I recently went to a Christmas eve church service and alarmed a friend when I kept falling back in my chair as I tried to stand up to sing a carol. It has been 3 months since my knee replacement surgery, but I still struggle to stand up at night when I am tired. At home I solve this problem by putting my hand on the seat of the couch to help push myself up. However, the chair at the church was so narrow that I would have had to put my hand an my friend’s thigh.
During the day I now practice standing up by placing my hands on my thighs to remind my muscles to generate a big contraction. I discovered weakness was not my only problem. One morning I looked down at my feet before standing up and saw one toe farther forward than the other. It is hard to stand up when both feet are not tucked under my body. I still struggle to stand up at night without using my sound hand. But I am determined to find a socially acceptable strategy to stand up that family and friends do not find alarming.