Monday, September 27, 2010

One Month Down...

Hey guys,
Sorry for the big gap between entries. It has been a tough first month. Especially being away from the guys while they are on the road. I have been staying here at home doing my physical therapy and basically living on the couch waiting for the game to start on TV.  It's a lot tougher watching the games on TV rather than being there in person. Being the competitor and teammate that I am, you can understand how I feel about not being able to be there.

We have had a tough roadtrip, and the season really is coming down to the last few days, which is what everybody expected. But I have all the faith in our guys as well as the new guys that have been thrust into this playoff-style atmosphere with no major league experience. Brandon Beachy and Mike Minor have really stepped into a tough situation, but if I know the Braves' organization, I know they found quality guys that will help us put up some wins to help us grab a spot in the playoffs.   

Today marks 40 days since my surgery. I was able to get my brace off at 30 days, which has been an awesome step in this journey. It was so bulky and I hated sticking out in a crowd just doing daily errands. I already have full range of motion and my arm is feeling pretty good. Even when you are 100% you feel about the little things, but when you're injured, some of the smallest things can sting. Opening doors, shaking somebody's hand, and high fiving in the dugout sometimes catch me off guard. Overall though, I am really happy with the progression so far.  When it comes to the physical therapy part, I drive 30 minutes up Peachtree Industrial Blvd to Gwinnett Medical Center and Sports Rehabilitation.  Lloyd (Atlanta Braves PT) works alongside Brian and Collin to help people recover from surgeries like mine as well as knee, hip, and other injuries everyday people experience. Every day that I show up, seeing autographed photos on the wall of athletes such as Tom Glavine, John Smoltz, Tim Hudson, Mike Gonzalez, Octavio Dotel and many others gives me the confidence in knowing that this process works. SO many of those guys went through surgery and continued to have many unbelievable years afterwards.  I think being as young as I am really helps in this situation. Knowing how much work and effort it took to fulfill my dream of playing major league baseball helps me realize the kind of work that I will need to put into this rehabilitation. But the people I have in my corner will make me that much stronger through the recovery process.

I think at 4 months, once i get a baseball in my hand, it will help speed up the process and help me see the light at the end of the tunnel.  In the meantime, I need to stay positive and try to help the team in any way that I can.  Looks like my cheerleading career has reached an all-time high! 

Thanks for all of the support and I appreciate your comments on my last blog entry. It makes me feel good knowing that I have people who understand the difficult situation I am in.  

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Week One...

8 days today. It feels like it’s been a month since my surgery. This has been the longest week of my life. I am a high-energy type of guy. I am used to always doing something, staying busy and most of all, playing baseball. I guess I have to adjust to a whole lot of nothing whether I like it or not. My life is not near as exciting as it was 2 weeks ago. It’s basically been a whole lot of laying around.

I look like a mummy…. And I could smell like one too. Can’t get the arm and leg wet yet. Have you ever tried to shower without getting your right arm and left leg wet??? I won’t go into to many details, but the kitchen sink is good for more than just washing dishes!

The pain is surprisingly not too bad. Not in my arm anyways. Maybe it’s because I can’t really move it. What does hurt is my knee and leg! It’s a weird pain in my left leg, kinda numb down the shin and around my ankle. Other guys say it’s normal and so does the doctor. Something about the nerves taking time to recover from the surgery too.

One of the hardest things is that for the first time in a long time I can’t be with my team and hang out with my teammates. I know that I will be able to soon enough, but I guess it is true: you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone. I would even go through hazing again and wear a “My Little Pony” backpack to be sitting back in the bullpen, on the bench in the dugout or hanging out in the locker room. Soon enough.

Soon, I get to take of this soft cast and start doing full arm exercises. The Physical Trainer, Lloyd, and I will be spending a lot of time together. I’m sure I will be talking about more of that soon. I am ready to start this rehab and get back to playing. These weeks and months without playing ball are weeks and months too long. I was ready last week to be back.

The one good thing about having surgery is all of the great food. Homemade food from friends, and I have to give it up to Jordan over at the Palm restaurant for hooking me up. PF Changs was awesome too! Thanks to all of you guys!

I might post some pictures of this scar pretty soon…