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Beauty and The Knee

It’s the New Year and I had the best of intentions. Nope. My little body had other plans for me. You see, I've been busy preparing to go to New Orleans to give a couple of talks motivating physicians and nurses to become more fully engaged in their work to help achieve better outcomes in people with chronic conditions. That sounds like a lot of jargon, doesn't it? But it's not. It's simply about opening people's hearts and minds a little bit more.

They say the eyes are the windows to the soul. I think my right knee is the window to my musculo-skeletal system. I tried to get up last week and nasty pain came screaming out of my knee. Stand on it? No way.

Twenty years ago, I had surgery to address a chronically -inflamed knee. It didn’t help that my work as an early intervention specialist with deaf children involved crawling around on the floor playing with babies. I did this most of the day to show parents how to create a language-rich environment for their kids (see previous update).

After the operation, the surgeon told me that I’d be on feet and walking again within two weeks. When I was still on crutches two weeks later, he changed his tune and declared I’d need to use a cane for the rest of my life. Neither statement was true.

I set up camp at my parents’ house and for the next three months, my dad became my coach. Twice a day, every day, he pushed, encouraged and wheedled me through my exercise program. Three months later, I was back at work, back on my two-mile daily walks and back to dancing on the weekends.

Judy with Coach Dad.jpg

Thanks, Dad.

But my little knee was never quite the same after the surgery and over the years, if I over-do it (which is a lot) it tends to swell up. Hence, the occasional, affectionate nickname, Potato…

… back to the present -

Anti-inflammatories, x-rays, an MRI and a cortisone shot later, I'm finally re-surfacing. It's a little grisly inside that knee, but it's mine and I love it. If I don't, who will? It needs some rest so I'm tooling around in a wheelchair this past week, bumping into walls, chairs and husband a lot. Maybe my knee wanted to give me some R&R before I go. Maybe it couldn't see walking all around a convention center. Maybe I have an active imagination. We'll see how it goes….

It’s now several days later and we are in the midst of the continuing saga of (music swells … better the music than the knee) Beauty and The Knee OR Can one knee actually have so many crazy things going on inside it? In my case, a resounding YES! As of this update, I am finally able to stand up and if I close my eyes and really focus on tightening that quad muscle immediately north of said knee, I can take an assisted isolated step. Note to self: must work on doing that trick with eyes open. This, dear readers, is most definitely a step in the right direction (pun resoundingly intended). Stay tuned to read more on the New Orleans speaking engagements and to check out what else is going on...

While we all wait, if you’re hungry, click here for my healthy and super-flavorful recipe for Cherry-Vanilla Almond Granola on my healthy food blog, Bumbleberry Breeze. This is what I do in my spare time (though I’m having a little issue locating some of that these days).

Be Well. Be Strong. Be Here.

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