Day 1 After Ankle Surgery

It is day 1 after ankle surgery yesterday, so it’s early days.

I got through the first night. Only fell once, and I think it was due to the knee scooter cushion that we added where my knee rests on the scooter.

This morning I took that off. No matter how much it was tightened, it would still come loose. And as I went around corners, it would tend to slide sideways a bit, which caused me to be unbalanced.

A Photo Of Me With The Leg Cast:

In Day 1 After Ankle Surgery, this is me in my recliner. I have my cast elevated to  help with pain.

This is me sitting in my chair. I love the foam leg support elevation pillow

I ordered. As you can see, the cast is very thick around the ankle area. Which makes sense. That’s what needs protecting.

Last night the bone pain set in. Back in my twenties, I had a sliver of hip bone taken off to fuse into my hand. Their taking a piece of my bone was the most awful pain I’ve ever gone through.

So I expected the bone he chiseled out to be about the same way.

For the nerve pain, he ordered Gabapentin.

I had pre-registered online before I went to the hospital, so that was already taken care of. I’d already signed all the paperwork digitally.

So all I had to do was tell them I was there yesterday morning and have a plastic bracelet placed around my wrist.

Kendra came over yesterday afternoon and tried to get my medications organized and written down.

Impressed With This Young Doctor:

I was really impressed with this 37-year-old doctor. He made sure I had the 4 medications filled before the day of surgery. He was very thorough and organized.

One medication he prescribed was Gabapentin. Another was Hydrocodone (enough pills for up to 7 days). He called in something for nausea, which I never seem to need. And aspirin for blood clotting.

When he came in to talk to me and Kasi before surgery, he took a pin and wrote his initials on my right leg. I guess that’s to make absolutely sure there is no mix-up.

The whole experience went very smoothly.

The Basket We Put On My Scooter:

I had an individual container of Carnation Instant Breakfast this morning. And I also ordered individual packets of trail mix I can have for lunch if need be.

The many lines of jute you see around the basket are my handiwork. The basket kept getting knocked about.

Steve’s late wife made this basket, so I wanted to make sure it didn’t get dinged when I went around corners.

This is the knee scooter I bought to get me through recovery. I tied jute all over the basket attaching it to the scooter to keep it from moving around.

I know it looks pretty crazy, but one thing led to another. I’d tie a piece of jute I’d ordered from Amazon in one spot and then the other side would be loose.

So I just kept going, for an hour and a half, to balance it all out.

Getting Reaccustomed To The Knee Scooter:

I’m pretty accustomed to getting around on the knee scooter now. With the big basket, I can take things from one room to another.

I was able to have my coffee this morning in the red 12-ounce insulated coffee travel mug I ordered from Amazon.

How I Bathe:

Last night I took a bath; well, a half-bath. I bathed the same way I did with the two other ankle surgeries. I didn’t even need the plastic cast cover.

First I took the handheld shower head with the hose and let it hang down in the tub.

Then I sat on the side of the tub. With my hands holding onto each of the two shower grab bars, I eased myself back into the tub. My legs were bent at the knee and not in the tub.

I then soaped myself and washed it off with the handheld shower head hose. I turned the water off and then grabbed onto the grab bars and pulled myself up to a sitting position.

I toweled myself off. The knee scooter was right there in my small bathroom, locked into place so it didn’t move. Then I turned it around and left the bathroom.

In Day 1 After Ankle Surgery, I don't dare go outside. But I can view my pretty yard from the patio door.

The Little Things:

The hardest part of all this, aside from the pain, is having to figure out how to get things from one place to another. Without making too many trips, which is exhausting.

For instance, I’ll put my phone in the basket but forget the medications I meant to put in there to sit next to my chair.

I think in a day or so I’ll have figured out all the little things I need to do as I go from room to room. It will get easier.

And the tasks will become more seamless in nature.

