Knifeless in Southwest Ohio
It’s been exactly 7 days since the surgery and I must first continue to thank all of you for your continued support. I have gotten probably close to 50 or so e-mails in the last week and I’m still getting people to bring in food and come over to cut chicken and get pizzas out of ovens. I’m learning everyday of new things that I can’t do nearly as well with one arm stuck to my stomach. See, I know that my football playing, breakdancing and puppeteering days are on hold until sometime in 2008, but there are lots of activities I didn’t realize would be so difficult until I tried them recently. And so I have come up with a top ten list of these activities I have realized are very very biased toward two-handed people.
10. Driving. I drive a stick shift. I actually thought this would be a lot harder, but I forgot how incredibly awesome I am. The trick is to shift on the straightaways and try not to do anything stupid. I learned early on when trying to text message and steer and shift all at the same time. When I realized that was too many things to do at once with one arm, I quickly surmised which was the most important and was able to get from A to B unscathed. So it turns out driving isn’t all that difficult, but if you see my car, you may just want to run inland anyway. And I mean inland. The sidewalk may not be safe enough depending on if I’m trying to download ringtones or not. Run towards a building. That should be good enough. I hope.
9. Typing. I guess I kinda knew that this wouldn’t be easy, but I’m cheating. I can peak my right hand out and hit a decent radius of keys around the j and k keys. And I think I’m allowed to do that. I’ll find out Wednesday if I was supposed to have been doing this.
8. Shorts. Ever try buttoning shorts with one hand? It’s real damn difficult. Much like unhooking a rear clip bra with one hand, from what I remember. Only try doing it with your non-dominant hand. The zipper isn’t even really that easy to zip up. Elastic shorts are the way to go.
7. Arm pit sweat. It gets pretty rank under there. I have decided to combat this issue with the use of spray deodorant. However, I won’t lie and say that there are times that I don’t just spray febreeze all over myself and hope that helps. Showering is tough because I have to change band-aids and I have to wash my hair with one hand, etc. so I apologize ahead of time for my possible stench.
6. Footwear. I can’t tie my shoes anymore and so I’m confined to use either my flip flops or my stupid, ugly, not-as-comfy-as-they-say-they-are crocs. Obviously, flip flops are not the most professional shoes to wear but I can’t tie my friggin shoes! I’m just waiting for the first person to tell me to put on a pair of sneakers and I’m going to shove my croc so far up their ass, they’ll be crapping little alligators.
5. Wiping my butt. Sorry to get graphic, but this is not easily done with my left hand. I will refrain from any further discussion on this topic.
4. Tripping. And no, not the kind associated with crystal meth. I mean falling. And I haven’t actually done this yet and I’m really not looking forward to the first time I do. Especially if I’m carrying something. I know I’ll be carrying a lemonade and stumble on my stupid oversized crocs and I’ll have to make a decision whether or not to throw my lemonade and try to catch myself with my only functional arm, getting myself all sticky and risking walking around armless for the next month or keep my lemonade and try to roll over my right shoulder and never be able to use it again or maybe even die. So I’m not looking forward to that.
3. Eating a taco. I was trying to figure out what food to eat that would be easiest. Honestly, I thought taco bell would be one of the easiest things to eat. Well, it turns out you use two hands a lot more often than you think. Or I least I do. And it’s just impossible to keep the beef in the chalupa. Of course, once I accepted that I was just going to pick the escaped meat and shredded lettuce off the wrapper and shove it in my mouth, I was fine. But it wasn’t easy.
2. Shaving. I’d almost sooner let an ex-girlfriend with a grudge around my face with a razor than to try to trust my left hand again. I don’t even think I had the razor pointed the right way at one point. I’ve taken the approach of just not shaving much of at all for the next three weeks. The same goes for brushing my teeth.
1. Sleeping. This absolutely sucks. I am actually not experiencing that much pain at all but I can’t get comfortable and so I can’t sleep. I get a lot more irritable because of this. I’ve been taking my pain pills hoping that they’d act as sleeping pills. I realize this is stupid, but I do it anyway. Those people that know me well enough know that I didn’t wake up at 8 in the morning to send this e-mail. This is the one thing I didn’t see coming that seems to make it much worse than my Achilles surgery recovery. And the other 31 years that I didn’t have surgery.
There you go. A little insight into some of the less known difficulties associated with rotator cuff surgery. I refrained from including one slightly more lude thing that is also difficult with one’s dominant arm in a sling. The hint is that it is sommonly said that if one tries this with their non-dominant hand that it feels like someone else. While that is true, it is someone very uncoordinated. Now I’m gonna go try to rest for a couple hours before work.