View Full Version : Returning to School?

11-26-2007, 09:14 AM
Hey everyone,

So when I was first told that I had to have surgery on Dec. 12 I completely ruled out any possibility of returning to school on January 9 and for the entire Spring Semester. But now I'm wondering if I should rethink my decision. So I really need some advice from those of you who have had surgery!!

I' ve talked to some of my counselors and they've told me that it's really up to my teachers and how much they will be willing to work with me. The only thing my school would provide is test taking accommodations (like a writer or something...and that I probably won't need.)

So did u guys feel up to returning back to school in such a short period?
What about maybe 6 weeks later, around Jan. 28?
Or, should I enjoy the break and take a full load in the summer?
How hard is it to carry books,etc. 2 months post op?

I'm sorry for the long post, but I have to make the decision to come back or not like today (ASAP)...by the way Im a sophomore at a public university, medium sized campus, and Id have to provide my own transportation.

Sorry for the long POST. Thanks.

11-26-2007, 10:25 AM
Hi Glenda,

While I'm not the voice of experience (yet), I'm in the same boat. I'm a grad student, having surgery on the 3rd, and am planning to go back to class and work on or around January 21st. I think the biggest obstacle, perhaps for you too, has to do with when I am allowed to drive, which isn't something we can predict. It also depends on the kind of support you have at school - you/we wont be able to carry more than 5-10lbs - and how far you would have to walk between classes. Also, consider the length of your classes, and whether or not you will be comfortable sitting for extended periods of time. Will you be in a back brace after surgery?

Personally, I am confident that I will be able to return to classes about 6 weeks after, but also keep in mind that 1) I'll only have one 3 hour class a week and 2) I have rides figured out with friends to and from classes in case I can't drive yet and 3) My work schedule and my graduate program are both very flexible, so if I need accomodations, or can't always make it, it wont be a big deal. Feel free to message me if you want to talk this out further - I know it's a tough decision.

Good luck!!!

11-26-2007, 10:52 AM
I am a sophomore at a public university also, but I am having surgery next summer of '08. Is is possible for you to enroll now and decide when the time comes in January if you are up to taking classes or not? You could then drop your classes if you need to and just take them in the summer. As for the driving thing, I live on campus, although our's is huge so I probably end up walking around a mile or so a day anyways, I'm not sure what would be better... counting on being able to drive or trying to live close and walk (I don't know if that is an option for you). Also, If you don't feel that you could sit through classes, you could look into distance education if your school offers it. Things like online courses, mail courses, etc could work so you would have something to do next spring. If your school doesn't offer it you could see if there was a nearby college that does that credits are transferable from....

just some ideas, hope it helps...

11-27-2007, 12:49 AM
My surgeon told me that I am not to carry or hold anything that weighs more than a pound or two, preferably nothing, for about 6 months after surgery.

Also keep in mind that strong pain medications and focusing (and learning) do not really go well together...you will probably feel sleepy and have not much energy for school work.

I am taking the winter qtr off, my surgery is dec 21, but I will be returning to school in the spring, much more able to focus on my studies. It is just one quarter, it may help you heal faster if you get adequate rest. At most, try just one class, but tell yourself that it is ok to drop it if you do not feel up to it.


11-27-2007, 02:04 AM
hey guys,

thanks for the replies.... after talking with my mom she pretty much decided for me. NO SCHOOL. and I understand and trust her judgment because she was by my baby sister's side throughout her recovery.

I would take one online class....but the only ONE that suits my major is pretty difficult, and I don't want the stress!

thanks again

11-27-2007, 07:32 AM

I think you made the right decision, although everyone recovers differently. I'm in grad school and took 3 months off during the summer. While I'm a little older than you, recovery takes time. I was told that my weight limit for carrying books is about 10 pounds, although I carry a bit more now that I'm almost 6 months out. At 6 weeks though, I'm sure the surgeon will not want you carrying more than a pound or two. My faculty has been very good to me, but even at 3 months, it took some readjusting to go back. In my personal opinion, it is more important to take time to recover well than trying to do too much. Take care of yourself.


11-27-2007, 02:39 PM
I had my surgery when I was in gr. 12 in November (seven years ago this month!), and didn't return to school until the middle of January. All my teachers were really good with organizing take home work, and I did my "easier" courses with less course work in the fall and then resumed with more difficult classes in the spring.

I am glad that you aren't going back right after Christmas, you need to take your time and not rush your healing. Everything else can wait. Carrying books and a backpack was really difficult for me at first, I still rarely wear backpacks or carry much with my front because it seems to put pressure on my back somehow.

Take care of yourself! Lots of rest! :)

11-27-2007, 09:21 PM
I think you made the right decision too. I'm also in college and I'm having surgery in May. My doctor told me I can not go back to school until 3 months post-op and even that may be pushing it. Best of luck with your surgery!