07 February, 2007

Surgery... Again.

Chuck Ziegenfuss (the inspiration for Valour-IT) is facing his 34th surgery next week. It's hard to imagine that many surgeries on one person.

It's been about 18 months since his hands were severely damaged by an IED and he's been long back on the job, but he's still hip-deep in reconstruction and recovery. This latest surgery (and the one set to follow) are of the reconstructive type, which means more pain and a temporary set-back in functionality of his hand, with subsequent hard work in Occupational Therapy (OT) to get it back:

OT is hard. OT hurts. OT is vitally necessary to build hand strength and flexibility. When I say it hurts, it isn't just the 90 minutes of pain inflicted on me at the OT clinic. I hurt for the next day or so, until I have another appointment, and we inflict more pain.

I used to eat fentanyl [painkiller] lollipops during OT, but my days of heavy narcotics are (thankfully) passed...I guess one of my biggest worries is taking truckloads of meds for the pain, and then having to titrate off of them again. Titration blows goat. However, I have done it several times...

It sounds like he's starting to psyche himself up for the battle ahead. Why don't you drop by his place and let him know you've got his back through it all?