It’s the second installment of the Trevor May MLB Trade Rumors experience y’all, let’s get to it! (Those who missed the first one can check it out here.) Before I get into the meat of my “week of woe” post-surgery guide, let me start with some good news:
- I was on a mound the other day! Well, kind of. No arm motions yet, but footwork was on point. And, as you can imagine, I looked cool as hell.
- Those boys in Minnesota can play some baseball! Two games over .500 and right in the division hunt. As someone who is able to witness the combination of talent, work ethic and character on a daily basis, take my word when I tell you that special things are happening.
Moving on! Anyone who has had major surgery knows that life is a little bit more difficult when you wake up. Tommy John is no exception. There’s a lot that you may already assume, like “everything hurts,” pain meds that leave you loopy, and leaving in wheelchairs. (I’m sure many of you are imagining this.)
Tommy John surgery, the gift that keeps on giving, checks all of these boxes, but there’s plenty you may not know. For example, the first location for the IV was my hand. This did not work. Ten minutes on the table, my hand is already swollen. When I woke up from surgery on March 20 in my woefully under-sized hospital gown (no, I won’t prove it), the nurse asked me how I feel.
“Yeah my arm is sore, but my knee is KILLLLLLLLING ME!”
Medical context (Warning: I am not a doctor and am only 40% sure that I’ve accurately spelled the words in the following paragraph. Time to test the surprisingly friendly MLBTR editors!):
In order to repair your ulnar collateral ligament, the ligament must be replaced by another healthy piece of connective tissue from somewhere else in your body. Commonly, the tendon used is from one of your wrists. Unfortunately, some of us don’t possess that option. Like me. Option two then becomes a harvest of your gracilis tendon, which wraps from the front of your knee to the hamstring. I’ve been told it regenerates to some extent, like a salamander’s tail. Cool!
Well folks, NOT cool. The knee is far and away the suckiest part of the surgery. I fancy myself a tough hombre, but being rendered unable to move myself was new. No stair is easy, no car is accessible, no bed is comfortable.
So, having had the experience, I’ve designed my own guide to Navigating Life Post-Surgery: When Your Right Arm and Left Leg Don’t Work.
- Brushing your teeth. Invest in a Sonicare or some other type of electric toothbrush and practice using it for some time before surgery.
- Showering. You’re not allowed to get your incisions wet, so invest in a nice, high-quality roll of plastic wrap and trash bags. (Glad works well and smells nice! *Thumbs up*) Also, it helps to have a low expectations for what you’re going to be able to reach. Just do your best.
- Stairs. Try not to count them. Just take it one step at a time, leading with your immobile leg. The good leg is better for pushing off. This applies to descending stairs as well.
- Putting on Socks. Well, I cheated. My wife did it for me. Invest in slip-ons that don’t need socks (New Balance makes some solid options). As always, take your time.
- Combing/Styling your hair. I have two new hats. Lululemon to the rescue.
- Eating. Chopsticks are out, anything handheld is in. This might have been the best part. Seriously, I had Culver’s like, six times.
Note: If you know anyone at these companies, I know a guy that is fairly shameless and loves making commercials. *Wink*
These six things, approached correctly, keep life moving right after surgery. Here I am, 13 weeks out, typing all of this out a full speed (24 words per minute). Heck, I ran for 30 minutes yesterday! Improvement is a daily phenomenon, and the process is in full swing. One finally-not-so-painful step at a time.
Let me finish with a short off-field update. I’ve recently formed two companies that are going to revolutionize E-Sports analytics. I’m also working to build several tournament series for competitive gamers to begin increasing their income, and I have several charity events planned involving both gaming and baseball! On the charity side of things, the next step will be a live-streamed marathon of MLB: The Show, where I challenge five players to take on me and the Twins! More details on that are here for those that are interested.