Sooo…since the end of the year is typically down time for us wedding photogs, I took the opportunity to have some long needed corrective surgery. In total, I’ve had two since November. On the whole, I really have to thank my surgeon, Dr. David S. Wolf because he really has gone above and far beyond any other doctor I have ever had.
From meeting me well after office hours, two days before Thanksgiving to change a bloody bandage, to calling me two days ago way past a decent hour for the sake of fixing busted stitches, he’s been so amazing. I cannot brag about him enough. I liken him to those long-fabled doctors who gave such good care they even made house calls. Of course, he doesn’t make house calls…but darn close! In fact, if you are having any issues with your footsies or ankles, he is bar none the best doc in the Houston area.
Basically, my issue was pretty straight forward and even common. After many years, my left foot finally busted due to a “hallux valgus”.
Yes, I like fancy medical terms. That’s partly why I’m so addicted to Mystery Diagnosis. But I digress.
After our consult, it was determined that only corrective surgery would do. Because it was just plain painful to walk, and for someone who relies on being quick on their feet to photographically capture what the everyday person will miss in real life, this was just not an option. And since the same deviation occurred on my right foot – thank you mother nature and your keen sense of symmetry – I had to get this one done too. My right foot was not producing the same pain as my left, but hey, I’m all for beating pain to the punch. Does that make sense here? Probably not. Surgery IS painful. OK, I never claimed to make sense 100% of the time.
Where was I going with this? Oh yeah. So I’ve been asked by friends, family, concerned citizens – what is this process like? In a word:
I had to have one good foot to walk on at a time so I had to have two separate surgeries. My left foot is about 7 weeks post op. And yes…I will include photos towards the end of this post. But BE WARNED. Don’t look if you are squeamish. That probably just guaranteed you will look. I know, it’s in our nature…can’t look away from the train wreck. But don’t say I didn’t warn you.
My right foot, is about two and a half weeks post op, and still very much “ouchie”. In fact, both surgeries, though fixing the same thing, to different degrees, went not so much the same way. Am I still speaking in riddles? OK, let me rephrase. Both surgeries were correcting the same issue, but produced different experiences for me.
To shorten the story, healing times have been a little different for each, and then tearing stitches on my right foot definitely didn’t help things the other day. Bruising was different for each foot – one bruised more than the other. I had an outer pin on each foot but on the left it was located between my toes, and on the right foot it was placed on the outer-left side of my foot, which I found highly more annoying and painful. I did have a pain pump for the left foot, but not the right foot. Oddly enough, I actually think I prefer not having one. For some reason, I correlate this to the extended time it has taken for me to regain full flexibility and motion in one foot over the other. The left one, which had the pain pump seems more stiff. Maybe because it was so numb that first week that I hardly moved it at all. Who knows?
There is physical therapy in all of this, and that’s a whole other subject. I dislike PT almost as much as I hate brussel sprouts. My feet hurt like heck the day after. But the most annoying thing in all of this? Not being able to get around like I’m used to. From being a total “hop-along” (as several of my friends have sweetly termed me), to not being able to drive (having a standard transmission and therefore a clutch to push is not ideal for this), to just having to handle the every day task in a much different and more annoying way. And did I mention that I haven’t been able to wear heels since FOREVER!?!? I can no longer hide how very short I am.
On the upside, I’m more appreciative of the little things. I say thanks to the Universe everyday for having the ability and opportunity to correct this issue in the first place, not to mention that I’m still a healthy, non-handicapped individual. Because let’s face it, this will be over in about two more weeks and the searing pain I used to feel in my left foot is already gone. Thanks to my new buddy, Ibuprofen, the pain that’s left is completely manageable. Minus the hiccups and extended healing times, I really, truly cannot complain. So I’m excited to return to life as I knew it very soon! Actually, it should be a *new and improved* life, really.
If you’re wondering why the heck I’m posting about surgery and busted feet…well, duh. It’s because nobody knows what an operated foot looks like! ;) For those of you who braved this looong post about my feet, here’s your long awaited reward. Ha ha! But seriously, if you puke at the sight of blood, open wounds, severe bruising, or just ugly feet…stop right here.
This one is about 8 hours post op…when I had that issue with over-bleeding. That yellow thing is the pain pump.
Sans bandage. Don’t you just love what iodine does to skin and nail color? Again, about 8 hours post op. That yellow thing between my toes is actually a metal pin that goes into the bone and outta my foot. Not so fun.
About 2.5 weeks post op on my right. Much more bruising on this foot. My left held the bruise on the underside, for some reason. This is right after the outer pin got pulled out and just before the sutures tore.
Left foot again, as of last Thursday. Still some swelling mid-foot. But surprisingly clean closure.
And that’s the photo re-cap! I know, I know. No photos of the open sutures. But I was kinda busy at the time!