My Own Rubicon–11 July 2017

Julius Caesar’s crossing the Rubicon River in Italy was an event in 49 BC that precipitated the Roman Civil War, which ultimately led to Caesar’s becoming dictator for life and the rise of the imperial era of Rome.

Caesar’s Rubicon was life changing.

My own Rubicon (the meaning used as a metaphor for change) does not carry the unknown good fortune that Caesar experienced although mine has been an unforgettable escapade, one that is not known for kindness.

The morning of July eleventh I had my right knee replaced. I welcomed a better future, one that allowed me to return to my pleasures after the surgery! I had visions of bicycling, gardening, walking once again taking care of what I used to do.

Since that date I ain’t done much!

My surgeon said I could have major pain, but many people are with little pain. I focused on that group wrongfully and when the pain began I was not happy. I don’t mind usual pain but what I had was the opposite. And so, I took the Oxycodone line up for the first week. I reacted badly and found I had developed Serotonin Syndrome. My own medication with Serotonin combined with the Serotonin in the pain medication. Unfortunately it takes  hallucinations, shaking and tremors to a particularly high pitch.

After the Oxy medication I tried Delaudid which is a morphine based pain-killer. The doctor gave me a very low dose and if the dose were higher it would have just added more Serotonin in my little brain. I only had ice and raising my leg far above my head to reduce swelling and pain. The next step was therapy and I cringed at the idea.

Therapy lasted for a few weeks. Every time my therapist put weights on my leg the following days were more painful. Finally, Hurricane Irma arrived. Our house is old and we worried about how it would hold up. The night she was to come ashore we stayed in a hotel. Two days later we came home. The old house was great. The big beautiful tree out front wasn’t.  Half of its major branches were laying on the lawn.

After much ado, I had my gardener come, but he has had problems with us because his ADHD gets in the way of his understanding what is said.  He arrived and thirty minutes later he drove off. He said he couldn’t handle the bad karma in his head! M. already had carried big limbs out for city pick up but there was much more debris to deal with.

For other a month I lived only on our second floor. M. brought everything I needed. I did this to heal the knee by not using the stairway. This also was instrumental in keeping me out of the refrigerator!

Standing in the middle of the yard, dismayed at the gardener and the yard I decided I had to chance working and that it would not harm the knee. Soon, my sweet, tiny housekeeper flew through the front door, picked up a big rake and started gathering up the mess. Without further thought I worked with her. After she left my knees felt ok. I decided to mow the back yard and told myself that if pain overwhelmed me then I was the one to blame.

OVERWHELMED! Oh that is an understatement. The first few days weren’t bad. Then I found that to walk up or downstairs when it was necessary produced incredible pain in both knees. Once again I am staying on the second floor. I find that I am very stubborn. I still cheat and go to the third floor, or go to the kitchen to cook or into the garage to launder the clothes;.

Each time a pain hits I know my Rubicon is reminding me of this change in my life and is telling me to let things heal!

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