Location: Cheshire, Connecticut, United States

devilishly handsome, screamingly funny, overly modest

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Upcoming Pain

Due to abusing my body most of my life (not that way you idiots, I'm talking about sports and stuff) I need to get my knees replaced. My doctor tells me that the new joint can bear my weight the day after surgery, and that my re-hab can take a relatively short time depending on how much effort I will exert and how much pain I can take. My intention is to set the world record for fastest re-hab by a not-to-be-ignored blogger.

I've had knee surgery twice before (they let me keep my old knees those times). My orthopedic guy at that time told me to use crutches for 2 weeks and re-hab for 2 to 4 more. I walked unaided into his office a week later, and after he tested me, was told that the rest of the re-hab was optional. I had a similar experience when a disc was removed from my back, one week and I was ready to rumble.

The reason for the quickness of these recoveries is my seeming lack of susceptibility to pain. My wife's explanation for this ("no sense, no feeling") appears to me to be a bit simplistic and certainly skewed, and how would she know anyway after only a few decades. My daughter points out that pain coming out of a trauma (re-hab) is much more tolerable than that going in. Maybe.

My point of view is that physical pain is ephemeral, while emotional pain seems to last forever. I can take a great deal of bodily pain while barely flinching because I know that at some point relatively soon it's going to stop. When my mother died when I was 32, when my daughter got leukemia at 2 years old, when my best friend committed suicide, when my brother-in-law dropped dead of a heart attack at age 36, these things HURT, and the pain will never completely be gone. On the other hand, physical pain, no matter how excruciating, can be handled by just waiting a few minutes, or some other definable time period. Piece of cake.

That's the reason Colleen's "Looseleafnotes" is so effective. It's been years since her brothers died, but she still feels the pain and makes us feel it. What's a few weeks of re-hab compared to that?

On March 10 I become the bionic man. Hmmm, I wonder what other parts they can replace with steel? Nah, not enough steel around.



Anonymous colleen said...

Hi Bill,
Yes, we are so much more than our bodies, and we can sometimes over-ride how the body feels with sheer will and spirit. But a pain that is felt to the core of one's being is much harder to manage.

Michele hosts a weekend meet and greet. It's a great way to meet other bloggers. Actually, Michele is the reason we met. You know the blogger who came to your class tried the meet and greet and I happened to be next in line and got his blog to visit. I hope that's right. If not look for her name on my sidebar of links.

4:40 PM  
Anonymous blue girl said...

You're right about the differences in pain. I'm sorry you have suffered through the emotional pain that you have.

Although, let me tell you -- I am a huge baby -- and physical pain is not what I am all about. After I had my son -- and before I left the hospital -- they ripped that bandaid off my arm that had held the IV line in place -- and ripped my skin -- and I'm like:

"That does it! This is not for me! Even removing the stupid bandaid was hell!"

Labor. Birth. Bandaids. Not for me.


Good luck with your new knees.


"...not enough steel around."

You kill me.

7:02 PM  

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