Written by Adrienne Riveros The Truest “Joint Effort”
(CONTINUED FROM COVER)
Just as Carlos had feared, his suspicions were correct - torn ACL and, to add insult to injury, he had a torn meniscus as well. This meant surgery for him. We prepared as fast as we could and the surgery dayquicklyarrived. Isaid “I loveyou” tohim in the pre-op area and then, there I was...just sitting in the waiting room, waiting for the doctor to come out and tell me all had gone great. After what felt like forever, he finally came out and told me that he was able to repair everything, including the meniscus. That was great! It’s exactly what we wanted! However, that meant Carlos would be non-weight bearing on that leg for about 8 weeks or so. Are you figuring the math yet? Well, Carlos was a hit with the nurses in the post-op area. Naturally a people-person, you can imagine him on the good drugs. He had people in stitches back there. He even convinced his transport lady to push his wheelchair fast out of the door so he could feel like he was on a roller coaster! He looked like a little kid, clutching his juice and crackers and holding up the peace sign as theyburnedup the tremendouslyadventurous 10 feet from the door to the car. We got him home and he spent the weekend resting up. Come Monday, it was back to work for him. How in the world could he work as a PT just a few days after surgery, you ask? He is tough as an ox and, with the help of his inventive, very pregnant, occupational therapistwife (that’s me), we rigged up his wheelchair to prop his leg up throughout the day so he could stretch and
keep the swelling down. He was able to stand for short time periods on one leg and continue to treat and care for his patients. It was quite a sight - thecombinationofcomedyanddedication - and it made for wonderfully entertaining days. As the time passed, his motion got better and pain went down. He was diligent in getting his rangeofmotionback.Greysoncontinued togrow and grow in my belly. We were counting the days until he could start weight bearing and begin trying to walk without the crutches. Eventually, this time came. He could walk slowly and stand. Then, Thursday came. That Thursday. I worked that morning, just as I had all the days before. During my scheduledultrasound, they decided to admit me to the hospital and induce labor. This was a surprise, but we were ready. My bag was packed.The therapist filling in for me was ready to go. The nursery was ready. Everything was in place. They started the induction on Friday morning.By the timeSaturdaymorningcame, the contractions had started. By Saturday evening, I was in active labor. Eventually, a culmination of things led to the operating room and a very happy ending. Our sweet baby Greyson arrived without complication, but the road was long. Carlos had only just been able to stand for a few days prior and, during one of the sweetest, most raw and sincere times of our lives, he was able to stand by my side - on his newly operated knee. During those days, it held up more than just his body. It supported Carlos as he held my hand and supported me as our lives were forever changed. Every day, I am thankful for baby Greyson…and that healthy knee.
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