I’m a 37 year old male, middle child, and grew up in an active family lifestyle and played many years of sports. I was a soccer fanatic starting at age 5 playing into college. My story started when I had noticeable pain starting around 14 but simply attributed it to hard workouts or some type of groin injuries so it was ignored. At age 24, the pain increased as did the recovery time especially at night and was forced to use meds to help reduce pain. I realized the hip pain endured through the years just wasn’t normal and went for professional advice. Yes, the doc’s wanted to perform the POA due to my age, activity, and prognosis.
However, my wife was pregnant at the time and I just couldn’t take the chance of not providing for my family if surgery went unexpectedly bad. Thus far, I’ve opted to endure the lifestyle changes, the pain, and avoid this risk. I now have three beautiful children but, am limited in our activities; I coach but without much running or kicking, chase the kids in the yard but not for as long as they want me to, and don’t go on long bike rides, or take long hikes into the woods. To date, I believe this is still the right choice though admittedly struggle with this decision during bouts of severe pain (mostly caused when I’ve pushed myself too hard).
Truthfully, my first hurdle was avoiding a deep depression and trying to remain positive. It has been extremely difficult to give up on the active/sports lifestyle but, I know if could be worse (just take a look around to find someone in a dire situation) so I am also thankful and fortunate. More recently, a new concern for me is my diet; Having drastically reduced my exercise is forcing me to take a tough look into healthy eating and weight management. I’m about 25 lbs overweight and feel awful about myself. In the next day or so, I’m planning to try my first ever diet, in an attempt to get back in shape and be happier with myself.
Every six months or so, I scour blogs and treatment sites hoping for a breakthrough or advancement such as longer lasting hip replacement parts but have yet to find what I’m seeking. I’ve decided to endure the pain and ultimately go with the hip replacement option, prolonging it as much as possible. I will note that I’ve never had a dislocation and believe that if/when this happens, that it will quickly drive me to a hip replacement decision. The path forward and priority for me is clear; my family and their future. The scary part of all this is that our children may encounter the same issues and I’m extremely sensitive to any complaints they have. It’s not clear what led to my circumstances and there’s still so much to be learned about this problem. I’ve had my children checked at birth and beyond though I’m very fearful that they too could be confronted with the same challenges we have all faced. Also, I don’t limit them on sports or activity. I’m prayerful that science and technology will provide us all with better options so the decision can be easier and with less sacrifice.
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