Three weeks down, three weeks to go

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My surgery was 3 weeks ago yesterday.  Recovery is going very well.  I have been cooking dinners.  I can do laundry (I don’t carry a full laundry basket–I let Hubby do it).  I can check for chicken eggs (we are getting eggs again! I’m so excited to be getting fresh eggs again! And the Ancona is laying–finally–so we have brown, green, and white eggs at last!).  And I have been going to the gym for an hour every day for the past week, walking on the treadmill.  I have worked up to a pace of 3.5 miles per hour.  This, combined with my morning walks with The Stinker, means I’m getting upwards of 4-5 miles of walking in every day.  This feels good.  I feel good.  My sutures are healing up nicely; today is the first day that I have not had a little bit of swelling and tenderness above the suture line when I’m walking the treadmill, so I am taking this as a really good sign that things are progressing nicely.  Am I starting to go a little stir crazy not being able to exercise at full strength?  Yes and no.  I haven’t felt like running yet, so that is good, otherwise I might have to fight myself to not do something stupid and overexert myself.  Until today, things have still felt a little….what’s the right word….hmmm, sensitive?  Maybe that’s not quite the right way to put it, but it seems things have still been settling into their new routine down there, just getting adjusted to the new space that was created—my “lady void,” as I have coined it.  Today is the first day that I have felt almost the same as I did before my surgery.  And I still have THREE WEEKS to go!  Oh…the agony.

Not really.  I mean, now that I’ve worked up to a good clip on the treadmill, I am actually capable of breaking a (small, but significant) sweat.  I think I can increase my pace just a little bit more and still not reach a jog.  So if I can do that, I’ll feel like I’m getting a pretty good workout and I won’t be such a whiner about it.  And if the trails would ever get in shape, I could just go hike.  But that’s the bummer–we had all this snow right before and immediately after my surgery.  But the past week and a half it has been really warm here, and all of the snow is melting.  You’d think that would be a good thing for the trails, but it’s not because 1) the snow on the trails gets compacted by hikers and bikers, so while everything else is melted off around the trail, the trail turns into an icy bobsled track, and 2) in places where the ice has melted off the trail, it’s pretty muddy and I don’t like to hike when the trails are muddy because it messes them up.  Plus, either way, the trails are slippery and a fall hazard for me.  No good.

But the good news is the sidewalks are all clear, so Stinker and I can go on nice, long neighborhood and downtown walks with no reservations.  Then I hit the gym to get a little more rigorous workout–it’s working out pretty well so far.

I’ve been studying American Sign Language, and I’m picking up quite a bit for not having a formal course or anyone to converse with.  I live in such a small town that I don’t know anyone who is deaf or hard of hearing who knows ASL.  One of my friends has a deaf friend with whom he can only communicate through texting or writing on a whiteboard, so I might have an opportunity to meet a deaf person with whom to practice sign and maybe help my friend learn sign language (he knows the sign for “beer” and that’s all).  I am a little bit excited by this possibility.  The more I learn about sign language and Deaf culture, the more I want to become fluent (as much as possible) in ASL!

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How cute is this little guy??  It’s my green fig tree my friend sent me after my surgery last year beginning to bud out.  I love fig leaves.  I think they are so beautiful.  And it’s nice to have something new and green to look at in the middle of winter.  I have my other house plants, but this is the only one that is waking up from dormancy right now.  The others are pretty much evergreen.  I also have an area in the basement set up for starting seeds: shelves, lights, heating mats (on the way), and a seed big seed stash  (and more arriving tomorrow).  I’m getting ready to start some onions, shallots, and herbs this weekend.  With all this warm weather lately, the spring bug has really hit me.  I’m no dummy, though, we’ll get more snow and cold weather before too long.  But at least I’ll have something green growing in my basement!  Gardening in the middle of winter–I love it!

I made some pretty awesome (if I do say so myself) almond sugar cookies tonight.  Hubby had a bad day today, so I made them after dinner to help cheer him up.  I’ll post the recipe tomorrow–but here’s a little photo just as a teaser…

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Finally, I’ve been keeping a journal of my surgery recovery so I can keep track of my progress, and the ups and downs (very few downs!) along the road to recovery.  Included in my journal are hysterectomy haikus, and I’ve written several over the past couple of weeks that I thought I’d share.  They sort of follow my progress from the time I got home from the hospital.  A couple have explanatory notes at the end.  Enjoy!

Home from surgery / Hormones begin this evening / A new life for me

I’m feeling better / With every day improvement / Oh what a relief

Astounding progress / Happy to be this mobile / It caught me off guard

An obstinate cuss / Help not needed, no thank you / Hubby rolls his eyes

It’s been so easy / Dumbfounded with my body / What a way to heal!

Weight loss, losing boobs / Why can’t I choose where fat leaves? / It’s all so unfair (1)

Let my body heal / I will be made whole again / It just takes some time

My hand; numb, tingles / The damage is leaving me / Get back to normal (2)

It’s true I can’t wait / To run, lift weights, and Zumba / Slow…all in good time

Walk, walk, walk some more / Burning holes in treadmill floors / Just three weeks to go

Only three weeks out / I’m feeling normal again / I’m loving this life

Hysterectomy / I now have a lady void / No more pain, bleeding

NOTES:

(1) Shortly after my surgery I noticed that I was losing mass in the boobs department.  I am blaming it on the loss of body fat from my time at the gym prepping for surgery.  It bummed me out a little bit because I’m not well-endowed in this arena to begin with…Hubby barely noticed (he had to take a loooooong look…) and he says I shouldn’t be upset.  It doesn’t really bother me…but it still does.

(2) After I got home from the hospital I noticed a tingly feeling in the pad of my left hand between my thumb and my wrist.  I was pretty sure it was nerve damage from using my left arm to reach across my body and grab the side rails on the hospital bed to help myself out of bed.  For about 2 weeks the numbness increased, to the point where I was beginning to wonder if I was going to suffer permanent nerve damage, but it began subsiding just after the 2 week mark.  Now, 3 weeks out, the numbness is almost completely gone.  Shwew!

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