Monday, February 1, 2016

Not taking walking for granted

This is probably a pretty boring video for you. Let me explain why I posted it.

When I got my osteoarthritis diagnosis in July, I was in a lot of pain every day. I was trying to come to terms with a degenerative condition. I was trying to wrap my head having the word disabled applied to me. I was wondering how long it'd be before I needed hip replacement surgery. I was fitted for a cane & learned how to use it. I struggled with managing a toddler, a five-year-old, my cane & carrying anything like a bag of groceries. I bought a big bottle of Tylenol for Arthritis at Costco & tried to get used to taking it preventatively, before I was going to be walking or standing a lot.

While I haven't been good about doing the physiotherapy exercises I was given, I did do one thing. I followed my doctor's advice to try to lose weight. Besides the fact that my diet wasn't as healthy as it could have been, it's basic physics: losing weight means less force exerted on my hip joint & thus, less pain. 

Hiking (!!) at Lighthouse Park, for the first time in YEARS
Five months later, I'm down 30 pounds. I rarely take Tylenol. I haven't used my cane more than once in the past two months. I often walk a few blocks to run errands & I have started going on long walks & even hikes again (with my Nordic poles).

I know there's a limit to how much better my hip will get--the damage to the cartilage can't be reversed--but I have a little more hope that I'll be able to chase my kids around while they're still little & maybe I won't be facing disability & then major surgery before they even get through elementary school. 

I also know that I won't really take walking for granted again. So don't be terribly surprised if you see more videos or photos of me just walking or hiking in my Instagram feed.

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