I’ve been out of commission for a while, recovering from bone amputation and surgical insertion of a prosthetic, rebuilding bone into my new improved titanium hip. Before surgery, I’d often joke about becoming bionic. I assure you I felt anything BUT bionic as I recovered.
Moving after hip surgery is weird, and full of revelations. The biggest difference about moving around after getting a new hip is that you have to be SO intentional. There are things that you cannot do because you can dislocate your new joint …and sometimes dislocation requires a whole other surgery to reset it. So you have to be intentional and think about your movement, plan every step, and be careful with yourself.
For example, one morning I was washing my face and I reached into the shower to get the soap, but the soap was not where it usually is, it was farther into the shower. In order to get the soap, I’d have to step into the shower, but I had not been planning on stepping into the shower I had planned on leaning in, grabbing the soap, and leaning out. In the first six weeks post-surgery, there are very strict movement precautions for stepping from one surface to another after a hip replacement. I could not just step in with either of my feet, because my surgical leg wasn’t supposed to do that yet. I had to stop and actually think about the best way to relocate my feet from where they were to where they would need to be before I would even be able to step into the shower to grab the soap.
Having to plan out something that I had not given a second thought a month prior to surgery got me thinking about those of us who have experienced trauma or are doing heavy work on ourselves. Especially with regards to our hearts, our emotional responses, our souls. I realized that the same sort of movement precautions might apply as we step through life, while rebuilding our selves – more intention, more thought to our next step, putting our strongest side forward first, supporting that which we are rebuilding, protecting our new selves from the world as we move through our interactions gently, purposefully, intentionally.
If you, too, are doing emotional, mental, and spiritual heavy lifting, remember that you are rebuilding. You are under construction. This, too, shall change, but during the change, like a caterpillar in a chrysalis, you must be careful with you. Use caution, be gentle with yourself, you are under construction.