I have a severe tear in my left rotator cuff and tendon/muscle are detached from the bone. I was referred to a shoulder specialist connected with Shepherd Spinal Center. This surgery will leave me without a working limb and trunk control is minimal. I never realized how much I use my arms for balance until pretending to have the left arm in a sling. Before the new year, the plan was to have surgery and a 3 night hospital stay followed by two-three weeks rehab and then skilled nursing facility which I have learned is a nicer way of saying nursing home. We spent 3 days this week at Shepherd Spinal Center learning how to use Hoyer Lift, bathroom options, positioning in bed, ordering a power chair and more. For weeks I will be completely dependent on someone for care, even to be fed.
This has been so difficult to deal with. It has taken me back to 1980 and all the feelings I thought I had forgotten or shoved away, have resurfaced with panic attacks at night. Moving with the shoulder pain can be terribly painful so I have the feeling of being stuck. It helps to have Jeff help me up and just move around the room or my house when this happens.
On Wednesday I found out that insurance will send me home after surgery. I will have to be placed in and out of the car with a Hoyer Lift and Jeff hasn’t been cleared to lift, bend or twist from his lumbar fusion. The doctor will not release me to a nursing home because he feels they will tear my shoulder. We were hoping Shepherd would accept me to heal and start rehab when possible but criterion for insurance is 3 hours of rehab a day which Shepherd can not provide because of the need to heal before rehabbing the rotator cuff. I need an exit plan to even have surgery. That means a family member who is trained and family/friends and hired care givers to attend me for 12 weeks.
It is absurd to think insurance expects a C-5/6 quad to come home without a working limb. I can not even imagine the inability to move without the aid of someone. I know I was there 38 years ago, but I was very sick and so young. It is different, but the same in so many ways.
This is deeply personal and not something I wanted to put on Facebook, but it’s the easiest way to update friends and also ask for resources. If anyone in the Newnan area knows any CNA’s, please let me know. If you are a Medicare/Tricare For Life expert, I need your help. Thank you for your calls, texts and messages. I am always thankful for my family and the best friends that are way above and beyond friendship. You are family and I treasure every one of you.