Time for an update. It has been a little over 6 weeks since my last visit to the Dr.. I used the boot for two weeks like he recommended, but it was like walking on the deck of a ship in a heavy storm. Even with a lifted left shoe I was still 1 1/2 inches taller on the right side.
At he end of the two weeks I was ready to try a real shoe for the first time in 14 weeks. What a bundle of mixed emotions and feelings. Freedom from a cast, afraid of what might happen, will the ankle and the rod hold, is it going to hurt on and on. The final thing was all was well and I took the first few steps, and there began a new experience.
Learning to walk again, every step brings a new sensation. There is pain, shooting from many different places, from toes to back to hips to knees. Each spot has it's special reason for hurting. The biggest factor was that I hadn't walked in 3 1/2 months and the body was trying to cope. In addition I was wearing a new style of shoe. I have to wear a rocker style shoe in order to compensate for the lack of movement in my ankle. That alone creates it's own set of challenges.
Dr. Feinblatt recommended I get MBT brand shoes, as these where the first to come up with the rocker sole design. Skeechers would lead you to believe they did it first but no. Matt and Alyson took me to the local mall ( Pam was in Indiana at the time), to try on these fancy shoes. The difference was night and day from the cheaper ones I was wearing, plus the new shoes matched. The pair of old ones I had been wearing the left for 8 weeks plus and the right was brand new. Bad idea. Thank God they where having a fantastic sale. $300 instead of $700 for 3 pairs of shoes. I didn't spend that much on my first car. The kids said it was just me getting old. Heck I remember buying Converse Allstars for $6.99 and thinking I was getting robbed.
Well now I'm walking and doing OK. A little clumsy, but getting through the days, and the feeling of freedom is fantastic.Although no stairs yet as they present their own unique challenges.
It's been a couple to three weeks and I'm sitting at home having a moment because I still feel to dependent on everyone to do anything. I had driven the golf cart around the apartments and a few things like that but still felt a little trapped.
It was a dreary misty afternoon and I said to my self "Why not?" I put on my coat, grabbed my keys and headed out to my truck. The Dr. said I would know if I could drive or not, but I had to give it a shot. I headed to the neighborhood behind us where they are building some new houses. A rainy afternoon in a construction site, nobody would be around so the worst I could do was get stuck in an empty lot, and I had my cell. I gingerly drove to the neighborhood and all went OK. Putting around the block testing my foot and ankle all seemed OK so I thought "What the heck you gotta test it" So I got up to about 40 and slammed on the brakes, weeellllll.........
If you want to know what I experienced here's what you do. Take off your shoe and sock, glue a carpet tack strip to your brake pedal. Now get the car up to 40 and slam on the brakes. You guessed it, a real unique sensation of pain, not bad but something you don't want to do over and over. Anyway with a little practice and trial and error on foot placement I got it down.
I don't drive a lot but am doing more everyday. I go back to see Dr. Fienblatt in mid January. We will see what happens then. It will be just past the original 200 day goal (208 actually) I set for my self and just 6 months since surgery, the least amount of time he predicted for recovery. I'm sure I won't be 100% but I should have a good idea as to when I might see that mark.
Anyway, if you see a large Dodge truck coming up behind you, you might want to brace yourself it could be me.