PAO life is interesting in many ways. Suddenly, my life as I knew it, was suspended and I had to drastically adapt even the simplest of tasks, such as carrying a cup of coffee (very carefully in my walker basket, and not to fill it too full to avoid spillage, which requires more trips with the walker for refills). Friends schedule visits via my meal train, which is the highlight of my day. Otherwise, a suspended life is a lonely life; and in a way, I have gotten used to the loneliness.
Tomorrow I will be 7 weeks post-op, but let me back up a bit:
I am a self-employed jewelry artist. I make my living my selling my jewelry on my Etsy store, one retail account and most importantly, doing art shows and local Farmer’s Markets every weekend from Memorial Day to the second week in December. I have been pretty good about allowing myself time off work to heal from my LPAO which was April 8. I knew in the back of my head that I had enough savings to live on until the end of May. What day is it as I write this? You got it….which was the decision to do a two-day art show in Denver this Memorial Day weekend. For months before, I stressed and anticipated this weekend. I lost many a night’s sleep over this event. I was very nervous to work 13-hour days while on crutches, especially since setting up, working and breaking down a display complete with a 10×10 pop-up tent, four 4-ft. tables, 65 lb. sandbags (x4) for the tent and countless tiny items of jewelry is no easy task. BUT, I had no choice: I was out of money and had to get back to work, even if I am on crutches with restrictions (no active hip flexion, toe touch only, no bending or lifting of heavy items. Oh yeah, I still can’t drive!).
Regardless of when life gets suspended due to a major surgery such as a PAO, life goes on. People will come and go on their own adventures, bills still need to be paid, kids graduate from high school, people run the Bolder Boulder 10K, etc….maybe I am ready not to be lonely anymore: I cannot wait until I am strong and healthy again to resume life as I know it.
In the meantime, my art show Saturday and Sunday was a signal to slowly ease out of this solo suspended state. I had to have help and constant companionship as I was not even able to easily move about (I had pottery being sold right next to me so to shimmy in between my table and her booth could have been potentially disasterous to her, and very costly to me!) Fortunately, Shawn was with me every step of the way and was a tremendous help. He even tolerated my OCD-behavior of my earring display (“Have to make sure all the earrings are hanging perfectly straight!”).
In short, just shy of 7 weeks post-op, we made it work and the show was a big success. Folks in Denver were very considerate of me being on crutches (far better than my experiences in Boulder). I had great sales, despite a tornado warning and a severe thunderstorm. I was in good spirits and was happy to see a handful of friends who came to see me. Physically, I feel like I had been hit by a truck, but alas…no hip pain! Just muscle soreness, which is something I can handle.
Its time: life goes on, and its time to slowly come out of my cocoon of hard-core recovery and try to establish a sense of normalcy once again. Baby steps…ONWARD!