How do you give your brilliant, Mayo clinic orthopedic surgeon a heart attack?
It's very simple. Cross your legs for ten minutes before he comes into the exam room, (hey, doctors' offices are so boring) then put both feet on the floor when he knocks. Enjoy the horrified look on his face when he sees the huge cherry red "infection" covering your enormous knee scar--a reemergence of what he just barely removed. Hahahahaha. Still laughing, although it was not an intentional fake-out. He says the knee is doing great (although he kept kind of trying to rub the red off to make sure it was just temporary) and that I need to be doing a lot of hiking and biking this summer to keep it worked out while the scar tissue is deciding what it's gonna do. So, who's up for a trip to Moab?
Physical therapy has been fine except for the time away from home. I was a little worried since everyone seems to have horror stories about it (my Dad asked me if the therapist had made me cry) but so far the hardest thing I've had to do is push myself around on a wheely stool backwards with my bad leg. You want to know the other hard thing? I don't know proper PT protocol. Or even the right vocabulary ("wheely stool?") It's embarrassing. For example, they bring me in and seat me at this padded folding table thing in the row of padded folding table things in this big gym room. I'm supposed to wait there until someone attends to me. Then one of the underlings comes and works on my knee with an ultrasound wand(?) roller(?) for a bit, then they hook me up to electrodes(?) shocker wires(?)
They always seem to want to know what I'm in for. I guess everyone shares battle stories (sometimes it's fun to eavesdrop on the people on the tables next to you). I feel equal parts sheepish and semi-private about my injury (no one wants to touch someone who's been infected, and I'm probably the only one there with a mere flesh wound), but everyone seems to want to hear about it because it's so crazy. I've stopped bringing my phone with the pictures because it's getting a little weird to be flashing my hairy legs and frightful rash at gawking strangers. Oh, here's the other thing. What am I supposed to call these people? No one told me. They aren't nurses. "Oh Underling! I need my ice!" probably wouldn't go over very well. "Attendant?" "Tech" perhaps? But that sounds like a geek squad computer person.
They also vacuum.
They also seem to regularly ask what I am reading, which is sort of annoying if you'd rather be reading than explaining to a stranger what you are reading. I think they are bored. So yesterday when the nice Underling girl asked me what I was reading I took pity on her boring job and said, "You know, I don't even remember what it's called. It's a mystery but it's kind of dry so I think I am going to stop. How about, instead, I will tell you what I've been researching today. (Insert wicked laugh here.) Have you ever heard of the Patriot's War?" She had. (I was secretly shocked, because I had only learned about it that morning, and I tend to think I'm pretty hot stuff when it comes to random historical facts. I get it from my Dad.) So for the next ten minutes I reviewed my findings, including death by cannonball to one of my ancestor's brothers, the secret takeover attempt of Canada, the dumping of a ship over Niagara Falls (she knew that part), and the banishment of 200 men, including about 100 Americans, to Australia and Tasmania. I didn't have time to get into the 1832 cholera epidemic.
Mark needs to hire a bored Underling so he doesn't have to listen to me.
Then it was time for the bike, on which I still can't figure out the buttons other than the timer, the leg presses, the bungee cord stretches, and walking backwards on a treadmill (try running the buttons when you are going backward!) They should have come and made small talk during that one because it's super boring. I can't even hold a Kindle. Then the wheelie stool, which is actually the hardest, then I am supposed to go sit back in my spot and wait nicely for the Doctor(?) Therapist(?) Senior Tech(?) I've settled on "Ed", to come and check my flexibility and proscribe more exercises for at home. (Sometimes I wait a long time and wonder if anyone notices that I am done with my exercises, and like I said, who am I supposed to call to attention? "Oh, Nurse?" "Oh, Geek Squad?") Then I get my ice, which is the best part.
I don't tell anyone when they keep referring to my loss of muscle mass, that it probably wasn't there to begin with. Somehow I don't think I'll ever become a "gym rat" (Is that the cool term for person who goes to the gym all the time?) even if with all that inactivity I do need to lose a few "L-Bs."
At home last night I took it easy after the Pack Meeting and Leslie's YW fashion show, and had my knee up icing it, per doctor's (?) orders. Mark, Leslie and I were watching American Idol. She watches it with us occasionally while the other kids are in bed. I think Mark probably thinks the two of us are hilarious. We "jinx" each other the entire time, saying the exact same thing in reaction to the exact same pieces of music, in the same tone of voice. A little disconcerting. I'm not bringing her on my date tonight. I want to be original when I am telling my husband fascinating things.