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44 Comments

  1. Glad you are doing as well as you are!! Hope things continue to improve daily!! Take much care!!

  2. Brenda I’m glad your surgery went so well and hopefully your ankle problems will soon be a thing of the past but I must agree with others regarding bathing. No matter how capable you feel you are accidents, especially falls in bathrooms are not uncommon. If you’re dead set on getting in the tub maybe you could only do so when someone is in the apartment with you? A good friend of mine who has dealt with ankle issues similar to yours for years thought she was strong enough to handle a tub bath following one of her first surgeries but slipped and was unable to get out of the tub by herself. Thank goodness she was ok and a neighbor bringing food showed up a short time afterward and was able to get her upright. She was lucky to not been seriously injured and like she said ” blessed that the EMT didn’t have to rescue her like a beached whale”. She learned her lesson and for later surgeries she made do with sponge baths unless someone was in the house if/when she took a tub bath or shower. It’s always better to be safe than sorry. Take it easy and take care of yourself.

  3. You are doing very well, especially on your own! Be very careful with the bathing. Maybe just use a washcloth at the sink for the first week, especially while you’re on painkillers.

  4. So glad your doing well with it seems to me you really thought of everything which is great sometimes it takes some planning thanks for sharing helps with ideas on my end hoping a speedy recovery 🌸🌸

    1. I have to plan because both my girls are always busy and I have to try to fend for myself. But I don’t mind.

  5. I hope now that your surgery is done that your pain will just go away, so u can live pain free from all that Brenda! Please be careful with your scooter so u don’t fall again!

    I fell when I was on my exercise machine once and landed right between my hard walnut table and floor! I was sooo lucky bc a few inches more the other way I’d prob be gone!

    Take care and rest, rest and rest!

    1. I’m more in control of the scooter with that foam cushion off actually. It kept sliding back and forth and that was causing the problem.

  6. Thinking of you and grateful for the updates. Have to admit I was wondering about that bath – I have poor upper body, arm strength so it would be no go for me. Sponge baths only would be my plan.
    Love the big basket – Steve’s wife was a skilled basketmaker!
    How is feeding Ivy going? Can you manage getting the cans open and the dish down for her? Or is she on dry food and eating on a higher surface. Just curious – my Max is on wet food prescribed by his vet and his dishes are on the floor. It’s funny how you think of these little chores and how you would do them if not as mobile.
    Take good care, so happy the surgery is over.

    1. She will only eat dry food now. My housekeeper was here today and found little red ants all around Ivy’s food. So I had her move Ivy’s bowls to the dining space and I have the plastic container of food up high where I can get to it easily.

  7. Glad it went well, Brenda. I hope you’re feeling better super soon. I’m glad to hear that you liked your doctor, you have confidence in him and you have the support of your daughters. That’s all so important when you’re on the road to recovery. I hope it’s a quick trip!!

  8. So good to read your day is going smoothly so far. I am amazed you wrote us yesterday and today too. You are a tough cookie! And gosh you could write a piece for AARP magazine on how to prepare for surgery when you live alone.
    You are so prepared and thinking ahead . Most people would not have done all you have. Keep on healing and your upbeat attitude is going to accelerate all the good vibes to continue onto better health.

    1. I didn’t really have a choice living by myself. I like to be prepared for things and all possible eventualities. It makes me feel more in control of things.

  9. Brenda, I’m so glad you seem to be doing so well today! Your spirits sound good too. Attitude is everything they say, and your’s is very positive. That’s a good thing. Ok… about the bath… I hate that it sounds like we are all ganging up on you, because we say it with love, but just imagine something happens that you don’t expect, and you can’t get yourself out of the bathtub. Is your phone within reach to call for help? And if someone does need to come rescue you, you will be stark naked! I think I’d die of embarrassment if it were me! Maybe keep a robe or towel within reach to drape over yourself if necessary. I think the sponge bath is a good idea for now anyway. When/if you can bear weight on your ankle, then maybe try taking a real shower. A sponge bath isn’t so bad… just ask Ivy. She takes them all the time, lol! Again, it’s just our advice, because we all worry and care about you so much! 💕

    1. Both a phone and a towel is right there. It is really a very easy way to bathe, even though it might sound dangerous. With the grab bars being there, I don’t worry because I know I can pull myself up.

