I don't post often here anymore, but there was a time when I came here everyday, multiple times a day. Today I'm posting to share a positive happening and hopefully remind those who read and are dealing with knee problems that there are good outcomes to be had.
In Oct 2009, I got on a plane bound for TX to have surgery with Dr. Mark Sanders at the Sanders Clinic. I had derotational osteotomy on my femur and tibia to correct femoral anteversion and excessive tibial torsion. I also had a TTT to correct patella alta. I won't bother with my whole story, my threads are here for anyone interested in the back story. The summary is: pain and instability since age 9 that had gotten so bad I couldn't take even a few steps without subluxing. With the help of people here, I was able to learn about the PF joint and what a thorough examination entails, and ended up talking to and traveling to the best of the best to get a good diagnosis (one that eventually debunked everything I had been told by many different local doctors) and eventually have surgery.
I'm like 2.5 years post op now and have been running and jumping and doing pretty much anything I want to do. This weekend marked a pretty cool moment for me in my bowling career. For those that don't know, I've been a competitive bowler since about age 16, competing nationally in a variety of events as a junior and amateur bowler.
So this weekend I was hanging out and bowling with some professional bowlers and higher-ups that work for arguably the best bowling ball company right now. They were in town for a event for wounded veterans in the area. My husband is a staff member for this company and they also sponsor the tournament organization he and I run.
After the event was over, we were hanging out and bowling. None of them had ever seen me bowl before.
After I threw some balls they all kind of got the dropped jaw look and kept complimenting me on how good my game is. Not that I haven't received compliments from professional bowlers before, because I have, but these compliments meant a lot more to me, as they are the first real accolades I've received since returning to bowling after the surgery. Bowling is just like any other sport, it takes practice and it isn't something you can just stop doing for a few years and pick up where you left off. I've struggled quite a bit this year in my first full season back bowling competitively, so having those guys think so highly of my game despite the apparent rust was awesome. It was also good exposure for me as there are great possibilities that can come from exposure like this. There are no women in this area that are endorsed individually by this ball company, so getting exposure like this with that brass is huge.
I couldn't help think about how not too long ago I was sidelined from activities period. My promising basketball career was shelved in college due to my knees. Before the surgery, I couldn't even bowl, go on photography hikes, or just take a walk around the neighborhood anymore. Now I am playing basketball and bowling competitively again. With the pain and instability I was dealing with before going to the Sanders Clinic, I could never have bowled on it, let alone showcased my skills in front of a 14-time PBA title holder and ESPN commentator and both the head ball designer and VP of the best ball company in the game right now.
I'm still a work in progress at improving my bowling game to get back to where I was and eventually be even better, and there is still the other leg to deal with, but I am active and able to do the things I love. I don't worry about being able to run behind some kids if I ever have any. I don't really worry about my knee (at least the left one anyway), when I do things. I don't even think about the surgery I had on it anymore. I just live.my.life.
So there it is. Even though in the thick of it, it feels like it might never be over, with an educated patient and a skilled surgeon (or maybe PT or some other type of professional), you can give yourself a good chance of having a positive outcome. I remember thinking at one point while trying to get a diagnosis that I would be happy just to walk normally. After getting in touch with the right people to help me out, though, I soon began to feel like more was possible. I started pushing for more and demanding more and searching for the answer till I found more. I'm quite pleased with where I've ended up and I have a solid cast of special folks to thank for that.