MPFL: Week 10

Week 10 (Feb 19 – 25)

Since I started PT (literally the day after I had my surgery), I’ve gone three times a week. As I’m approaching the end of my time at home *hopefully*, we’ve been trying to get a care plan in place for when I return to LA. This raises a while new set of obstacles when it comes to finding a PT in my area that is covered by our insurance. Which thank god for the coverage that we are getting, because I’m sitting somewhere around $75,000 and that’s not including future physical therapy appointments.

Thankfully, my therapist here put out some feelers to her network to find some physical therapy options in Los Angeles that specialize in performing art rehabilitation. I’ve started to notice that the more I push myself to do more “dance like” movements, or at least exercises that help me work towards those kinds of things, the more strides I continue to make. Now that I’ve regained basic day-to-day skills, I’m pretty pumped about the possibility of continuing my rehab down a more specialized path in Los Angeles. 

Although I am not doing any type of pilates or danced based therapy yet, a lot of the exercises I’ve started to do at this point are ones that I can actually do at the gym. Some of my favorites being leg presses, weighted step ups and now even hamstring curls. I’m not cleared to do most open kinetic chain movements until I hit 16 weeks out. So while I have definitely made strides during my time in PT, I’ve got quite a long ways to go before I am back to dancing again. 

At this point I’ve slipped a few different times as I try to find my footing and stay stabilized. Each time it’s happened it’s been minor, but definitely pushed past my comfortable range of motion as far as bending goes. This week while doing kickbacks with the resistance band, I lost control and the band snapped back too fast, causing my leg to bend about 10 degrees past where I am comfortable. In the moment it was miserable, but no damage was done. And much like last time this happened, I ended up being able to bend it more from that point forward.

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Study buddy still going strong with the diaper.

Since I probably will not be going 3 times a week in LA, they recommended that I shave off 1 day a week while I’m still here. That way I can get used to kind of doing some of it on my own either at home or at the gym. I basically was already doing this, only just in addition to the 3 PT appointments. I have a very good understanding of the human body and exercise in general, so this was exciting to me that they trust me to hold myself accountable to rehab myself a bit. Especially since I had just finished reading and completing all the modules for the NASAM CPT exam!!!! I am so pumped to be through all of the materials and have learned so much along the way that has been beneficial in my recovery. I’m scheduled to take the test in Iowa just before I return.

Preparations begin

As my days in Iowa are likely dwindling down, I’ve really been trying to soak up the time with the people that have been my support system here. Between not being able to drive and not trusting people at bars or public events to be mindful of my injury, I haven’t had too many nights out. Instead, we spent our Friday night with our neighbors drinking wine and playing heads up (literally my go to game in pretty much any situation). She also waxed the inside of my nose so that was extremely interesting as you can probably imageine. She literally put some wax up in there then stuck a popsicle stick in my nostril and YANKED it out once it dried. Luckily I was a few glasses of wine into the evening at that point. 

The next day we headed down the road to Des Moines to trade in my car. This is huge because that means that the preparations for my trip back have officially begun. I bought my first car just before I moved to Los Angeles almost 4 years ago. While good ole Snoop has had a decent run, she’s got a million blindspots and somewhere around 150,000 miles on her. Can’t say I was sad to see her go in all her dinged up glory.I ended up going with a cute little wine colored Kia Optima with way less miles and a nice big ole screen to do apple car play on so I’m not constantly fidgeting with my maps app on my phone. And the best news to my friends- there’s literally zero blindspots and the mirrors alert you if there is a car in your way and you’re trying to get over. Maybe now people will want to ride with me more. The funniest part about this trade in is that I didn’t even get to drive the car before the deal was done. I think by this point I could have managed, but my parents were adamant about not letting me drive until I had the green light, so to the passenger seat I went.

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She is thrilled

Preparations to go home continued as I took my dog to get her vaccinations (necessary if I wanna bring her to daycare or anywhere for that matter) and my mom and I headed to dinner to sit and plan our travels home. If all goes as expected during my appointment on the 2nd, we planned to push off March 13th or 14th. We began to plan the trip back cautiously, especially since I have already half planned this drive 2 or 3 different times months earlier. I remained hopeful that this was going to be it this time, but left space in my head for potential disappointment as well. I  have learned my lesson that ignorance is not bliss in this scenario. It’s best to be realistic and fully aware of the potential setbacks.

img_8921As we sat there and tired to line up all the plans, I felt so many different emotions. I was excited, I was nervous and I was prepared to be overwhelmed. It’s going to be a biiiig adjustment. Especially when walking to the bathroom by myself and without my brace in a large restaurant that evening was considered a win in my book. I couldn’t help but let my thoughts turn to worry. How will I navigate a crowded grocery store or bar? Will I struggle to find new hobbies and workouts that are knee friendly? Have I lost some of my independence during this recovery? 

I figured some of this worry would diminish after my appointment on the 2nd. I was ready to find out for sure if my hard work had finally paid off. What seemed so far away 5 weeks ago was now just around the corner.

Find out what happens here!

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