Yesterday I received a call-back from my surgeon's nurse with a new plan of action.
After her initial call with the news last week, I was able to speak with my surgeon, Dr. Sands. He recommended surgery again, but agreed to help me make a plan to try to heal. First, he recommended making an appointment with an endocrinologist to make sure my bones were getting extra nutrients. He recommended putting no weight on my left leg and using crutches for the next 6 weeks. Also, I'll be going physical therapy exercises at home and strength my quads on a stationary bike every day.
It's not going to be easy, but it's a plan that could move my progress forward without surgery.
Crutches suck. There is nothing cool about them; I'm just in a new habit of saying "cool, cool, cool" because I started watched Community this week. Today is my first full day with crutches at work and I'm already frustrated by losing the ability carry anything that cannot go in a cross-body bag or pocket. However, my happiness for the chance to use crutches and possibly heal cancels out my frustrations.
Whenever I explain my situation to people, I try to smile and make sure they know I'm in good spirits about it. Of course, people feel sorry I have to use crutches, but they're usually shocked I've been walking with a fractured bone. They often tell me I'm a bad-ass, crazy tough, or some kind of super human, either because I regularly walk on nearly broken bones or because titanium is part of my body now (cc: Iron-man, although I do not think this makes me a hero). It makes me giddy that people consider me a bad-ass for my titanium, and it makes me smile even more. Even though my situation isn't ideal sometimes, I'm grateful for the titanium and the experience of needing to heal and overcome my weaknesses.
At the end of this trial healing, I'll return to Oklahoma City for another x-ray to examine if I'm healing or not. If I'm not, I'll most likely need to schedule my fourth surgery. I know another titanium rod would make me instantly strong. I'd never need to fear my femur or hip breaking. I know how to get through the recovery because I've been through it before. But, I'd much rather try to build my own strength rather than let more titanium be strong for me.
For the next six-ish week, I'll occasionally update the status of my progress here. I'd greatly appreciate any healing good vibes you could send.