The inevitable has been accomplished: after two months of medical testing to make sure things were copacetic, I finally had the surgery for my torn left meniscus. I’ve had a bunch of surgeries in my life; this was the first one really where I have the comfort of my Alexander Technique lessons and training to keep me great company. This knowledge will assist me in going through the recovery period as efficiently and healthily as possible. No end gaining right? This was a less invasive arthroscopic surgery. None the less it was a surgery–an invasion. I will have a lengthy recuperation. For awhile I will need a cane to walk
As I was being prepped for the surgery, I found myself doing whispered ahs and directing. “Let my neck be free” I kept saying to myself. “Lengthen and widen.” I had a chat with the anesthesiologist about the technique. She had never heard of it (so what else is new?) but she was intrigued and she promised to research it out. I certainly hope she does! Later, after the surgery, when I came back into consciousness, I realized that lots of the mental stress I had been carrying around, touching on all aspects of my life, had disappeared. I had known that this whole scene of waiting for the surgery to happen had been really stressing me out. Surgery over…stress reduced.
I had a lesson two days before the surgery. For that lesson I did table, then hands on back of chair while seated, then table again. I wanted to go over hands on back of chair, as I had done that activity two days previously when I paid a visit to my training course. My teacher and I went over this three or four times. Hands on back of chair is something that I will be able to do now, in this immediate post-operative stage. Easier than standing, of course, but anyway I cannot get into a position of mechanical advantage–aka a monkey–at the moment.
All in all this little grouping of my last three lessons was noteworthy. I had been walking around in mega-pain in my legs, and in fact, all over my body. I must have been crunching down big time. Ha! I must have gotten temporarily shorter. My neck/head/back alignment must have been pretty lousy. But then something happened during the first of these three lessons. With the assistance of my teacher, I managed to undo big time. Much of the pain just evaporated. It just vanished. It was magical, and of course this occurrence brought me back to why I had started lessons in the first place. After each of these three lessons, I walked out with that light as a feather feeling, that feeling one wants and learns to expect after a lesson. I felt kind of terrific even though I as walking in slow motion.
We talked meniscus surgery and recuperation strategies. Bags of frozen peas. That’s what he recommended for the continual post-operative icing of the knee. I did stock up on a few large bags of frozen peas so that I can rotate them as needed. Let me tell you, this scenario is certainly better than dealing with ice cubes. Who knew? I received explicit instructions on how to frozen-pea-up my knee. Alas, I am so susceptible to the cold. One word only in French means “susceptible to the cold.” How economical! The feminine version of that word is frileuse. All who know me know that I am always frileuse. Moi je suis frileuse. And here I am with a frozen pea ice pack perched on my knee for three to four hours at a time. Then I get to take it off for an hour. Ah, heaven: a short respite from the cold!