Friday, October 05, 2007
Not for the Faint-Hearted
If you're squeamish, feel free to keep moving. If you'd consider yourself amongst the rubber-neckers on the roads (you don't have to admit it here) you might be intrigued by all this. If you enjoyed reading of my colonoscopy, you'll love this one!

I had my appointment with the orthopaedic specialist today. I'd seen him in late May, gotten cortisone shots in both knees (not as bad as I thought it would be), and promptly headed home to finish planting all the flowers in the yard. That night, washing mud off the bandaids on my knees, I was amazed how great they felt. And no, they didn't get infected in spite of the mushroom manure in the flowerbeds!

Five months later, after mowing, and staining the deck, and weeding those flowers, and removing wallpaper, etc. etc. the knees were trashed. So today was "aspiration and injection" day. Hang with me, I can show you how to have a good time.

The needle looked a lot like a chopstick. He warned me, told me, don't look, and made me lie back so I could not see (I guess he knew I'd peek.) In went the jab, out came the fluid, and down the chopstick shaft he shot cortisone. Hurt like a son-of-a-gun! So much fun we repeated it on the left side. He took 60 cc or 2 ounces of fluid out of the right, and 90 cc or 3 ounces out of the left. He told me there was more in the left but it would be too painful to go after it. I do think it's fair to keep the pain below the childbirth level since you don't get to bring home a sweet little bundle after the ordeal. So 5/8 of a cup of fluid out of my knees. I was shocked. I expected a tablespoon or so. No wonder they hurt and resembled small canteloupes.

I'm real and upfront so I've added pre-appointment photos of my oh so lovely fluid-filled, freckle-covered knees. I'm not gross though, so I'll spare you the vials from the appointment. You can use your imagination for that one. I really considered asking him if I could take them home to show my husband, but couldn't muster enough nerve. I do think he would have been darned impressed, and it's hard to gross out males. My daughter, Sarah pointed out something about body fluids and hazardous waste - I didn't think about that. I do wish I'd taken a picture for posterity. I'm not planning a repeat performance.

That lump on my right knee is not a protruding bone. It's a gap that was left from knee surgery a long time ago, the way it healed left room and fluid filled it up. Looks pretty creepy though.

The doctor gave me several options. Knee replacement is not one - I'm still too young. #1 I can stop doing what makes me happy. #2 I can change the way I do things. #3 I can come in every six months to pay the price for not living in moderation. He didn't advise one over the other, rather told me I have to decide what I can live with. Ummm... it took about 30 seconds to realize I don't want to do this again, and I'm not willing to give up flowers and projects and even mowing a little grass now and then. It's just the tomboy in me I guess. I also had to realize the cortisone is dangerous for me. Being hardheaded, if something doesn't hurt I don't pay much attention. After those May injections, I just plowed ahead and overdid. All the while my knees were wondering, "crazy lady, what on earth do you think you're doing?" I think I need the safety of some pain when I'm pushing too hard.

So - I choose option #2 - live smarter. Use a mop instead of my knees and a rag on the kitchen floor. Mow one section rather than all of the lawn. Hire someone to remove the lower wallpaper. Use a gardening cart to plant the flowers, because I honestly can't imagine living without flowers, and I enjoy them more knowing I planted them to begin with. The picket fence paint job - we'll see. Maybe a teenager and I can do it together.

Christ told us He came that we might have life, in abundance. To me at least part of that means flowerbeds overflowing, the smell of freshly cut grass, fresh paint now and then, and a clean kitchen floor, the work of my hands. I think He also mentioned wisdom here and there throughout Scripture. The Proverbs 31 woman "looked well to the ways of her household", she didn't necessarily do it all herself. Her hands were busy, but sometimes that was spinning, not scrubbing. And yes, I already know she didn't mow grass. But we don't have a goat or sheep. Option #2 - a combination of the two - living life to the fullest while using the good common sense He gave me. By jove, I think it's just the ticket!

  posted at 8:00 AM

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    Girl Raised in the South

    I have a deep, abiding love for full octane coffee, sewing, knitting, quilting, reading, cooking, gardening, God and my family - not in that order.

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