The Bionic Man

Some of you might be curious about the knees. My opiate addled mind is in no shape to write The Alternative so this is an update/story.

As I visited with people about the coming operation saying “both knees,” jaws dropped. Then with a little thought it occurred to them that one time might be better than two even with double the pain from a bilateral replacement. Yeah, physical therapy hurts but I’ve only heard one person say they regretted having a knee replaced.

The doctor said x-rays indicated the better-looking knee was the one that hurt the most. That made the decision for me.

This was not a conspiracy, but all three kids have come home from various long distances. The handy one put a riser on the toilet. Getting up from a low level is nasty. The bossy one made a schedule for medications. The chip off the old block made us laugh. He brought his computer and two monitors so he could be here and work.

Step by step I’ve become more dependent. Years ago when we first got married I would hear, “I could have brought you that.” Pretty soon, as a favor, I would let her get something for me.”

I miss ringing the bell for the Salvation Army, but seeing the volunteers come out of the woodwork has been encouraging. And I’ve received get-well cards. One of them is from a couple who are first time bell-ringers and are doing four hours. It has a picture of poppies. Hmm, there’s those poppies again. After all these years nothing has been found to be more effective for pain than opiates. Modern medicine has amazing success and yet there’s no common cold vaccine and no pain relief without horrendous risk.

Scheduling and not being able to ring the bell means I can’t fill in mistakes and failures to fill a spot when somebody forgets to show up. Well, I can fail one way or another. We were in the hospital with family when Stacy called and said Buck had the same slot. Thankfully, Dawn took the phone and fixed everything.

The night before the surgery Dawn’s brother, Danny, Dawn, and I were watching an old “Thin Man” movie. Nick and Nora had traveled out of New York to visit Nick’s folks. Old friends occasionally passed by the white picket fence. One of them was particularly excited and said, “Nick Charles! Well cut off my legs and call me Shorty!” I paused the movie (it’s on YouTube) and turned to Danny, “Did he really say that?” Then a few more minutes into the movie I paused it again and said, “They’re gonna do that to me!”

Anyway, no research was involved in this. I sure will be glad to be normal again. I can’t imagine what gets into people to make them want to be impaired all of the time, like this.


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