This is Happening


I’ve known for months that this whole injury thing was going to end in surgery. During all this time that I’ve navigated the labyrinthine medical system — with constant referrals, tests, follow-up appointments and a lot of running around in circles – I’ve felt a little removed from the reality. In other words, the gravity of having surgery hadn’t really hit me because I’ve been running around in circles trying to get there.

Just the other day someone at work asked if I was bothered about surgery. They phrased this in graphic terms that would make a lot of people squeamish, and they were surprised by my calm reaction. It still hadn’t hit me.

This week I received the surgery packet with the exact time of the appointment, instructions on how to prepare, and other important details. We’re now inside of two weeks from the actual event, and it has now finally hit me. This is really happening.

Even though I’ve supported countless friends and family with their surgeries, I’ve never had one before. I’m not the kind of guy to get spooked by needles or medical facilities, but I am now getting a little nervous. My feeling now is similar to my only other phobia, which is a slight fear or flying. My mind knows that airplanes are one of the safest methods of travel, but I still feel weird when cruising at 30,000 feet. The same goes for this surgery. I’m aware that it is a routine, simple procedure, but I’m now feeling a little creeped about the idea of someone operating on me while passed out.

All that said, I couldn’t be more ready. In the last few weeks and months, there has been little improvement. There are good days and bad days. Even though the trip to Miami was a nice reprieve from the cold, the pain still exists. There is a constant burning sensation in the hip and groin region. Even though I can usually feel it in some capacity, sometimes it is worse than others. I’m looking forward to not feeling it again.

Many friends have given me advice. Immediately after the surgery, I am going to be in more pain than I can probably imagine. That’s going to suck. That’s also part of it. It is worth it to endure some tough days and weeks in order to get past this, and get back outside again.

There’s a lot of preparation to be done, but it is also important to treat myself and have some good times before starting with the recovery. We’re already talking about having a nice steak dinner on the evening before surgery, an indulgence that I rarely take anymore.

From here on out I’ll be counting down the days.

5 responses to “This is Happening

  • Wayne Wells

    Having been through some significant surgeries, a heavy meal the night before is not what you want to do. Go LIGHT.
    Save the steak for after.

    • aaronwest

      A couple others told me this same thing elsewhere. I’ll be rethinking the steak. We were just going to have a bigger dinner the night before because I’ll have to go so long without eating.

  • Wayne Wells

    You’ll be sleeping through a bunch of that time. Not so much calorie burn.
    I didn’t do so much riding this past year, trying to get through my adventure. That is to change this year. Mayhaps we see each other rehabbing out on the Fort?

  • John

    When I had my hip replaced I feared having the surgery, It was also my first major surgery, and I knew for years that I was going to need it. Just the thought of having my muscles cut and an implant in my body made me cringe. My advice to you is not to worry. It is going to happen and you will be surprised how much better life is afterwards, almost immediately. The recovery is not as bad as you would think and now, several years later I can’t remember much about it other than how surprised I was that it was nothing close to what I was fearing. I now cycle more than before, about 150 miles/week, and have no after effects from the surgery other than my quality of life is much better. My only regret from the surgery is that I did not have it done earlier. Look beyond the surgery and get ready to enjoy the new life ahead of you. Also consider this, you are going in so you can again cycle. Consider people who have cancer or other life threatening diseases. They don’t know the final outcome. You do.

  • Frank Burns

    ‘May the wind be at your back’…….

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