Hands are really pretty handy, aren’t they?
That’s a basic truth that I’ve had brought home to me anew this past week, as I recover from having carpel tunnel surgery on my right hand last Tuesday.
I am, by the way, right handed.
I find it a delicious bit of irony that the doctor told me that I must not do much with my hand at all until I get the stitches out (later today). I’m allowed to wiggle my fingers—almost identical to the way I move them when I am using a key board—and after the second day, I was able to drive—but that’s about it.
You’d think I would rejoice being told I could write, but do nothing else. Guess I’m just never happy no matter what.
I cannot get my stitches wet, and I cannot lift anything or put any pressure whatsoever on my right hand. I have to sleep with it elevated on a pillow, and I must avoid letting my hand hang down.
Fortunately, our second daughter is a nurse, and she has been kind enough to come by and change the dressing for me. When she has my stitches uncovered, she makes all kinds of “hmmm” sounds.
I’m not sure if there’s a problem or she’s just taking the opportunity to tease me. I am a notoriously easy mark, and my family, to a one—even the ones we’ve acquired—merciless teases.
The worst part of this entire situation isn’t the pain. It’s the forced inactivity.
Friends, it has truly been sheer hell for me, not being able to do anything. I’m such a creature of habit. I have my little routines—my boundaries—and I am happiest when I am plodding away within them.
Every morning I get up, turn on my computer, put the dishes in to soak, and scan my house making mental note of what jobs have to be done. I check my e-mail, then move on to my work in progress, and every thirty minutes or so get up and do other things. I call it multi-tasking.
This is the first time that I’ve been “laid up”, yet basically felt well enough to not be. The last time I was forced by medical circumstances to be idle was as a result of my triple by-pass surgery, 10 years ago. Back then I felt sick, and being inactive didn’t cause me stress.
I told my daughter a few days ago that my house was so “out of order” that it felt as if my skin was crawling. Her response was the same as her father’s had been. She took a moment, looked around, and declared that everything “looked fine”.
I have made a note to see to it they both get their eyes tested at the earliest opportunity.
Having just come home from California a week ago this past Sunday—and leaving for Texas this coming Sunday—I suppose one could say I didn’t exactly plan the timing of this procedure very well.
My beloved pointed out that there likely would never have been a perfect time for me to be “out of commission”. I suppose he’s right. I tend to be a bit of a perfectionist. And I really am used to being busy all day long.
When I hit my bed at night, I’m usually completely exhausted.
I can’t even really write for too long at a time in one go. I keep having to stop and rest my hand.
I know a few people who basically do nothing all day, every day. They sit and read, or watch television. They live in what I call Chaos, and don’t seem to mind it one bit.
How does anyone do that? The inactivity, the inability to tidy and cook and clean, is driving me crazy and believe me, it’s a short trip.
My beloved, in the mean time, has had to pitch in. He’s had to do the dishes every day, vacuum, and tidy where I cannot. By Sunday I was able to fold the laundry but I couldn’t really hang anything up or put it all away.
He knows how bad I feel that he’s had to do “my job”—suffice it to say that we’re both of an age that he isn’t used to doing any housework at all. And I suppose it’s not all negative, this situation I find myself in.
Mr. Ashbury has a newly refreshed appreciation for how much I actually do around the house. Or, as he so eloquently put it, “your life sucks”.
I know he means that in a kind, and loving way.