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No guarantees

Before my surgery, few people knew about my dysplasia and subsequent hip problems. I didn't talk about it much and tried to hide my pain as best I could. As my surgery approached and I was forced to face everything head on, I chose to make light of as many aspects of dysplasia and PAOs as I could.

Today, I still brush off questions about my hips and don't get into too much detail about how things are going. Maybe this is my way of coping ... to pretend dysplasia is nothing more than an ache in my hip, not a condition that threatens my active lifestyle and dreams for my future.

However, I can't always pretend. I can't forget that my hips aren't as strong or as stable as they should be. And I can't plan that I'll always be as active and pain free as I am today. I've learned to be thankful for each day that I can run around and play, knowing full well that tomorrow may be different.

Last week, my dysplasia reminded me that not everyone can pin their hopes solely on today. Last week, I lost someone I cared about because he wanted a plan, a guarantee for certain things in life. Unfortunately, I can't grant this certainty, nor do I want to. As much as I hate losing him and being reminded of this "disability" of mine, I'm so lucky and so happy to be living my life in the present, trying all the while to make decisions based on what I want, not what I fear.

And one day, I'll meet someone to share this mindset -- and my life -- with.

Comments

MY PAO STORY said…
Cassie,
I hope you find someone that understands and will love you for "you" - not for what you can guarantee them....
Beth :)
Amanda said…
Oh no he didn't. If this is the same "him" that I think it is, I'm gonna whoop his butt!

Someone that isn't 100 percent behind you isn't worth the time or energy. Trust me on that one :)

There is someone out there who will love you -- and your less-than-perfect hips -- and accept that you are you and nothing more, nothing less.

I still love you!
Brenna Wolfe said…
I'm so sorry Cass.......I know how you feel though. It's a major ordeal for someone else to deal with our hip issues and it takes a special person that we all deserve in order to properly care for us and respect our views. I wish you nothing but the best.

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Questions for surgeon pre-op

Below is my list of questions to ask Dr. Mayo pre-op.

About pre-op care and my dysplasia How many degrees is my dysplasia?How’s the other hip? When will I need surgery on it?What are my chances for a successful surgery?Should I be following any special diet or medication restrictions?
About the surgery
How long is the surgery?Will you be doing the entire surgery or do other surgeons help?Chances of finding FAI or tears in labrum? Then what?Worst-case scenario while in surgery? Any chance of THR or no PAO?Will I be intubated?Do you do a bone graft?Where will scar be?What kind of stitching?When will the catheter go in?What are the screws made of?Will I lose much blood during surgery? Should I donate my own blood prior to surgery? If so, will I get that blood back? About post-op care
What can I expect during my hospital stay? How long will I be in the hospital?How will my pain be managed in the hospital and at home? Will I get an epidural? When will it go in? What items do I need at home to he…

4 months post-op/scar pic

If there's one blanket statement I could make about having a periacetabular osteotomy, I would say this:

It's a long recovery.

When friends, family, co-workers and strangers have comments or questions about the surgery, it's usually something like: "That sounds awful!" or "Was it really painful?" or "Scary."

Truth is, while it was awful, painful and scary at times, this whole time, it simply has been long. At four months post-op, I still feel remnants of surgery in my hip. I still can't lie on my op side for longer than an hour or two without discomfort, and I still have to help my leg in and out of the car on occasion. My hip is still tender to the touch, and of course, that tailbone ...

Don't get me wrong. I have SO much to celebrate, and I can't imagine myself happier with my left hip. I have recovered smoothly and quickly. I'm not asking for anything more. That being said, I have made the following progress in the past two …

3 years post-op LPAO

A surgery can change your body. Two surgeries can change everything.

Today, on the third anniversary of my LPAO, I inevitably think back to my first operation and the years leading up to that day.

Everything has changed.

I am an outdoors enthusiast and exercise nut. I can stay on my feet all day. My new body has freed my soul, and my heart responds in kind.

The breakdown is exactly the same as it was at two years post-op: zero pain with a couple of exceptions, great range of motion, same tingly patch and itching. The one difference is that my tailbone pain has waned considerably, which gives me much, much relief.

I'm a different person today than I was on April 23, 2008, and I'll be forever thankful.