A four-hour trip with my hip….

As most of you are aware, a couple of weeks ago, I had a left hip replacement. Of course, recovery and rehab have kept me out of touch with all of you and for that I am sorry. However, I would like to give you some idea of how everything went. Rather than a long, tedious recitation, sure to bore you, I thought maybe a chronological list of events would be shorter and more interesting.

Tuesday, July 17th:

4:45am: I grudgingly awaken to be at hospital by 6:00am.

4:50am: I get in the shower and groggily try to follow the special hospital instructions for the “morning of the surgery” shower. Regular soap for face and private parts, a medical soap for the rest of the body. Regular washcloth for first part, hospital issue washcloth for the second part. I’m totally confused but then so are the germs, I guess. Maybe that’s the idea.

5:45am: I reluctantly leave the house. I promise Patty that I will repair the finger nail scratch marks I left on the door jamb as she “eased” me out.

6:05am: I hobble reluctantly into hospital and I am immediately put in room with several other masochists who, in a sad moment of pain and weakness, agreed to lend out their bodies to be mutilated by an almost total stranger.

6:25am: My name is finally called and I am escorted into a pre-op ready room with a sign above it saying “Abandon ye now all hopes of modesty, all who enter within.”

6:30am – 7:00am: Vigorous efforts are made to return my body to its womb-like state, via scrubbing, washing  and disinfecting. Now void of any evidence of earlier contact with the outside world, I am considered “prepped.” I’m given an IV solution to make me more relaxed. I counter by spouting my litany of corny doctor/surgery jokes to pre-op nurse, who diplomatically tells me that even after hearing them for the 20,000th time, they are still hilarious.

7:00am – 8:00am: A  conga line of new strangers enters the room, giving me their title and what part they will play in the surgery. I ask the head surgical nurse if they are running a “two-fer Tuesday” special and can I get the second hip replaced at half price. She doesn’t even smile and mumbles something about her poor career choice. Next, the anesthesiologist runs down a list of rare, but possible, side effects from a epidural block plus sedation, including paralysis, headaches, infection and even death. I agree to the procedure, but remind her my family knows where her family lives and how “payback is hell.” I notice that each time another medical person comes in to greet me, they ask me why I am here. I respond “why, isn’t this the place where sick people come for operations?” I finally tumble that they are just trying to verify which hip I am supposed to get replaced.

8:00am: Having reached a consensus that it is, indeed, the left hip, they begin to wheel me out and down toward the operating rooms.

8:02am: I assure head nurse that as soon as I repair the finger nail marks on the door jambs at home, I will be back to fix the ones I left in pre-op.

8:05am: I arrive in a massive operating room where I look around for evidence of the saws and drills, but alas, they have been deviously hidden from my view.

8:07am: I am asked to sit up on the edge of my bed. A young intern walks up to me and hugs me. He tells me is steadying me while they work on the epidural block in the back. He’s really hugging me tight now and just as I begin to ask him if he thinks our age difference will be a deal-breaker down the road, my lights go out.

10:00am: Voila!!

38 thoughts on “A four-hour trip with my hip….

    • Thanks, D.S. Glad you appreciated the humor. It was kind of a “gallows humor” blog because I was pretty anxious throughout the ordeal. On the way over to read your blog….

  1. Just like magic!
    Glad to hear you’re up and around!! Surgery is always a bit scary.

    I don’t know if you can go back to your old site, but I would include a link to this site in your last post.

    • Thanks for the suggestion, Susie. I’ll see if I can do that. Look for me soon at an airport near you. I’ll be the one holding up everyone in the security line.

  2. You’ve got a gift, to make something that had to be painful sound so funny. How’s the recovery going? Must be odd for an active young sprout like you to feel like an old guy, but it’s only temporary, right? Then you’ll be Bionic Al and even better than ever!

    • Hi, Peg. Glad you found your way to comments. Yes, I may be humorous for the time being, but just wait until they take my pain meds away from me!

      Seriously, recovery and rehab hasn’t been too bad and my progress has even the physical therapist amazed . My only gripe is that doing the simplest things leaves me very tired and longing to get back into bed. I’ll be cleared for riding in a car tomorrow and by the 15th (my doctor follow-up) I might even be driving again. They say the more active you become, the more energy you will have. Go figure.

      • Friends and family discount? If you look closely at the upper right side of your x-ray, you can see a scalpel that was accidentally left inside. Better get it checked out, ASAP.

