July 29, 2005

The Sling: Day Two

Today was all about adapting and figuring things out. Exactly how far can I push the arm to give me some mobility before that snap of pain lets me know "too far"? How do I deal with a head of hair by myself? Which kinds of shirts work best with a sling wrapped around my neck?

Lessons learned:

1. Don't jostle me. Out in public, I find myself feeling a great deal of fear of someone bumping against my arm. That's when I'm glad that the sling isn't transparent. But I know it's only a matter of time. People are so oblivious so much of the time, and add to that how half the population can't seem to go anywhere without a cell phone pressed up against their ear, and eventually it's going to happen. And I'm going to scream. Loudly. Not because I want to, but because I won't be able to help it; it just hurts that much. I bumped my arm against the wall of the shower this morning and I involuntarily let out a scream that hurt my own eardrums.

Saturday and Sunday I'm off to attend the San Jose Grand Prix, so we'll see how it goes in an actual crowd. Please think nice thoughts about invisible force fields and a sudden epidemic of mental awareness on the part of my fellow citizens.

2. Eating is a chore. Goodness knows I enjoy food and it's rare that I don't look forward to a meal, but it's difficult to find things that are easy for me to eat when eating out. Sandwiches seem like an obvious choice, but pick it up one-handed and a lot of the filling falls out. And you can only have so many sandwiches. If I pick something that requires cutting, I'm going to be the last one at the table because it's a slooooow process. The upside is that eating slower = eating less and that's generally a good thing.

3. Hand over the pain meds every 4-6 hours and no one gets hurt. I've always been an Advil girl because it's the most effective at dealing with my frequent headaches. (Well, second-most effective, but Orudis KT has become so difficult for me to find that I was using it for only the worst ones 'til I ran out.) But now I worship at the altar of Tylenol. I take the Vicodin (which, as you probably know, has the same base ingredient as Tylenol) only at night because it makes me so sleepy and I have get myself around during the day, and the "regular" Extra Strength pills seem to do the trick the rest of the time, so long as I take them on schedule. I'd become a fan of the Rapid Relief kind but, well, I ran out of those, too.

So be nice to the next person you see strapped into a sling, and don't get between him/her and the drugstore, okay?