One of the hardest struggles I have in life is that of depending on others for things that I can do on my own. At an early age I realized that in order to survive and get where I needed to go, I had to be willing to work hard and not allow the hardships in life to control me. Regardless of my past, it seems to have a way of re-entering my life when I need it to be reminded of where I’ve been to be shown how far I have traveled.
Over the past week I have had to depend on my husband for things for which I normally take for granted. Nothing major, just the decision to get some repair work done to my prominent arm in order to reduce (hopefully rid) me from pain. Yet with this decision, I was confident that I would easily be able to overcome the obstacles I would face.
I clearly heard the physician tell me it would be “at least” two weeks, yet up to six to have most of my function back. But, to have full function would take longer. Albeit, even on the day of the procedure, I was confidently stating (in question form to my surgeon, as well as in front of my husband) that I would be able to cross-stitch, hand-sew, type, etc. within a few days. With a smile, and a hidden chuckle, he told me I “might” be able to type if I adjusted the laptop, etc. He would not guarantee that I would be able to do all that I anticipated being able to do.
I prepared for this challenge, by having the taxes completed, bills paid, along with having some meals prepared in advance to make things easy, as well as having house chores done. I was ready to rest for a day or two, enjoy some hand stitch crafting, read, and more. Can you tell I am a planner? J
Okay, I knew I would need to take it easy so that I could heal correctly. And, I am one that will follow the “rules”. Yet, if I am not told I will not be able to do something, I have a tendency to challenge myself. Not out of rebellion, but rather independence (although, if you ask my husband he will tell you I have a tendency to stretch my limits of independence).
Over the past week, regardless of my desire to do simple tasks, I quickly discovered the challenge I faced. Brushing my teeth was difficult while flossing was a task that would have to wait until I had more use of my arm. Showering and washing my hair required adjustments in order to accomplish the task one handed. Eating was comical. And if I was to even think about using my right arm, all I had to do was take it out of the sling and realize that my brain was unable to communicate function.
I quickly gave up the notion that I would be able to prepare meals, enjoy creative moments, or have energy beyond fifteen minutes or more. In order to be productive in any capacity, it would require the use of both hands and strength of both arms. I was limited to sleeping, reading, watching TV or DVD’s, some typing, and more sleeping.
I’m only one week post-op, but I’m doing well. I’ve accepted the challenge to restrain from pushing myself beyond my limits (okay, recovery limits), appreciating what exercise I am able to do, and working on my writing, while anxiously waiting to put thread to fabric.
Even a week post-op, I still use my left hand to move my right arm to where I want it to be, due to my muscles ignoring my desire for them to move. Despite the challenge, frustration and tears, I am able to appreciate a husband of patience, and the ability to laugh at myself when I do get frustrated. Although I have gained much wisdom over the years, patience for myself is still limited, my rebellious nature is still intact, while learning to accept being able to depend on someone who cares deeply for me. With the wisdom I have gained in my life, God continues to allow things to happen in order for me to appreciate how much I have grown as well as visibly see how far I have left to travel.
“You cannot see faith, but you can see the footprints of the faithful. We must leave behind “faithful footprints” for others to follow.” ~ Dr. Dennis Anderson ~