  3. Great attitude, Al! With all the friendly comments here, I’m sure you might even find recovery fun! Be well! –Gail

  4. Aww Al, you make me laugh! I can imagine you being wheeled into surgery and scanning the room for saws!! Glad all’s ok, and hope you are healing well.
    Take care
    Your blogging friend,

    • Much thanks, Garfield. So far I am following instructions. I’m now pretty sure my wife has some drill sergeant blood in her family line!

  5. So good to hear your surgery went well & that your sense of humour was not lost as a side effect of the medication used to put you out! 🤪. Now the physio begins! Follow that physio’s regime to get you back to moving & grooving!

    • Hi Lynn. Yes, surgery went fine and rehab is also progressing well. I’m doing the required exercises religiously and it is paying off. Looking forward to getting back to gabbing again with you and all my cyber-buddies!

  6. So relieved to hear from you, my Bro. I have been wrapping you in healing love and will continue to do so. I hope you are being a very good patient for Patty and your order of ‘play’ is hilarious. Hugs, of the soft kind. xX ❤

    • Thanks for all the good vibes sent my way. They were much appreciated. And also the gentle hug, as still a bit sore you know. Patty has been saintly, wouldn’t even attempted this without her in my corner.

    • Thanks, Ralph. You’ve given me an idea. Maybe I will take up kick-boxing now. Can you imagine my opponent’s shock when he first feels the wrath of my titanium hip?

  7. Hilarious as always, and informative. I am in the middle of making friends with an arthritic right shoulder and I imagine, one day, if the need for medical attention is not obliterated by my appetite for unhealthy food, and sitting down while reading health-driven magazines, I may go through a similar experience. Groan

    • Thanks, Peter. Take good care of that shoulder! We don’t want to miss out on any of those posts! Good writers are not allowed to take time off.

  8. I don’t know that we ever got around to repairing the the nail scratches in our door jams . . . So glad you are up to being humorous about all of this! My doctor visited me and signed my hip (left) prior to surgery – he was wearing a Hawaiian shirt as I recall.
    Recovery took its time, but dear friends sent flowers and one (a nurse) even spent the first night with us which was a good thing because it took forever for Marc to get my pain meds from the pharmacy. Six years later and most days I forget that I have a titanium hip except when I go through metal detectors. It’s fun to be special! Looking forward to hearing about the remainder of your recovery! Much love from the Left Coast!

  9. Well I am glad to see the surgery did not cut out your sense of humor Al, well done! I’m glad you got it over with and am wishing you a speedy recovery. Time to get healthy so you can start patching up all those door jambs..;)

    • Thanks, Tricia. Have missed all my cyber buddies! I think week three promises even better things rehab-wise. I’m already off a walker and using just a cane.

  10. So glad to hear you are recovering well Al. I read this out loud to my husband and he just sat there nodding with a huge grin on his face. I have a feeling it brought back a lot of memories of his two hip surgeries.
    Also so glad you are back!

    • Glad the hubby enjoyed the post too. I’ll bet he did his hips without all the need for attention and pity like me. Most farmers I’ve known don’t allow any time for menial things like pain. Honestly, how long before he was right back up on a tractor?

      • Laughing now Al….you do know farm guys. My husband had his first hip done in August of 2016. About three weeks after he “confessed” that he had crawled up on a tractor to see if he could push the clutch in with his fixed hip! Two months after he was on a hay rack ….. for a very short time as I made him get off and drive tractor instead. I was grateful our son came to help bale so I had reinforcements on that one!
        I have a feeling it might be a guy thing???

  11. Thank you for the story. Only you could tell it like that. I just wonder why these surgeons can’t come up with a better time. Don’t they know we like sleeping? What’s wrong with 2pm? Good Luck Al…and keep up with your pt exercises. I expect a lot of humorous blogs from now on…while recuperating!

    • Hi Cindy Lou. I guess doctors figure that if you are crazy enough to get up that early, you must not mind pain that much. Hmmmm.

    • Thank you, Janet. Cyber friends like you were very supportive and a big help in preparing. Rehab is going extremely well.

  12. One of the best accounts of hip replacement I have ever heard of from anyone! At least not you can laugh at it! It seems all my friends are having them. I’ll continue to pass for now. Good luck on the recovery!

  13. Al,

    I am so happy you have reported in! Your chronology is hilarious. Hope you’re feeling better and being a good patient for Patty.

    Nice photo!

Your turn to write, but please don't be wittier than me. My ego is quite fragile.

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