Knee blog: a little more clarity

Well, the PT came over today. Took awhile to make progress, due to not having a session over the weekend, but with a lot of sweat and pain we made it to 115 degrees of flexion while still maintaining full extension.  Got SOME answers--basically, that everyone heals at their own rate. Some folks at this point are still on Oxys along with Norco at this point; a minority are toughing it out with Extra Strength or Arthritis Formula Tylenol (actually, generic, since brand name Tylenol's been withdrawn from sale for awhile); the average seems to be some degree of opioid--at least prior to a PT session--for 6 weeks.  I am lucky in that the pain doesn't keep me awake, nor does it awaken me.  So we've decided that 1 Norco 2 (10 mg) every 5 hours should be okay; if it doesn't take enough edge off the pain, I can add one acetaminophen (preferably 325mg, which is what is in a Norco 1 or 2, but nobody seems to be carrying anything but 500-650mg., non-splittable; the 650s are sustained release designed to be taken 2 twice a day) every 5-6 hours or one 650 on awakening and one on retiring.  No Aleve, Voltaren gel or Flector patches yet--not till the Coumadin is officially out of my system on July 23. And that's when I do my first outpatient PT session at ATI--which'll be more challenging. They have a shuttle to pick me up, though--and if its steps are too steep they'll reimburse me for taxis. 

I am noticing that as my right knee gets stronger I notice the left one more--I'm almost tempted now to alternate stairs going up as long as I have a rail and cane.  My PT says it's perfectly fine to walk around the house on a single level without the cane as long as I keep my gait normal; a daily outdoor walk (about .1-.2 mi roundtrip, which is what I did yesterday) is okay so long as I use a cane or a Rollator, and don't attempt to cross a major street--at the speed I can comfortably walk, I'd never make it across safely before the light changes.  And Bob says "frequent short walks" means get up and go to the bathroom, answer the phone, go to the kitchen to get water, make coffee or cook every hour or so.  The PT says I can climb stairs "as tolerated." So today, after my luxury shopping excursion to Tar-zhay (Carrie drove), which required stairs out of and back into the house but afforded me the luxury of using a shopping cart as a giant walker, I will have Bob schlep my pillows and blanket back upstairs so we can sleep together.  (Just sleep--no you-know-what till 6 weeks out. Imagine--I can drive AND cavort in the back seat on the same target date).  We both miss cuddling--but we're both gonna have to break out the earplugs again. 

One piece of sad news: Funny Bunny, the official rabbit of the 800 block of N. Laramie, was killed by a hit-and-run driver yesterday.  She was the closest thing Carrie, my assistant, had to a pet--in fact, she was so docile and people-friendly she had to have been a house pet before her outdoor life.  Everyone on the block made sure to grow a little lettuce or parsley for her.  She had been putting on some weight; one neighbor found she'd started making a nest for an anticipated litter.  So it's bad enough she was killed--but so were her babies.  Whoever hit her and kept going, I hope you don't sleep well for a LONG time.  I'll swear under my breath now when I see a squirrel nibbling my tarragon or eyeing the blossoms on my tomato plants, but swearing's as much as I'll do.  We have rabbits--but they don't seem to care about my herb garden. (I draw the line at cockroaches though--PETA would be disgusted by my attitude but I am more disgusted by roaches).

I made a courageous and for me painful decision today: I bought two more pair of shorts.  My scar no longer scares little kids (although my thighs still might), but it looks like we're in for a VERY hot summer. (100 again tomorrow--perfect day for indoor exercise).  Treated myself to a small iced light skim mocha--saved the cup in the freezer since ice is at a premium. My icemaker threw a hissy last night, in mid-party, and I've been rationing the few cubes I had put in a plastic bag.  For the first time in years, I am filling ice trays.  (So much with using my Polarcare cryo-cuff machine--I'm sticking with the gel packs). 

Yesterday, Gordy & Coco threw a BBQ party.  Coco graciously walked to Metropolis (the quarter-mile walk might have been doable but for having to cross Broadway) and bought me half a pound of Red Line blend.  Ah, the joy of pulling a good (though not "God") shot, as well as playing barista for guests once again! This morning I toasted some tomato foccaccia; tonight I made myself a (non-flattened) Panino Caprese: griddled half a mini-sesame baguette, then filled it with two thick slices of heirloom tomato, about an ounce of fresh mozzarella, basil leaves from my garden, a flick of fleur de sel from the grinder, and my very best olive oil and balsamico.  Washed it down with homemade seltzer.  I miss wine--but only really good wine. Which I'll be able to taste at the next B'way Cellars Winemaker Dinner a week from Wed.  (Still have a shrunken stomach--so I'll have to apologize for neither cleaning my plates nor draining my glasses).

Off to make that one last skinny latte.

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