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02 March 2012 @ 11:03 pm
A Tale of Two Hips  
I was downstairs looking for 2012 National Geographics (I have March, missing January and February); instead I found two journals. "Kiwi's Hip Journal" and "Kwi's Hip Journal II". My hip fills up two journals! Mum wrote them; occasionally Da has a note here or there.

Note from Future Kiwi who is finished reading: I copied down more than I had intended, probably as much for myself as anyone on my flist. It's long. You're absolutely welcome to read. It's the tale of me and my hip, from the POV of my mother (and occasionally father). It's got ups and downs. It's a pretty good way to see some of my character from an outside POV. Also, proof that my parents (and even brother, who was at that time called Xander [by me]) are awesome. So if you want to get to know the teenage me who went through all of this stuff, feel free to read some or all of it!

It's so strange to skim through it. I didn't know that I was scratching so terribly even in my sleep as I recovered from at least my fibula graft. It explains some of my PTSD-like nightmares (the last one I had was third year around dissertation/exam time; Claire woke me up because I was scratching my face like crazy).

It includes stuff like (July 14th, Wednesday [2004]), "Kiwi is upset about doing more surgery now but seemed to adjust to the idea quickly. I don't know how she is doing that so well, but I'm sure proud of her."

Ahahaha and then the time I got addicted to a cyber cafe (left after 9pm) before my second operation. I loved that place!

"Scar has puffy area that bugs her. I wish I knew how to help." Still do - got worse after the third operation - they kept cutting into the same place!

"Kiwi drew an awesome picture of herself as a furry person on crutches. Otherwise, we have no pictures of her on them except Alex's graduation (6th grade) shots." Thinking I gotta find that picture... *Grins.*

"Red Sox won the World Series last night!!" The sort of thing my mother cared about and I totally didn't. :P

I knew it! I knew my hardest operation was on April 14th! I have the tendency to get quite sad on that day, and I always guessed it was the anniversary of something bad that I still knew on some level, and it is. Also happens to be the anniversary of Rachel Carson's death. But hopefully this time I'll actually remember so that, come April 14th, I can be aware of why I'm sad and donate a bit of time to it on a more conscious level.

Oh, and if you want to know what I'm like on drugs: "Surgery in progress. 1st update was by the anesthesiologist personally. She said Kiwi is an amazing young lady with a great wit. [Anesthesiologist] put the epidural in 4cm to prevent the problems we had last time. Kiwi told her that she is surrounded by teen drama that she does not cause. Then she asked for a hug :)." (I was awake during the epidural implant; I do remember the anesthesiologist [a very nice lady] saying that she could do it awake or when I was knocked out, but that awake would be easier--though it would hurt a bit. I told her awake was fine. Then things started getting a bit less clear [I already had some drugs in me] and apparently I started saying how shiny everything was, and, "Are you going to use that on me? Neat!")

"She wants a post surgery pic now, but I left the camera in the car for safe keeping." "10.56 pm - she's sleeping, at least mostly. I just turned the TV off and she hasn't noticed. Time to try and rest! She is itching almost constantly - even in her sleep. The nurse came in b/c she kept making the IV alarm go off. I told her she didn't mean to - that she is actually asleep but scratching."

"8.40 PT came to check about time. Kiwi feels tired after changing dressings so PT will return at 10.00. ... 10.45 They tried to start PT - got thru a few exercizes. Kiwi's pain level 8-9 before they got to the hard stuff so she got 1 more perc. & PT will return soon. She is nausea[ted] & looks poorly. Wound dressings look good. She says she feels feverish. [Father] looks a bit wiped out too."

"11.02 Restarting PT now. Looks VERY painful. I am afraid she will pass out when she starts to get vertical. 11.15 She started to pass out when getting vertical. ...I'm going to get her some decent looking food! I almost vomited when I saw the hot plate they sent!"

"3.40 P.T. went well. She crutched to the purple block & back. She also did leg lifts. We still need to do the rest of the exercizes later today. ...Asked to remove IV b/c it was hurting but the other IV wasn't working so we left it & put Emla cream on externally."

