I have recently completed my seventh surgery. That feels crazy to say. I have learned quite a bit since my first and I wanted to share that wisdom with you. I’ve written before about what to expect. I highly recommend checking that out if you haven’t. Now we’re going to talk about items that you need for recovery. This will obviously depend on your specific surgery but these are the basics.
- Notepad and pen
This is great to have handy to write down medication times. It’s also good for pain tracking. In general, I find it incredibly helpful to have. I have always still accepted calls post surgery and if I need to write something down it’s nice not to have to scramble. Most of the time, moving has been a challenge post surgery so it’s good practice to have these available.
Depending on your surgery, you’ll have to stock up on specific snacks. For my tonsillectomy that was popsicles and vegan ice cream. After my gallbladder removal, I had bland foods like crackers. Hip surgery I ate whatever I wanted but made sure to keep it close. That would be my general tip, keep things close. If you’re recovering mostly on your own don’t expect a lot from yourself. Keep everything within an arm’s distance.
- Over the Counter Medication
Make sure that you have the pain and necessary over the counter medications. I usually get told to get tylenol and stool softener. It’s important to have stool softener after being on narcotics. As gross as it is, I learned that the very difficult way. It wasn’t fun and it was really painful. So make sure you have everything you need beforehand.
Have a plan for how you’ll entertain yourself post surgery. It’ll likely be tv but if you’re creative get a coloring book. Find a video game you like or start knitting. This is an excellent time to try new activities you usually don’t have time for. Don’t put a ton of pressure on yourself but have fun in your recovery time.
- Sit up Pillow/Workspace
Depending on your situation, you may have to start working while you’re still laid up. If that’s the case, I highly recommend a sit up pillow. I also would suggest a lap desk for bed. I find it extremely difficult to be in chairs and upright at a desk post surgery. It expends a lot of my energy. If I can do it from bed, I’m going to do it from bed. Prepare for that scenario, if it’s applicable to you.
I’m sure there are tons of things I’m leaving out. Surgery in general is somewhat difficult to prepare for. All of them are difficult in their own ways. After my gallbladder was removed, I was in horrid pain for days. While I was in bed post neurostimulator, I played a lot of Animal Crossing. For my recent hip surgery, I relied on working on homework from bed and watching Tik Tok. There are certain things you can do to prepare but it will likely be a unique experience. Give yourself a lot of grace.
I hope you’re having a great day. I hope your day is filled with joy, positivity, and laughter. I hope you find peace, love, and happiness.