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Bad News.

I've started in on a cough.   Not a big one, but big enough that I was honestly concerned that I would tear. Then I took pain pills until the surgeon's office opened because a side effect of the heavy-duty pain drug I'm on is that it stops people from coughing.  I don't like doing that, using drugs off-label like that without seeing a doctor, but I had to get through the weekend.  The surgeon's office refused to see me for a cold yesterday, I went to our family physician.

He prescribed me still more pain drugs and said what I'd been doing is a good idea.  We sure don't want to upset the surgeon by opening this all up, he told me.  Well, ok then... I just don't want to turn into a junkie.

You won't, he said, because you don't have an "addictive personality" and you are using them for a set purpose and a short period of time.  I would tend to think a few weeks isn't a short period of time but I am not going to argue with him; I agree I can't be coughing with this huuuge opening in my gut just starting to heal.  I just can't.

I also checked in with my surgeon when I saw him today and told him what happened so that he wouldn't think I'm doctor-shopping for drugs.  Hey, but if your front office says I need to go somewhere else then that's what I'm going to do.  It's just odd, though, seeing the regular doctor over a tiny cough when really it's a surgery-related issue.  WHO would care about just going *cough* once or twice an hour otherwise?  Not me.

The surgeon told me to stay on the pain pills for about another week and then see if I still have a cough.  I like having a set time and also like having all the doctors be able to talk with each other.  I don't like not having people know what the other guy is doing and I'm glad there were no professional disagreements.  Just take the drugs, lady.

I was going to post what it looks like without the staples in but the whole thing, this whole gash is open and bloody and has LAYERS to it just like looking at the sides of a half-cooked steak.  It's THICK like a half-cooked steak, too. I mean, horror movie stuff.  I cried when I saw it... I could seriously whip off my shirt in a crowded place and scream that I've been stabbed and people would believe me, that's what it looks like.  Huge six-inch long gash, still bleeding a little actually.  And that is "normal" for what I've just been through.

Right now I'm on a lifting no more than 10 pounds restriction.  But the surgeon said I will never be able to lift more than 40-50 pounds. EVER again.  As in, I will never be able to lift my little children again.  I am so sad. I can't remember which time was the "last time" I got to pick them up, so I won't be able to have a goodbye picking up.  I don't know, that part makes me very sad.  And more than that, how am I going to handle things if I have to move to a new city?  OR even pick heavy stuff up at Sam's Club?  NEVER move over 50 pounds again?  How am I going to live like this?  People will think I think I'm a princess or something, making everyone else do MY work.  But I don't want to be back at the surgeon's place again.  These folks can patch you up, but you are never as good as new.  Each new patch is really not as good as the last one.

I'm not very happy about this at all, especially with the prospect of what if Woodjie runs away?  He doesn't understand about cars.  What if I am going on a trip alone?  I can't lift my own bag.  No fair packing bunches of stuff in different bags; it will still all weigh over 50 pounds.  I guess I'm in shock and have no clue how I will live the rest of my life like this.  I mean, it's not the worst thing that could happen to someone... there are harder things some people handle in this life... but I'm unhappy about it all.  :(


  1. You poor dear. Go lay back down. Just lay down.

    ps. I haven't lifted more than 50 pounds my entire adult life. I'd been told that women shouldn't. I have pushed heavy things across the floor though. That works.

  2. Oh, Mrs. C. I'm sorry. 50 pounds is a LOT, so maybe you don't lift that as often as you think. You can still sit on the couch and have your babies crawl into your lap; and you have a couple of big, strong males in your house who can help. Take it easy - focus on healing and worry about the rest another day. Hugs.

  3. Poor dear. Just relax until you are all better. I don't think I have lifted more than 20 lbs for 10 years .. And besides .. you're supposed to lift with the legs anyway! :)
    Hope you can get over your cough soon... Things will get better!

  4. Andrea, seriously you haven't lifted over 50 pounds? I did it all the time. Woodjie is 50-something and I'd carry him all over. I'd always be moving furniture or doing something. The surgeon after my last surgery told me just to go live life normally... and I did, except I was never comfortable doing things like sit-ups. So, I will likely never do sit ups again, either. :(

    Thanks for the hugs, Deb! I am spending the afternoon with a Diet Sunkist and letting the husband be the home-maker. He says he is going to order a corset and thigh-high boots so he will look *good* doing his job. Emmm... no.

    Thanks for the luv, Dad! I'm pretty sure your golf club sets weigh over 20 pounds, but I guess you don't lug them far. :)

  5. Oh I'm so sorry about the cough and the lifting. It's never just easy, is it? I'm with the rest of them though--I don't lift over 50 lbs. My kids aren't that big yet, but I rarely lift them because of my back problems (bulging disc). I sit down and let them cuddle with me. DH carries the groceries and he moves furniture when I need to vacuum under it. It's not always convenient, but let's face it if it keeps Mommy healthy it's worth it. You'll figure it out. Still--I'm so sorry. :-(

  6. Oh, I didn't know you lived with this restriction as well! It sounds like you just get used to it after a time, but the shock... I'm still sad.

