In January of this year, I finally met the surgeon at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, and he confirmed total hip replacement - eventually on both sides - was the only option. I'd expected endless waiting lists, and cancelled appointments, but in this instance, the NHS seemed to be in great shape. Arrangements were made for a May procedure.
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My associations with hospitals so far: arrogant professors, misdiagnosis, locked psychiatric wards and the death of close relatives. So Jasper and I woke at dawn, 4. In the pre-operative assessment, I explained to the nurse that I didn't want morphine, or as little as possible. Despite one friend who had the same procedure gleefully telling me he was high as a kite and enjoyed it enormously, I know from experience that most opiates make horribly, feverishly sick.
Just tell them you're allergic else they'll give it to you. It's only popular because its cheap and effective". Jasper and I laughed afterwards at her candid talk, but it was excellent advice and I was given oxycontin instead, a painkiller beloved of many pill-popping Hollywood stars. Me about to be wheeled into theatre. There were a few other surprises in store for us. The admission papers said the left one.
But it had in fact remained undecided after my last consultation. I thought I needed the right one doing more urgently, though both were in a damaged state.
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After tentative discussions, they drew a big arrow in marker pen on my right knee. It's the left leg, right? Did you say right? No the left! Amin, the anaesthetist also popped by before the operation to advise me against a general anaesthetic. You mean the stuff he OD'd and died on? Amin, with a delighted grin: "The very one! It's definitely the case that black humour prevails in hospital settings. Later, Amin did the moonwalk just before he stuck a cannula into my hand. I was pretty high by the time they wheeled me into the operating room, and was conscious long enough to see the head surgeon yawning.
Yep, in retrospect I must have been really high as I didn't panic and it only occurred to me afterwards that he was essentially saying he was knackered and possibly infectious. MJ's propofol took effect, and I remember nothing else until I woke up in the operating room, to see the assistants scrubbing down.
Shivering from the effects of the epidural, they gave me a 'bear blanket' a kind of inflatable thermal device to keep warm, left me in the recovery room and then half an hour later wheeled me back onto the ward. Whereupon I was greeted by an elderly lady with a mischievous glint in her eye. Slightly off timing but it was a good joke, I have to give her that. No shit, Sherlock. So I contented myself with just imagining the letter:. Dear ….
Cranio-sacral therapy. Bowen therapy. Chinese medicine aka 2 months of brewing putrid herbs and holding my nose to drink them, three times a day. Pilates and Yoga: Hatha mmm…nice…lots of lying down , Hatha Flow a bit less lying down , Kundalini white robes, enjoyably trippy Sanskrit chanting , Bikram yoga in a sauna , Iyengar yoga with mystifying straps and wooden blocks.
Feldenkrais Therapy apparently, each of my legs represents my relationship with my respective parents.
Cue weird lucid dreaming, lots of weeping, but no long term pain relief. Helmut later calls me to sing me a song on his guitar recounting our treatment session. Dietary exclusions: wheat, dairy, sugar, fermented products, mushrooms, tomatoes, chocolate, orange juice, juicing. Thanks for your concern. Proof: Yoga in the Chicken Shed, Ibiza. Sure, it's not perfect. Sometimes it takes time for a nurse to respond to a call bell.
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Sometimes the nurses aren't great at communicating and you have to ask the same question a few times or to a couple of different staff members. But mainly, they and the health workers were calm, friendly, informative and kind. What a privilege! I also felt doubly blessed that as I lay recuperating on the ward, I knew I was there on an upward trajectory, the path of recovery and improvement. Some things are hard to remember, their excavation an intricate and painstaking process. It'll be ok, it'll be ok Bad days are raging fury, chaos, bitterness, no sleep.
Fear of him. Fear for him. Impossible binaries. I'd start with the colour of loving somebody for as long as you have drawn breath: this is the pale wash that covers the canvas. Then, parallel strokes whose edges bleed and merge: this is the inseparable nature of that love, a brother and sister as children sleeping, their arms entwined. I think I'm going to disappear.
The first small ache in the body, which tells you that something is amiss, and should be attended to. A history of collective pain, such as the Palace of Tears, still haunted by final departures, uncertain futures.
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A mother's unyielding, uncompromising love. The medicine of laughter. Daniel and our beautiful mum. April 11, Heading to FAI , Montreal. February 8, October 1, April 1, March 9, November 20, September 7, September 2, Happy Mother's Day. March 26, April 1. February 1. October 1. March 1. November 1. September 2. June 1.
January 2. December 3. December 1.
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October 4. In recent years I have gotten creative in my fasting to further break my addiction to self-serving comfort.
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I have gone on months-long breaks from media, social or otherwise. And last year I took two days off of work and blindfolded myself for the entire time in order to fully submit myself to God and see only what he wanted me to see. It was the longest 48 hours of my life, but as I gave up even the most basic of comforts, I gained insights into my life I never would have in my normal routine of living as easy as possible.
I look down. Sevens need to look down too. Living in denial of pain and brokenness might help us feel better for a short while and meet our need for comfort and happiness temporarily. Entering into the pain is actually a way for Sevens to achieve great joy , as we have the opportunity to join in the work of making our world a better place or, in my case, calling the landlord and working out a way to pay a bit more rent in exchange for new carpet. Our deepest desires for true comfort, harmony, and satisfaction can only be satisfied if we get to those places through the pain instead of around it.
A healthy Seven is an amazing force for good. But we have to get serious about entering into the real world, having real conversations, and pursuing real joy. He lives in Flagstaff with his wife, Jessica, and two boys. Find a Chapter.
Study the Bible. What is the Enneagram? As a Five on the Enneagram, I love to learn and want to be competent. You'll learn how you can experience God's love more abundantly and extend God's grace to others more fully. Skip to main content. April 17, Image designed by twentyonehundred productions team member Jono Gay. Blog Categories:. Steven Grahmann.
Comments I'm married to a Seven, and I'm married to a Seven, and it's mostly a barrel of laughs. Like living at Disney World. May God use your joy and deepen it, allowing you to bring joy to others. Way to go Steven! Your name. Related Content. Welcome to the Enneagram: A Tool for Transformation.
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