Surviving Shoulder Surgery...and Slowly Slipping Sanity...
Sorry, I got a little excited with the alliteration.
I have been away from the forum for a while, mostly because I have been away from swimming for over 9 months now (a combination of stress caused by leaving grad school and entering the professional world, and an injury). While 9 months might not seem like a long time to some of you, this is easily the longest break I have had from swimming in over 10 years. Like most people here, swimming is not only my primary form of exercise but also my primary form of stress release (and as if starting a new job, getting injured and needing surgery weren't stressful enough, I have also had to deal with some very serious medical issues with my mother for the past 6 months).
I am currently 7 weeks out from surgery to repair a torn labrum in my right shoulder, and just finished my 2nd week of PT. My range of motion is currently so limited that I struggle to imagine being able to start swimming again anytime in the next 3 months (a thought that has me fairly depressed). On top of that I am starting to have some pain in my left shoulder, and I am afraid that being one armed for the past 7 weeks may have lead me to hurt that one as well ( and I am terrified that I may have to repeat this process with my 2nd shoulder as soon as this one heals up).
Sorry, if that all sounds a bit melodramatic, but the bottom line is I am going out my mind without swimming in my life, and I am currently having a hard time seeing the light at the end of this recovery tunnel. So I was hoping to start a discussion of 2 things:
Similar stories of injury/surgery/recovery with happy endings. Have any of you guys had successful shoulder surgeries and returned to swimming long distances?
Tips/tricks/ideas for keeping your sanity when out of the water for a long time. Are there any hobbies/activities you can suggest that have helped you deal with long breaks from swimming?