Day 22: In the Water

I swam in the sunshine today and it was pretty glorious.

This morning I cut off my soft cast. My lower leg is finally free although I am supposed to keep the boot on at all times except when showering and in the pool. As the first order of business, I finally washed and shaved my leg. Note: There is a tremendous amount of dead skin that accumulates over three weeks but doesn’t fall off at its normal rate when it’s under wraps.

Then it was off to the pool. I took the knee scooter but could probably could manage things on the iWalk or crutches in the future as I get dropped off right by the entrance and pools are well set up to accommodate the physically challenged. I got in and swam in the sun for around 50 minutes. Nothing hard, just easy laps and all with the pull buoy. The day before my surgery, I was swimming better than I ever had in my life whereas today I felt years removed from that fitness. It’s a combination of being out of the water, swimming only with a pull buoy, and some apprehension about my heel. I know I’ll be feeling more like my old self in a few swims though.

The apprehension part is interesting. The instinct to protect an injured body part is obviously a very useful evolutionary trait but I wonder where the physical signalling stops and the psychological starts. My heel never really hurt very much after surgery. It’s a little tender to the touch but my worry about hurting it seems disproportionate to any actual discomfort I have experienced. For example, even though I was following doctors orders and not doing anything I shouldn’t today I kept imagining that my incision was suddenly opening up. I’m constantly plagued with the nagging thought that I’m going to forget myself and put weight on my foot by suddenly jumping up from the couch even though that seems a highly unlikely scenario. I’m curious to see how I will feel in a few weeks when I have to start putting weight on my foot and how the retraining of my brain will go.

For now though, my brain is just a little fried from reading hundreds of pages of deposition testimony and it’s time for bed. More thoughts and swims to come soon.

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