  7. Your wound is still open and bleeding but they've taken the staples out? Am I reading this right? Because I'm of the opinion that if the wound hasn't closed the staples should remain in until it has.
    I agree with the doctor that a few weeks IS a short time, if you're still taking pain pills in 5 years you should probably be worried....

    Women aren't supposed to lift more than 50 pounds?? Heck I lift more than that with almost every customer's groceries I've bagged.
    No wonder my back and shoulders ache...

  8. It occurs to me that Hubby is expressing what he would look good on a homemaker... Since he probably associates that role with you. *just grins* Go shopping for your sizes!

    It is delightful to hear you are healing and going to be able to keep going. It is also good that there are drugs to stop the naughty coughing.

    On the weight thing, it will take adjustment and you will miss be able to do certain things, but we adapt to our restrictions. I also used to carry my lil one until she was six (and yes, that did damage to my back) and miss it very much, but I love not having to lean over to hug my now 12 year old girl. If the main people in your life understand the medical reason behind your restrictions and you teach them to encourage you to "behave safely", then people without the medical knowledge will respond to that. They will see that your family knows to not let you lift weights. This is a very effective way to show them the most positive way to respond to your choice to look after yourself and you might find people offering to lift things for you, rather than thinking less of you for not doing things they might have otherwise expected you to do.
    Peoples reaction are one of the strongest ways we decide what is the expected reaction to a situation - teach yours and they can teach others by example!

    And keep healing. :-)

  9. Don't worry about the scar ... your just as beautiful as ever ... won't make a difference to me ... not one little bit.

    As for the weight limitation ... you don't need to lift that much anyway. I know you will miss picking up woojie ... but you really need to take care of yourself ... and you don't need to pick up to hug!

    And for the thigh high with corset ... you should follow your friend's advice and just pick out your size ... hubba hubba!

    Love ya!

  10. River, it does look all bloody but it's not dripping. They say it is supposed to look like that. I am deeply disturbed. Just can't even look at it. :P I wish you didn't have to lift 50 pounds as well!

    Eccentricess: I KNEW D would see that comment and love it! I laughed all the way through. You have cheered me up officially.

    Thank you, D, for your kind letter and also for vacuuming the floor and sweeping up. It was driving me crayyy-zee. I know it didn't bug you so thanks for doing that for me. I love you as well. :)

  11. Mr D is a very wise man.

    Eccentricities gives very good advice.

    Please get well and know that the people who love you will adapt. Let them take care of you a little.

  12. Ok, I may have picked up my daughter past 50lbs, but it was rare, and I would sling her over my shoulder with her butt in the air and head hanging over my back. I am sure love taps were involved. She's 15 now, so It's been a while.

    But no... besides pushing a cabinet with my feet while sitting on the floor, I have not wrestled with anything else over 50 lbs.

    I just stand there and look at the heavy item... look at abled bodied man or giant son, and look at it again.

  13. Thank you, Mary!

    Andrea, I was still hip-carrying for the most part but the children are about 55 and 40 pounds respectively. I would carry them a LOT and actually that's discipline there, Mom puts you on the chair to sit and if you run away, Mom puts you there again until you calm down. :(

  14. The nurse will come out for just a minute.

    You won't get addicted if you are using medications to control pain. And, I don't remember reading anywhere in the Bible that we are going to get an extra jewel in our crown for putting up with more pain than we have to. So, keep yourself comfortable.

    Comfortable post-op is defined as that level of comfort that will allow you to cough, deep breath and walk about. These activities prevent complications. So just do them.

    As for the coughing. Get a small pillow (or a large one if you prefer, they are just kind of harder to keep nearby). When you cough, hold the pillow against your incision, give yourself a hug and support the site.

    What is it that country song says? ♫ ♪ "Scars heal, glory fades And all we're left with are the memories made. Pain hurts but only for a minute." ♪ ♫ ♪

    And, right about now, you are probably thinking, "I am glad she is 1000 miles away!" Singing people can be so annoying.

  15. Oo, I'm just impressed you could do the musical notes for me. That's a nice touch!! I will keep druggin' up, then, Julie. And seriously, I appreciate your writing. You don't benefit from my copays so I don't have to, you know, wonder about your objectivity. :)

  16. OH man! I know what you mean and hate having people serve me. Sheesh . I'm curious how this will work for you being a mom and independent like me.

  17. I'm trying to use this as a little vacation. Though I see how tired my husband is at the end of the day - this is not work he is used to, and he is not even homeschooling - and wonder if I can do it all when he leaves for work in a few weeks.

    Sleeping in is a BIG blessing. I am grateful for all this time and am trying to do it guilt-free because I've been told several times by the large bearded person of the house (no, not me, lol) that I need to heal; it is my JOB right now. :)

  18. Glad you're not the large bearded person in the house. LOL.

  19. Yeah, that would be pretty tough...


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