’s when the strong painkillers were needed. I had no idea how painful those first 24 hours would be!
I remained in bed until the following afternoon when the physio (Ruth a lovely Irish lady) came to see me. She helped me out of bed and supervised some walking with the aid of a zimmer frame. We didn’t even leave my room but it was enough to tire me out. That’s another thing I wasn’t prepared for – the tiredness that I felt and also the queasiness and sickness brought on by the painkillers. It sounds horrendous but all this probably only lasted 48 hours and then I started to feel better. I progressed to crutches when I felt more confident and then started some gentle exercises to strengthen my leg. I was in hospital for 5 nights which gave me plenty of time to rest, read (yes my mum friends I know this is a luxury we don’t often have), eat chocolate and start my recovery. And so we went home….
Being home was a whole different ball game. Alan, my sisters and my dear friends (you know who you are) have been fantastic doing everything around the house and looking after all of the kids. From my perspective while I’m truly thankful, it is the most frustrating and emotionally draining thing not to be able to do things for yourself and help your own kids. But, that was last week and this week I’m getting stronger so much so that I’ve managed Ruby & Poppy for a few hours here and there by myself. I may not be able to carry them around but I can sit down on the floor and play. I’m seeing the surgeon again on Monday when he’ll hopefully remove the stitches and plan for coming off the crutches. I think we may be a few weeks off that yet. I laughed at Ella tonight who announced that on Wednesdays she “lives at Zoe’s house”. Yes, she has been sleeping over there on Wednesdays for the past few weeks and similarly Charlie has been sleeping over at Jake’s – I believe they are going to be very distressed when this fun activity stops once mummy is back in action.
Mummy back in action, now there’s a thought – I’ll need to do all the laundry myself again, cook dinners, drive kids to kinder & childcare…..it’s a thought but I honestly can’t wait! Hopefully it won’t be too long…