Well, the time has finally come. This is likely my last column for a few weeks, as surgery draws nigh.
I say “likely” because I’m a control freak and I might try to slip one more in before I’m incapacitated for a bit.
You might notice the layout of the paper changing a bit in the near future, as Mary Beth and Jim will share the duties that I normally hog (not that they can’t do it, but, again, I’m a bit of a control freak).
They’ll be fine. If there are any issues, it falls on me, as I didn’t give them enough time to get up to speed on using our layout program, InDesign.
I grudgingly give up this column space too. Mary Beth, who has put up with me for 25 years of marriage, is more than willing to step forward to fill the space. She’s dealt with me writing about her for years, so it’s payback time.
Many of our friends are likely laughing as they read this. I look forward to her columns. I’ve earned the payback.
But, rest assured, I will write about the hip replacement surgery. Not the gory details. I learned my lesson when I once wrote in too much detail about a colonoscopy. It was useful for folks who were a little worried about getting such a procedure (very important in keeping watch for cancer of the colon), but I learned what TMI (too much information) means. The column was a gas nonetheless.
In terms of my hip, I’m in hospital for about four days, and then home until I feel up to returning to work. I’ll be chained to the office for some time. I think I’m banned from driving for the next six weeks, as well as a lot of other stuff.
In other words, Mary will be very busy as my primary caregiver, partial work replacement, and chauffeur to our child and her frequent dance evenings.
I don’t envy Mary. Even if you took everything else away and she was just my primary caregiver, that would be a challenge.
I don’t know how she puts up with me as it is. Add in some serious pain and some whacked pain meds, and I’m sure I’ll be a real treat.
She’ll have to channel her biblical Job to deal with this ogre.
At least she’ll have the column to let folks know how “fun” I’m being at home.
I’ll be using a walker for the first while just to get around the house. Stairs will be a challenge, something I won’t try without people on hand to aid me.
I can access everything I need on the main floor of the house. All I have to do is bring the video game console I use upstairs and set up a laptop for me to make use of temporarily.
But I’m off barbecue duty for some time after this weekend, because the Big Green Egg is down three stairs (and let’s face it, I don’t see myself standing in front of the barbecue with my walker, flipping steaks).
I hope to shuffle out on the front porch on nice days, however, as there is only a slight step down, and we have a nice rocker loveseat out there. I’ll really look the part of cranky old man with my walker (or even a cane later) nearby. That’s OK, I always saw myself in such a mode when I got older.
But until I get sliced, I’m going to be busy. Some yardwork preparation, such as getting the air conditioner ready this week, is in my immediate forecast. A last big laundry weekend looms as well. Ditto for some house cleaning (I need nice, wide, clear paths for my walker). And I’ll keep the Egg stoked, cooking up some meat to freeze for easy meals when I’m incapacitated.
I can’t wait, yet I am nervous. Odd, but true. It’s major surgery, and likely a major fix to a seriously compromised lifestyle.