Thursday, February 19, 2009
Part 2-Recovery at home
We got home from the hospital comfortably by Sunday afternoon. I was looking forward to being able to really get some much needed rest in my own bed. John, of course, was a great nurse taking care of my every need. With the splint on my left arm I was not able to easily shower or dress without his help. He took care of my neck incision every morning and evening. He had my breakfast and lunch prepared or came back to help with lunch if he could. I've had so much going on in my mouth with stitches and swelling that only liquid or creamy things have been part of my diet so far. Can't handle anything with even small chunks or texture quite yet. I was looking forward to going back for my follow-up on Monday, the 16th. I was hoping the splint would come off and my doctor would shed more light on the swelling in my mouth. He had told us when we left the hospital that it would take 6 weeks for it to completely go down. He had said the swelling should be down 50% from what it was till I came back for the follow-up. I wasn't so sure it had gotten down that much when we went back. He did remove the splint, plus staples from an incision that went from my wrist where the flap was removed to my elbow. I wasn't expecting that. I had no idea the extent this surgery took to make sure the flap in my mouth would have the veins and arteries needed to make it work properly. He and the nurses were quite pleased with my progress and all seemed according to plan though it is such an adjustment for me. He told me before I left his office that it might be 8 weeks for the area to completely heal to a normal state. I'll see him again in 4 weeks. The stitches and swelling in my mouth not only limits my ability to eat and drink but also to talk. That would be a huge prayer request...that my mouth will quickly heal, and I would be able to eat more easily. It is great to be able to use my left arm now. The wrist is still quite touchy and my arm is recovering from soreness I'm sure because of the incision that had to be made. I was able to blow dry my hair today on my own for the first time...and I'm able to type using both hands now. This has to be the most challenging recovery I've ever had from surgery. It's actually like having 3 individual major surgeries to get over. It's just going to be more time intensive. Cannot wait for 8 weeks to be here so I can hopefully see great improvement. Thank you for your many thoughts and prayers during all of this time.