Is surgery the easy way out?
After feeling slowly better each day, today I woke up and absolutely did NOT. I'm feeling light-headed, dizzy, and weak, which was especially disappointing to my dog Moses who wanted to go to the park today and now will not be going. (He is currently protesting this change to his normal routine by sitting glumly in the living room while I'm in the bedroom. Since he usually has no respect for my personal space and prefers to be firmly attached to me at all times, this is basically a declaration of war.)
I know this is to be expected, and shouldn't be at all surprising considering I'm existing on nothing but broth, protein shakes, and Vitamin Water Zero right now. And duh, because I just went through major surgery 5 days ago. But I am not the most patient of people, as literally anyone who knows me can tell you, so all this lying around waiting for my body to feel normal again is more painful than the soreness and aches of the actual healing process itself.
I'm also an extravert, so sitting alone in my apartment for this many days on end is torture. I have a few friends' birthday parties this weekend, and it is taking everything in me not to go. I know my body is so far from being ready to go out, not to mention I probably wouldn't be the most fun party guest right now since I'd have to stay sitting down and couldn't eat or drink anything besides water (unless they've started serving sugar-free pudding at parties these days and no one told me?) But oh, to be celebrating friends, experiencing life beyond my apartment! Sure, it's only been a week since the last time I went out (the Saturday night before surgery) but it seems so far away now!
Ugh, I hate listening to my body but I know that's what I need to be doing. And it doesn't help this feeling that I've talked about in previous posts of how my body is somehow separate from the rest of me. My mind is clear and I'm feeling pretty good emotionally, but once again my body is the thing holding me back. I hate how needy and demanding it is. I know it's going to get easier and I shouldn't be expecting to be 100% so soon after surgery, but it's still frustrating.
That being said, I have a lot to be thankful for - first, that the surgery went well, and that my insurance covered nearly 100% (I'll just be responsible for my coinsurance, which thanks to the fantastic insurance coverage I have at L'Oreal, isn't too crazy.) Not to make this political (ok, fine, making this political,) but that in itself is something I have overwhelming gratitude for especially considering how many millions of Americans can't afford their medical bills. I'm grateful that my company not only has great health insurance benefits, but disability as well - I've been able to take all the time off I need with full pay and without having to dip into my vacation days. Not to mention, my colleagues and managers and HR team have been nothing but encouraging and supportive, which I know is not something everyone who has a medical issue that disrupts their work can say (if you're reading this guys, thank you!!) And of course the family and friends who have been inundating me with texts and calls, helping to quell the loneliness I'm feeling from being stuck at home. There's so much more to be thankful for, but finally, I need to remember to be thankful for this body that is healing (however slowly) because at the end of the day, it's the only one I have, and I'm grateful that it hasn't totally given up on me despite all the shit I've put it through over the years.
Surgery isn't the easy way out. It's painful, and lonely, and disruptive, and a constant reminder that my body is not invincible. But maybe this will be a lesson in how I can treat it better and listen to it more closely than I have before - a slow journey to finally, maybe, seeing my body as not a separate entity, but as an integral part of my holistic self.