  10. So happy to hear that the surgery is behind you and all went well. Take your time healing and be extra good to yourself. You deserve it after all the pain you have suffered with this ankle. I’m so pleased that you found this exceptional doctor. That is surely comforting and lowers any anxiety about the final outcome of the surgery.

    Anyway, you were in my tho’ts all day yesterday and I had my candle burning for you.

    1. Thanks for thinking of me, Naomi. The doctor’s office called today and my post-op appointment is on July 12. Now I’ve just got to find someone who can take me. Steve has a doctor’s appointment. Kendra has a meeting and Kasi has work. May have to change the date.

  11. Glad you are well and on the mend. Enjoy your cozy little place and catch up on some favorite tv maybe? Love your writing but take some time for you. We’ll be here when you are ready.

  12. I know what u mean. I had lower back surgery on Halloween night once..it was an emergency as i was nearing paralysis.
    I woke up in recovery and knew the new pain was sooo much better than the old pain. I recovered well.

    1. I did the same with back surgery. No pain. Twenty years later I had a milligram. That doctor told me he could not see the repairs they were so well done.

  13. Sounds to me like you are doing very good, and have everything thought out, and under control. Like you wrote, you’ve had surgery before, and know what and how to deal with it now. Good to have the pain pills handy, when needed.
    Just a note, when I had cataract surgery, my doctor put her initials above the eye before the procedure too. Very good idea, I have to say!
    Stay Strong, Brenda, thinking of you…

    1. I agree. I think it is a good idea. Once I was back in the operating room, someone looked for his initials on my leg before the surgeon came into the room and said: “Yep, he always does that.”

  14. You need to take it easy. And it’s to be expected you wear out easily, but please be careful.

    That basket Steve loaned you is a beautiful piece of work. I can see why you attached it.

    1. He brought it over for me to use. But I sure didn’t want to get it nicked against the wall or something. His late wife was an artist of various mediums and it is quite beautiful and very well made.

  15. Had to smile, and laugh a wee bit, when I read about your doc initialing your right leg. 🙂 Better to be safe than sorry.
    Have to agree with the other comments about bathing in the manner you described… holy moly, girlfriend! Am hoping you’ll seriously consider sponge baths as an alternative for a bit.
    You “sound” wonderful — chipper & bright. Please take it easy, grant yourself peace & grace, and get lots of rest. I have absolutely no doubt that you’ll have everything figured out very soon, and all will be well. Wishing you & Ivy a peaceful, comfortable & restful day!

    1. I know it might sound that way, but it’s the easiest way to bathe myself. The fastest way and the least messy way. I’ve done it after every ankle surgery and I am not worried about anything happening because I have those grab bars right where I need them.

  16. I agree with your other poster. Please be careful with your bath. I was actually shocked you tried sitting on the edge of the tub. What if you fell backwards? When I had my ankle surgery, I stuck to sponge baths at the sink for awhile. Good luck in your healing. Rest is what you need.

  17. Brenda, please be careful taking a bath like you did, can’t you just take a sponge bath for now? Sounds like you are doing well for your first day!

  18. Exhaustion is to be expected – one little chore and you feel like you need to sit down to rest. Small steps and you’ll be healed and hopefully much better than you have been. Please, please, please be careful with the whole bath thing. Try to make the best of your day. Thinking of you with healing thoughts!

    1. I am very careful. I’m a planner and I have every single thing I’m doing planned out before I do it for safety.

  19. Good to hear from you. Hoping things continue to run smoothly and you get some rest. Remember every day will be better than the last.

    1. Somehow I can take this pain better than the former ankle pain. At least this pain may lead to good results. I had bone pain before surgery, so it’s nothing new to me.

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