before you get any ideas about some sort of 'sectomy let me remind you that cartilage in your knee is a meniscus, therefore a menisectomy means a removal of some of that cartilage, or in my case a whole lot.
my surgery was Tuesday (20th) and was a straightforward arthroscopy. my cartilage was torn where the repair had been done in 2006. it was a pretty large tear towards the back of my knee and a lot of cartilage had to be removed to make it right. the doc also cleaned up a lot of scar tissue towards the front of the knee so hopefully my range of motion will be even better.
this being my fourth knee surgery I knew what to expect going into it. my recovery so far though has really exceeded my expectations: minimal swelling, no pain (just slight discomfort), great range of motion, not much loss of strength...better than what can be expected. I'm hoping at my two week appointment I'll be cleared for the elliptical or stationary bike.
in trying to make a return to the activities I enjoy (trail running and soccer specifically) I need to realistically consider that I may not be able to return at all. as my doctor said, "you need to remember that you don't have normal knees." I need to be willing to let those things go if necessary if I want to avoid any further knee problems. it's hard for me to accept this but I'm asking God to change my heart. I want to be able to run and play with my little guy as he grows up and do activities that may limit my ability to do that are not worth it. my pride still needs convincing though.
another thing that I've realized is that I have too often just expected my body to be able to do things: climb thousands of vertical feet in a day, run 20+ miles on sketchy terrain, play in soccer games with little rest between, trail racing without training...in all these things I have taken my physical ability for granted. I need to not do this anymore. any return to running/racing needs to be preceeded by conditioning, training, and proper nutritional intake. I've also discovered that my lack of focused core strength has added to the beating on my legs. a good core routine will be started as soon as I'm cleared for it.
so, I'm learning and growing and looking forward to the future.