By Kiara LeBouton
(Kiara is a senior in high school in the Midwest and is a fellow hopeful hippie! She posted before her surgery. She is currently 4 weeks post op from hip arthroscopy. Her outlook is inspiring and honest.)
Hello my fellow hipsters! It’s Kiara, back again. I have now conquered surgery and I’m 4 weeks out and on my way to recovery. I want to give my advice and what my journey has been like. I’m not going to beat around the bush. So I’m just going to say that this recovery has its up and downs. It will be challenging. You will feel helpless. You might get very anxious or upset over little things. You will go crazy if you are unable to leave the house. You will feel like you aren’t strong enough or maybe having surgery was a mistake. Or at least that’s how I felt at first.
I’m generally trying to be a much more hopeful and optimistic person and doing that through my recovery has not only been a challenge but also has been very helpful. I do sometimes lose the right mindset, but I have plenty of people that help me back. My recovery has not been at all what I expected nor has it been easy. I’ve felt every single one of those statements on a deep and personal level but I’m here to tell you all that it’s okay.
It’s okay to not be okay. I once cried because I dropped something and couldn’t pick it up. I cried from frustration because I can’t put on my own socks or even get myself a drink. It’s all a part of the journey. You will get through it. I promise! As I mentioned earlier, I am 4 weeks out which is absolutely crazy to me as it has flown by so quick!
Here are some general insights on things I did not expect that may help you:
1. It takes forever to shower and to get ready in the morning
2. Sitting up absolutely sucks for awhile
3. You’re going to want to do things you aren’t supposed to. Just don’t!
4. Just because you’re allowed to do something, it does not mean you should.
5. PT will make you want to cry or actually cry and that’s okay and normal.
6. Your emotions can change rapidly. One second you may feel you can conquer the world and the next you may feel too weak for the recovery.
7. You might get anxious or stressed about PT. I sure have been, but you’re strong enough—remember that!
8. You have more people to help you than you ever thought you would.
9. You will want to throw your crutches multiple times.
10. EVERY BODY HEALS DIFFERENTLY
11. Ice and snow are death traps if you live in the snow zone!
12. Sleeping is a struggle.
13. Patience is key.
Let me remind you. This is MY experience.
I didn’t have my PT evaluation until week 3 and I don’t have my first actual session until tomorrow (just over 4 weeks). My incisions look good except for one that doesn’t want to heal. The Steri strip that was over that incision actually took some skin off a week ago. I still average 4-5 hours of sleep a night. Being at school is so beyond difficult. I can’t be out too long or I’ll get really sore still.
Again, this is MY journey. Some people heal really fast and some don’t and that’s okay—but important to remember. You might get jealous if you see someone earlier in their recovery doing better than you and you start to question EVERYTHING—that’s okay! Keeping hope throughout this journey has helped me tremendously. I don’t regret having this surgery one bit because it has taught me more about myself than anything else that has happened. This will sound extremely cliche... but this recovery has really helped become a new and better person.
Some things I have learned so far: 1. Appreciate what you can and can’t do. 2. So many people love and care for me and I’m extremely blessed 3. Don’t be so stubborn. Let people help you! 4. It’s okay to be emotional and to cry! This isn’t easy! 5. You’re stronger than you could ever imagine.
These are only my top 5 and the list would go on and on. It’s not easy. It’s not supposed to be easy. But remind yourself that you can get through anything with the right mindset. Remember, ”Hope” is your best friend!
Take care my fellow hippies and stay hopeful. -Kiara LeBouton