What I’ve been waiting for: A brand new…


What I’ve been waiting for: A brand new hip

April 13, 2017 | by Adriana Lombardo

The days leading up to my hip replacement surgery were just as any other days.

Of course, I was nervous because this was my first surgery. I didn’t know what to expect or how I would feel, but I made sure to keep myself busy prior to the date of surgery. I made plans with friends, I made lunch dates with my sister, and made sure to get done anything that I thought to be important to me prior to going into the hospital – yes, that included shopping!

On Friday March 31 I was scheduled for a 1PM total left hip replacement surgery.

To tell you the truth, I was more excited than nervous on the hours leading up to it because it is something I have been waiting for for what seems like forever to me.

I woke up that morning at 7AM. I showered, made sure everything was in my bag, and watched T.V. until it was time for us to leave.

On our way to the hospital, we picked up my boyfriend who would be there for moral support. The car ride to the hospital was fun because I was cracking jokes to my mom and dad and boyfriend just to lighten the mood. Knowing that I was going into this light-hearted, put them all at ease too and so, they followed my lead.

We arrived at Mount Sinai Hospital at 9:45AM and I went to check-in.

After directing us to the surgical waiting area on the fifth floor, butterflies began to form in my tummy – excitement and nerves all hitting me at once.

The nurse called me in to change my clothes to put on the shabby hospital gown and robe – I was also given blue paper slippers with a matching hair net. It may not have been Prada, but I made sure to model my way back into the waiting room for my parents and boyfriend to see. That sure gave them a laugh!

I met with different teams while I waited. A nurse to give me medication and go over any concerns, anesthesia to explain the spinal freezing they would give me rather than general anesthesia, and the assistant surgeon to explain the procedure. You’d think this would make me more nervous, instead I was more ready than ever by this point.

While we waited, we were taking selfies, laughing, joking, and just being silly.

The nurse even found my sense of humour funny and said sometimes it’s a little too serious back there so it was refreshing to have some joking.

It’s now 1:05PM and I looked at my parents and said, “Well, it doesn’t look like it’s happening today so we can go.”

I was joking, so my mom caught on and said, “Let’s wait five more minutes and then we can go out to eat if no one comes to get you.”

My boyfriend and my dad got a good laugh at us.

Finally, the nurse came in and called me. By this point, it was 2PM. It was time to get this show on the road.

I hugged everyone goodbye and was feeling all gitty inside. I was actually going to do what I have been longing to do.

He led us out of the waiting room and directed me towards a large set of doors that leads to all the different ORs.

My parents and boyfriend were behind me and waited for me to go in. I turned back and gave them the biggest wave and smile as if I was some celebrity.

This is what I’ve been waiting for.

I walked into the OR and immediately I imagined being in an episode of Greys Anatomy: The bright lights, the clean smell of disinfectant, and the colour green…everywhere!

Nurses were prepping materials and so everything was covered so I couldn’t really see what was under each sanitary blanket.

  It wasn’t as intimidating as I had thought it to be.

I actually felt a sense of relief as they sat me up on the table and began to prep me.

They put in my IV and gave me my spinal freezing. That took no time to set in.

Once they lay me down, they put in my catheter and helped me turn onto my side.

There was jazz music playing in the background and I turned my attention over to the anesthetist and asked if that’s what they listen to on a regular basis.

She asked if I had any particular requests, so I asked for the modern hits – Bruno Mars, Katty Perry, etc.

They lowered the music as they began to get ready.

All I remember saying to the doctors was, “Can you turn the music back up please? I don’t care too listen about your weekend plans *giggle*.”

I was given a sedation but it only made me drowsy so I was in and out of it throughout the whole thing.

It was 2PM when I walked into the OR and 2:45PM when they actually began the procedure.  

I remember fully waking up in the recovery room at 4:15PM. I was propped with a bunch of pillows and blankets. I felt cold but the nurses reassured me it was normal.

The surgeon came over to look at my leg and came over to my right side of the bed. He lifted the blanket and had this puzzled look on his face only to realize he had operated on my left.

Because I still had a lot of drugs in me, I said to him, “Are you sure you were there? Are you sure you did a good job?”

He had a good laugh at me talking nonsense. He assured me all went well and that I’d have a speedy recovery to that I asked, “Does that mean I can go to the gym tomorrow?”

He just walked away...the nurse giggled and told me to get some sleep.

One by one my family members came to see me.

At this point, I was fully awake and sitting up in bed. I had fixed my hair and rubbed the sleep out of my eyes.

Of course, I still felt like crap, but I was hooked up to a pump that gave me pain medication when I pushed on the button that looked like I was on Wheel of Fortune.

I was excited to have it over and done with and was just looking forward to the recovery.

By 9PM, the nurse brought me up to my room where my family joined me.

They waited until I was settled in and then kissed me good night. I was told by the nurse to get some sleep because the next day I was to start physio.

I closed my eyes, and in an instant, I was out like a light.




















side effects leukemia

Adriana Lombardo

Life after Leukemia

I’m Adriana, a leukemia survivor who took sickness to fitness. After receiving a total left hip replacement upon completing treatment in 2017, I became a certified Personal Trainer Specialist. I now am a student at George Brown College studying Health & Fitness Promotion. Being a health & wellness enthusiast, I am passionate about helping people live a healthy and active lifestyle. My goal is to help cancer patients and survivors! I want to use my experience and my growing knowledge to share stories, post tips, healthy snack ideas and more. Going through treatment isn’t easy, and finishing treatment isn’t easier. Let me help you find your inner – and outer – strength.