I can see clearly now the pain is gone

Dec 14, 2011 | On Being Positive

Blog Categories

Blog Archive

About Me

Lynne Tapper

I am a lifelong endurance athlete with the dual goal of training and racing until my bones turn to dust and sharing that passion with as many people as possible.

At my four-week post-op appointment, the plastic surgeon told us that patients notice significant improvement at six weeks and then again at 12 weeks.

Now that I’m at six weeks, I thought I’d share some observations about how I’m doing.

What surgery?
There are times during the day when I’m feeling so “normal” that I forget I had major surgery barely six weeks ago. For example, I went for a four-mile run on Monday.  Not only was it great to be out running, but looking back, I wasn’t even thinking about this being a “post-surgical” run. I was blissfully unaware of any differences.

What not to wear?
This past weekend I went shopping with friends.  Interestingly, I found myself drawn towards clothes that accentuated my new physique.  I tried on tighter fitting dresses and tops that were more revealing (more revealing for me as I’m a very conservative dresser). I ended up purchasing two dresses that threw Leland for a loop.  The next test will be if I actually wear them. But, having them in my closet is the first step.

Sleep, perchance to dream
For the first few weeks after the surgery, getting into a comfortable sleeping position was challenging.  Even though I was tired, I didn’t look forward to getting into bed.  I’m a side sleeper and that was proving to be a painful position.  I am now happy to report that I can sleep on my side for the whole night. Small victories!

Full Body Stretching
After a run or a cycling workout, I always spend a few minutes stretching.  One of my favorite stretches is a lying down spinal twist.  I remember trying this out only a week or two post-ops and I was not able to get into the full position. My upper body and shoulders wouldn’t allow my torso to twist, mostly due to the discomfort as I was rotating my hips.  This past week, I found that I was easily able to get into that position with no pain.

Full Speed Ahead?
There are times when I’m amazed with how well I’m doing after six weeks.  I am eager to get back to doing all that I love like swimming, biking, running, core training, and even some yoga.  But, I’m finding myself still in shock about all that has happened and how quickly I have recovered.  I spent nearly a year planning this surgery down to the tiniest details.  Now that I’m on the other side, I sometimes have to remind myself that it happened.  I know that is a good thing and I’m not complaining.  But it was such a huge deal for me and my immediate family that I don’t want to minimize it.

In a way, it’s as if the process is ending with a very quiet whimper and not the same finality that I am used to with my races.  There is no horn that blows or a finish line to cross that says, “you’ve completed your surgery and rehab!”  When I was in high school and did something that I thought was noteworthy, a common put-down was “Great, you want a medal or a chest to pin it on?”  Well, now that I have the latter, I would appreciate the former.  But, there isn’t a medal, just the slow, steady rhythm of life and that sounds good to me.


Related Posts

Iron Man Triathlon. Done.

Iron Man Triathlon. Done.

You know what they say, "When one blog closes, another blog opens." Wait, I think that's about windows, but anyway, you get the point. In August 2014, I completed my first IronMan Triathlon. I kept...

read more