June 02, 2014

How to survive post-operative phase AKA those non-productive days after operation Part 1

Rule number 1 is "Take it Easy". No matter how much you want to take that vacuum cleaner out and clean the house. Leave those black dog hairs on the floor, as long as you can navigate your way from bedroom to restroom and kitchen. Hopefully you have family and friends around, who can help you. It does not always mean that the shorter the hospital stay, the easier it is to recover. Not necessarily so at all. First few days are ok and fine to stay in bed for the most part of the day, but then I notice there are things that need doing, such as taking that vacuum cleaner out. Unfortunately, or fortunately mine is still in the box, unopened, gift-wrapped and taped, stapled, so I could not possibly get it out without help. Doggy hairs are still on the floor and they remain there until I can do something about it. Good old dustpan will do in the meantime.
I'm not a good typical compliant patient. This is why I overdid it yesterday. There were places to go to, people and animals to see and I simply had to do it all. I was still up at 11pm, got woken up by "Chewie" the dog (he was once called Charlie, but because he loves to chew, he is now Chewie) at 6am, took him out for potty break and nearly passed out. Came back in, drank water, fed Chewie and took a nap on the living room sofa.
Take it easy becomes a golden rule 1. It has purpose and a meaning, it's not there just to tell you to take a vacation and go out partying. It's there to help to flush anesthesia toxins out of the system, kick constipation in its butt, keep painkillers at hand, take long showers, eat well, drink a lot of water and sleep, watch TV, fall asleep in the middle of a good movie, wake up dazed and confused, hungry, thirsty and in pain... Aarrrrgghhhh! Those moments asleep on the sofa become very precious, because healing really happens when you are asleep and with a bit of luck pain won't wake you up. My dog sleeps on the floor next to me, keeping an eye on me. He takes care of my exercise requirements, which are just short walks outside, but little by little I can add extra minutes and yards and make them longer. Without the dog, I don't think I'd be outside much.
Take it easy- but yes, do something. Do it and then plan to be back on the living room sofa for the next few hours. Enjoy being non-productive, because those days when you have no choice (i.e. back to work, school..) are on their way. I have 5 more days left and I'll enjoy them as much as I can.

PS: Dried prunes are great for constipation... and dude, please don't throw me overboard...



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