The word “insanity” does not even begin to describe the past two days (Tuesday and Wednesday). However, last minute appointments and tests being scheduled is not uncommon in my hip journey. Quite frankly, I rather enjoy it since it adds a bit of excitement and spontaneity to all this if you will. There have been last minute meetings in the past, as well as one of the most memorable, a midnight MRI (which I found out about in the afternoon the day of) in the fall of 2010 during which my roommate and a good friend of mine took a road trip from UVM to MA which is about 4 hrs down and 4 back. Its times like these though that make this hip journey worth it and more of an adventure than anything.
Monday morning, I found out that I was meeting with my surgeon on Tuesday afternoon at the end of his day. I can not explain to you the relief in meeting with him; there were so many thoughts on my mind that I wanted to discuss with him, and of course I hoped to make a bit of progress in the forward direction regarding my case. This appointment could not have come with better timing. Since it was UVM’s vacation this week I asked Harley, a good friend of mine since freshman year in college, to come along for a road trip (she had been with me on the midnight MRI too). She gladly agreed and we decided upon meeting at a park and ride on the highway and taking off from there to go down to MA. I think it was the most fun that the two of us have had in a long time.
So at 10: 45 am we were pulling out of the park and ride and on our way down to MA for a 4:30 pm appointment with my surgeon. The whole way down we were laughing and talking about everything that we haven’t had the chance to since we don’t get to hang out all that often without school. It was a really great distraction from my nerves for this appointment. Upon arriving at the hospital we were about an hour early so we went to the cafeteria where Harley did some homework and I read my book. To be honest though, I have no clue what I read; my nerves had crept in and I became my nervous, silent self. Harley kept trying to make me laugh, but it was not exactly working.
For the sake of the length of this, I shall tell you a bit about the appointment itself in a post within the next few days.
The drive down was certainly well worth it even just to make small advances in where we are going, and also to have valid and good discussions on the present situation. Upon leaving, the schedulers had already gone home, so the receptionist said that she would call me the next day once she had scheduled the vascular studies, EMG, and follow up with my surgeon.
The past few days the journey and the destination were important to me. In the long run, it will be my hip journey that matters more than the end.
Harley also got to meet my surgeon and her comment to me afterwards was “He is such an amazing person! So funny, and friendly and seems to be very understanding. Not quite what I was expecting but much better.” Even though she had only briefly been introduced to him, it was interesting that she picked all that up just from our conversation. I was in a bit of a better mood on the way home, and this time Harley drove so that I could write everything down for the day (I keep a pretty detailed journal of everything in my computer). We were once again laughing and singing to the songs on the radio, just enjoying ourselves, although my mind was still wrapped up in everything my surgeon and I had discussed that day. When we reached the park and ride up in northern VT we were both really bummed out that our road trip was over for the day, and although we were exhausted we both just reclined the chairs in the car and sat there, staring outside, talking until we both realized that we still had to finish driving home.
One of the best parts of a road trip is you get to know people so much better because you just talk about everything that you can think of and you find out exactly what the other person is like when you are stuck in a car with nothing better to do than talk. Harley and I had so much fun, and I am extremely grateful to a have a friend like her who is willing to take last minute road trips with me, and not only that but support me and listen to me and not only listen but try to talk through things with me and help me bounce ideas around about what to do and where to go with all the information.
I got home around 11 but did not get to bed till around 3 ish because I was finishing writing my journal out, a friend called in the need of someone to talk to (and I was really gald to talk to her too) and then my hips just did not want to calm down pain wise. I didn’t mind going to bed that late though because I figured that I could sleep in a bit the next day. Well… Think again Emi!!
8 am… my phone rings. I groggily toss an angry hand over to it and flip it over only to see that it is a clinic number. OH SHOOT!! I pick up and say hello, trying to sound as awake as I possibly can. The woman on the other end says to me, “I know that you and your friend just drove back to VT last night, but what is the soonest that you can be down here?” I thought she was kidding. “Um are you serious, like as in today Wednesday?” I asked. Yup today she said, I am able to put all the vascular studies that your surgeon wants on the same day today. OH. MY. GOODNESS. I decided to give myself a bit less than an hour to get dressed, make breakfast and pull together a bag to take with me for the day. Meanwhile I had only slept 5 hours (I had only gotten about 2-3 the night before), and I had not even been home in VT for ten hours yet!! I told her that I could be there by 1. “Okay,” she says to me “I can give you an extra half hour and I will schedule the tests for 1:30. I will call you on your way down and let you know exactly where you need to go and all that but in the mean time get on the road.”
I thanked the woman, hung up, stood there for a moment like a deer in the headlights and for a brief moment asked myself “Em, what the heck are you thinking?! This is insane!!” Once I was done with that temporary shock I went straight to showering quickly throwing on some sort of outfit, pulling together my bag and some fruit for breakfast, then started my car and off I went. Back for another 4 and a half hour trip to MA.
I was there in time for the vascular studies, and had emailed my surgeon in the mean time letting him know what was going on. The woman had also informed me of when the EMG and follow up with my surgeon had been scheduled. Once the vascular studies were done I went across the street to grab a coffee before getting back on the road and was on my way back up to VT by 6:30 pm. Again I got home around 11 but by this time I don’t think I would have been able to tell the difference between a bed and the floor. I was beyond exhausted.
The best part of road trip number two: there was a total of 8 people who all asked me “What the heck happened to you, was it a skiing accident?!” EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM, equated my injury and presence on crutches to a ski accident. What were the odds of that? Then when I said, no actually I had hip surgery for a condition I was born with, the eyes bugged out of their heads and more questions followed.
Today (Thursday) I didn’t wake up till about noon time and I am still exhausted. Tuesday and Wednesday were two days full of a lot of driving, a heck of a lot of rough information, and had left me physically and mentally just done for the week. I have completely lost track of the days for the week after all of this.My hips by the end of yesterday, were screaming, and the pain continues to be very troublesome today.
Upcoming Events in Emi’s Hip Journey:
March 6th: Surgeon meeting (done)
March 7th: Vascular studies (done)
March 29th: MRI of thoracic spine, and meeting with neurologist
April 3rd: Pre- Ops
April 5th: EMG of left and right leg and meeting with surgeon
April 24th: Surgery- Right anteverted/ reverse PAO
Days Till Surgery: 47
Surgery : April 24th 2012