Moving with purpose

If success begets success, I’m on a roll!

I am really beginning to believe that by the time my son turns 1 my diastasis symphysis pubis, the seven months we struggled with it before surgery and recovery will be behind us completely.

As I walked into physical therapy today, I wasn’t thinking about my pelvis at all. As I got out of the car and strolled — wide steps, arms moving — up to the door I thought about what a person who saw me in the parking lot may think. Do I look like someone who didn’t have an injury at all? In my own head I’m almost there, but I know I can get stronger. I’m working to get stronger every day.

And I’m lucky to have Amy on my team. She knows her stuff and she’s easy to talk to. And she does what she says. At our first appointment she said she would push me if I was honest with her about how things felt. Today, Amy really challenged me today and although I feel a little stiff I don’t feel hurt or injured in any way. The best part: My husband and my son were there to see most of it.

After stretching my legs and talking through and modifying one exercise that was causing a pull on my left side of the symphysis pubis, Amy lead me through a series of exercises. I will explain them here, but I will say again, if you have an injured pelvis please don’t use this as a guide. This program was designed for my specific case by a licensed physical therapist to rehabilitate my body after a pelvic reconstruction surgery. (I am 12 weeks and five days post-surgery as I write this.)

  • Standing on one leg I used a machine to push backward with the other leg. I know it was more resistance than last time, but I don’t know what weight. I did at least 10 leg extensions with each leg. It was work because of the resistance but it felt pretty good to be doing that.
  • With a green resistance band loop around my ankles, I took large, wide steps the length of the room and back. This was exciting because last week I used a yellow band and took much smaller steps.
  • With the same resistance band on I walked sideways, in a round dance motion of stepping with one foot and bringing the other foot to match it. This happened in both directions.
  • Amy brought out the blue foam mat that is hard to balance on and challenged me to stand on one leg. This was a first. And it was tough.
  • Then, we did the drill we’ve done the last few times where I stand on one leg and we play catch with a two-pound medicine ball as she walks around me in a half circle.
  • And then we took that one up a notch. I stood on one leg and threw a smaller ball of the same weight at a trampoline. As it bounced back I had to catch it and toss it again. I don’t count, but I did this several times on each leg.
  • Then it got even harder. I stood perpendicular to the trampoline and threw the ball across my body, caught it and repeated.

That’s a lot to pack in to 45 minutes. And these balance exercises are tough for me. My balance wasn’t the greatest before all of this. But every success at therapy makes me want to do more work at home. I will use the Wii Fit games to focus on balance, in addition to my other exercises because I can feel the difference it is making.

Amy also said I could try the Zumba game for Wii that Jeremy got me for my birthday last year. I heard good things about it from friends and I really enjoyed Zumba while I was pregnant so I hoped it would be a great way to get back into shape. Little did I know that moving at all would become so difficult. I consider it a major milestone to be able to open the game’s box during my four-day weekend.

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