Disclaimer: These knees are not pretty.
I know its not good for a person but I used to eat Tylenol and Advil like it was candy to get through my days. I tried to not let my knees hold me back from what I wanted to do...and for the most part I think I did a really good job at that. I still was a super busy person...floral work, craft shows and classes, holiday window painting, camping, ATV riding, BBQ contests, water aerobics, walk Cassy, everyday stuff...the list goes on. The day I pulled into the Michael's parking lot and didn't get out of the car I knew I'd met my limits. I just sat in my car and cried...I felt truly defeated.
A new round of X-rays showed that there was no cartilage left, my knees were bone-on-bone. No wonder every movement was painful.
One year ago today I hobbled into the hospital for a double knee replacement. It had been a 15 year process to get to that point for me. I have been through years and years of cortisone shots every three months, I tried the gel shots...they worked for about a year to 15 months, and 3 rounds of arthroscopic surgery on my knees.
I was actually excited for this. Seriously, kinda weird I know. Who in the right mind would be excited to have surgery on both knees at the same time? Me!
I spent 10 days in the hospital and rehab. I really didn't want to go to rehab but am so glad I did. It was worth the extra time away from home. I spent 8 hours a day on the CPM machines, occupational therapy, physical therapy and exercise. I came home and spent another 3 weeks on the CPM machines for 8 hours a day. I had a great home care nurse that came everyday and a physical therapist that pushed me.
This is what they look like today.
I got clearance to do pretty much whatever I want to do from Dr. Bradford in January. In May, we went to Moab, Utah for a week of ATV riding and exploring. I even hiked about 3 miles...a huge deal and success for me! We spent Labor Day riding and exploring the Paiute Trail from Marysvale, Utah. What a great time.
Barbecue contests and catering have been sooo much more enjoyable. Turn-ins are not something I dread now. I look forward to doing more very soon.
I just finished up my three largest craft shows and I have to say what a difference a year makes. It was like comparing day and night in the way that I felt during and when they were complete.
I feel blessed to be able to have both knees replaced. It is a life changing event for me. I've had a great support system behind me with my hubby, parents, and friends and family. I continue to go to my water aerobics class, its so good for me. We've bought bikes and ride 3-4 nights a week...Cassy has even learned to trot along beside me. We even look forward to it.
I would recommend having knee replacements for anyone that is considering it. I also highly recommend my orthopedist, Dr. Michael Bradford. He's amazing!