Sunday, February 1, 2015

On the Eve of My Invaliding

Tomorrow morning at 0545 I am to show up at the Anne Arundel Medical Center to exchange what has become an arthritic and painful left hip joint for a new model, one that I hope will fold well into the mid-life overhaul that is ongoing in my 50th year.  A week ago, I stopped taking any pain-easers (Ibuprophen), vitamins, and supplements.  Two days ago I began showering with some manner of antiseptic soap, and swabbing the inside of my nostrils with some ointment which has some benefit not explained to me nor after which did I inquire as to said benefit.  You see, some of you who know me see me as an authoritative little Napoleon wanna-be, which while humorous (to you), causes me only limited angst.  What you don't get is that I am also an exceptionally good order follower, and for the purposes of this operation, the Doctors (and nurses, and physical therapists, and The Kitten) are in charge.
My chair is to the right, with Wolf Blanket/Pillows

The order of events goes something like this--0400 Reveille, 0445 Depart for the hospital, 0600-0800 Pre-op, 0800-1000 Surgery,  1000-1300 Post-Op, 1300-?.  I am told that because of my early surgery, the former GTMO torturers physical therapists will have me "up on my feet" sometime tomorrow evening, and that I will join the "group" physical therapy session at 0830 on Tuesday morning.  There is a second PT session that afternoon, and it is at this point that I hope to have satisfactorily demonstrated the several things necessary to be discharged (PT things, that is.  Obviously, other medical issues have a huge impact).  I'll need to be able to get in/out of a car.  I'll need to get in/out of bed.  I'll need to get in/out of a chair.  I'll need to walk up and down three steps.  Stuff like this.
Command Center to the left of the fireplace

If all goes well, I'll be home late Tuesday afternoon.  If I get up to speed a little slowly, then Wednesday some time.

Yesterday was spent preparing my sickroom, which was previously the beautiful bedroom the Kitten planned and executed during our renovation.  She is wisely escaping to the guest bedroom during the early stages of my convalescence, and I have converted the room to a "chambre de malade" to include moving all the obstacles out of the way, rolling up and removing throw rugs, import of a my "comfy chair" and "Wolf Blanket"  from the ManCave, setup of a card table with a sturdy arm-chair atop which sits my laptop and a single issue Keurig coffee-dog. I will be spending a considerable part of the next two weeks in this room, so I wanted to set it up to accommodate my interests.  Tis a good thing that I have surgery tomorrow, as the setting up of this room yesterday was a bear--the Kitten is on a ski-trip with Kitten #2.  The hip is barking mad at me today.

I have several good books to read, and if things go as they did eight and a half years ago, I'll spend a good bit of time dozing off now and then, which is fine with me.  The physical therapy starts up again Thursday morning and continues for I think four weeks.  Bottom line is pretty much invalided for two weeks, moving slow on a cane for two weeks after that, and then the long slow road back to normal and full activity--I don't know, maybe six months, maybe more.  Won't rush it.

Should you happen to be in the neighborhood, I'll be accepting visitors with enthusiasm, though I will likely be somewhat of a poor host.  I may also be a bit flatulent, as my sister Kelly can confirm from her shift nursing me through the first go-round with this.

Needless to say, if anything goes wrong, you are to carry out your last orders.  You know the rules.


"The Hammer" said...

Having been down this road a few times myself I wish you all the luck in the world and a speedy recovery.
If however something tragic happens (God forbid) I would like your Jag please. No, not so I can have a cool ride and tool around acting the big shot, but as a commemorative to one of the finest, anal-retentive, mildly neurotic Naval officers I have ever known (under five foot seven).
Every minute driving such a fine, luxurious auto voiture will remind me of the exceptional human being that once broke wind in the hand stitched leather upholstery. And after a couple of months, when I sell the thing, I will donate 1, no make that 2% of the proceeds to the Army Navy Club of Washington, DC in the hope they will put up a plaque or something.

NavyAustin said...

Good luck, godspeed and great to listen to your docs. The immediate PT thing threw me for a loop when my dad had this 16 years ago, but once the procedure was explained, the need to get things tightened back up quickly became obvious. The not crossing his legs was the hardest order for him to follow. Here's to your swift and full recovery!

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