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Week 15 Post-Surgical Update: Aches, Balance and Progress

It’s been exciting to wear two shoes again, building an additional hour each day. I’m slow because my brain really needs to think about walking. I wonder what it will be like to just walk again without being so aware of each step and the balance it requires.

My PT exercises are challenging me to balance for 30 seconds at a time on my new foot. This is extremely odd for my brain to handle because the lifetime deformity of this foot never allowed me to balance very well. Tree pose in yoga has always been a moment of sadness followed by loving acceptance. Now that I’m assured it is possible, it’s still hard to get my head around it. I keep one fingernail on a stable surface, but surely that isn’t holding me up! Yesterday my therapist gave me yet another challenge – to do my one footed balance while standing on a foam pad. Yikes, suddenly I’m wobbling all over the place and engaging all those tendons in my ankle in new ways. I see the wisdom of it and it is aching like crazy when I’ve completed my repetitions.

Here at home, I proudly accomplish significant bits of yard work and begin to take longer walks too. Moving from out of the boot was initially no big deal, but after a few days I realize that the side-to-side movements needed to navigate uneven surfaces really do take their toll. The consequence is not swelling as I might have expected, but a deep achiness where there used to be numbness on the outside of my foot. Oh yes, my big toe is also moving at last. I end most days with the boot back on because my foot and ankle are talking to me.

Over many decades I have learned that there is a clear difference between pain and muscle aches. I’ve been very fortunate to have ZERO pain ever since day 3. Yes, I have had swelling and throbbing, but not what I know to be pain. Pain to me is a very overbearing alert that means “danger” or “stop”. Aches on the other hand mean I did something new or challenging and my body knows it. This week has been filled with new challenges. I remind myself that aches mean progress.

The most exciting development is that I am able to once again do all 5 of the Five Tibetan Exercises.

Work life is getting brisk again. I am very excited about the upcoming Lakeside women’s retreat, hosting Seneca Medicine woman Gaisheda Kheawok, attending and speaking at the ACEP Conference In San Antonio and getting professional CE credits for my June EFT Level 1 and 2 Workshops.

I will be putting away my handicapped placard and finding myself a cool walking stick as I honor the excitement of balance, achiness and new adventures.



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