Wednesday, December 15, 2004

No bandages. Some pain.

               Monday 12/13/04 -- Follow-up hospital visit


Well, the bandages are off.  And now I'm in pain.  I guess it's to be expected.  I can't rely on pain meds forever.  At some point, the pain has to make itself known.  Still, I asked for stronger meds so I can rest peacefully.  A little pain is okay.  Agony is unnecessary.

I'm slowly getting back to a regular schedule.  All in good time.  I'm not rushing this process.  Not working yet.  I can't hold Hunny's leash alone.  There's no way I could handle even the most well-behaved group of dogs.  Lifting is out of the question.  At least for a couple of more days.  I'm eating more solid foods.  It's not the most comfortable chew but it's better than sucking oatmeal through a straw.  I still can't open my jaw fully.  Well, I guess I *can* but given the pain I was in earlier, I'm thinking no.

It's amazing the things I'm learning about myself, life and the world around me, just from this one experience.  I understand now why the jaw is the strongest muscle in the body.  It's used more than I ever would've known.  Talking, laughing, smiling, yawning (ouch) and chewing, are just some of the very basics.  Lifting, showering, stretching, walking and of course singing, are all things that affect my jaw.  I couldn't sing softly or hum to most of the music I heard today.  Not just because of the limited range of jaw motion.  It takes strength in the jaw muscles to get the vocal chords rolling.  Sitting up in bed takes a lot of neck muscle.  I have to strategically roll over and use my hands to support and lift my head before I sit up.

It gets better as each day passes.  It's not as dramatic as it may sound.  I'm just noticing all the little things that require use of these muscles on a regular basis.  It gives me a whole new appreciation for this body that works so hard.


readmereadyou said...

You're looking great. I can empathize with your pain because I do occasionally get TMJ. I would imagine what you are feeling is a lot worse. Hope you feel better soon.


kathlyna22 said...

looking good lady...looking good!
and I don't know what you are talking about....drug me up until the cows come home!
I'm a wuss!

andreakingme said...

I guess I shouldn't tell the one and only joke I can remember ... it might make you laugh too hard.

When I got my knee surgeries, all of the nurses (most of 'em were men, too!) told me NOT to suffer there in silence, that there was no need for that, and that that's what the drugs were for. Besides, keeping the pain at bay keeps you feeling good and optimistic during recovery ... and that's what you need to feel.

It IS amazing what our bodies are capable of doing. A week ago, I discovered what a simple joy it is just being able to sit somewhere without feeling like I had to vomit. And of course last year, I had to have help to the loo after my knee surgeries. It took me minutes just to move down the hall at home. Ken and Oogie used to monitor my progress with grins on their faces.

judithheartsong said...

I am thinking of you and sending lots of hugs. judi

alphawoman1 said...

Your entry reminds me of when I had broken my jaw.  What a shock to loose that essential part of your being!  Talking was the!

deabvt said...

Aww, I`m glad you`re doing well, er, the best that can be expected.
Take your time!
Next up, Hunny!

babyshark28 said...

Again....great pictures!

how nice of you to share this part of your journey with us.   And your right, I had no idea how many we used in our neck, jaw, shoulders, head.  Not until you described it....I mean ya know.  But, you just don't think about it.

glad the operation was such a success, what a relief that it's over!!  

diannevan said...

so, you KNOW that yawning is a painful thing, yet you wrote the word "yawning" which means that you are guaranteed to yawn within 5 seconds of seeing the word yawn.  You bozo!!  BTW, I just made sure to type yawn four (whoops, now it is five) times.  Did you yawn five times, too?  I'm evil, I tell ya!

ryanagi said...

Aye you are bringing back such memories of my abdominal surgery. All these muscles in our never DO realize what muscles you use to do various things until you don't have the use of those muscles for a while. Ouch! Take it easy and I ditto the comment about being pain free and getting what ever meds you need to get there.

yakima127 said...

You are so strong!  I am so glad you finally did this, and are getting through it...yeah for you!  And yeah for pain meds (if they don't make you vomit, that is...youch!)  Take care!  JAE

mallory4284 said...

Ouch. Just those pictures look a bit painful. (except for the big one....happy beats the pain in that one...) Hope you're feeling better with less pain now though! Have a great weekend!!

-- Mallory :)

aims814 said...

Yes, hearing this, gives me a whole new appreciation too. The good thing is, it's outta there, and it is now time to heal and move forward.

Love you

luckyaugustgirl said...

Glad you made it through ok, Im sure i wasnt the only one who was slightly worried. You look great hon, hardly any swelling (or so it looks like) and in that bigger picture, it looks like codeine is your BEST FRIEND! Hope you heal up soon! :) ~ Sarah

rgossett4195 said...

It is amazing when you have surgery.  I had a lump removed in my neck and one in my never realize how one little muscle can effect your daily life.  You're looking good!  Get better! and take your time...Roseg

txsguinan said...

"I can't rely on pain meds forever..." WHAT??!!  ;( I maintain that you look suspiciously chipper during this bandage-ripping ceremony... ;)

I'm curious ~ what does your yoga teacher say about all of this?  She must have some help to offer, if only a scented  candle and sachet pillow ... :)

krobbie67 said...

You're such a trooper! Look at that great smile. I would have been snarling and swatting anyone with a camera for even thinking of taking pictures.
:-) ---Robbie