"Dr. Morrison came at 3:30 & changed Dr. Anderson's order for oxycontin to oxycodone. Every 3 hrs. I tried to tell him that I want the 12 hr. stuff for when we are @ home but he had Kiwi make the decision & gave her ONLY the 3 hr. stuff." Oh my good gods did I HATE that stuff - I got off it as soon as I could. Did my brain in. How anyone could take those recreationally...I don't even want to think about it.

"8:50 Asked nurse if we could switch to oxycontin. ...11:36 I couldn't sleep b/c Kiwi was scratching herself constantly[.] ...Kiwi has developed a strange rash above her lip (upper) - we don't know why. Could it be the oxycontin v. oxycodone? We'll see if the Revex (Benadryl) stops the reaction." alksdjflasdjf that rash was horrible! The skin between my lip and nose disappeared and was replaced by a bubbly rash and then what seemed like fish scales. I felt like an alien. A very itchy alien.

"1:30 She is comfortably watching TV, no more pain medicine needed. Black comforter too heavy - we need something light on the leg." That was a semi-lie on my part: pain medicine still needed pain-wise, but stubborn refusal to have them in my system greater than the need for the meds. It was nice having my brain back, though. Had to take more again after, the break was good!

"9:15 pm Brad slept over - movies."

"5:00 rolled onto her belly. Done PT (I hope!)" Funny how it sometimes sounds like a baby journal, what with my learning to roll over and walk again... :B

"8.36 Alex & Kiwi are watching Monty Python together now. 10:44 [Father] & Ki watching The Lion King." Awwwr! My family is adorable. ♥

Although, TMI warning, I then went through some of the most intense pain of my life: my body waking back up, guts and all. To date, that has been the only time in my life that I have looked up toward the sky and said, "Please, God, I will believe in you if you will stop this pain!" It would almost have been humorous if it hadn't hurt so gosh-darned bad. But by later that evening I was able to eat Easy Mac and Chicken Pot Pie (two of my favourites), and so it was worth it. (;

"10:00 Bad movie, fairly comfortable." The next day I had to face showering with a shower chair...that wasn't so much fun. :P

"She is very scared & sad & anxious about having put some small weight on the leg this week." Oh, gods, that was horrible. The surgery required NO WEIGHT on the leg (it couldn't touch down) for a good while after surgery, and on one trip to the bathroom I almost fell and the foot touched down, potentially even got a little weight. I cried and cried and cried, thinking I had ruined the surgery and that it was all for nothing. (It did fail - hence the hip replacement - but I doubt it was that one incident.)

Thankfully, "Kiwi's report card arrived by mail yesterday. STRAIGHT A'S!! :)" So some things were still going well. (;

"4/23/04 Kiwi even sadder none of her friends have come. Perhaps this is a bigger issue behind the anxiety about having put weight on her foot." Well...it's a guess, but no. That anxiety was all real fear that I'd frakked the surgery and was going through the worst recovery yet (and, I say at 22, my worst recovery ever) for nothing.

"& Hope, thought Hope wanted to see Kiwi as much as me. That visit got her up and showered. :) 5:00pm Kiwi's friend Dana just called. Now she sounds like a million bucks. The power of friendship! I hear laughter! 6/7pm - Still talking & laughing. :)"

"She had some time w/ Quackie [childhood friend] after church - Honey Dew :). Kiwi feels ready for school tomorrow!! :)" It was good to be back, but the wheelchair was no fun.

"Very red skin - super irritated! Kiwi CLEARLY has an allergy to medical tape!"

"It's raining. Kiwi likes rain."

"2 weeks today 4-28-05 Kiwi is EXHAUSTED. She is very concerned that if she takes a day it [won't be] excused. I have promised her it will be. She needs some SLEEP! Still up at 11:15 pm. Homework." Gee, that sounds exactly like me. *Waves to 15-year-old Kiwi.* We're crazy, you know that?

"Feb '06 [sophomore year] Dr. Skoff removed the pin from Kiwi's leg. I was w/ Hanna & made it back just in time to be w/ her post op." Oh, yes, that was on Valentine's Day! It wasn't the best V-day I've ever had. :B Rather dysfunctional, actually, since I was getting de-screwed.

"4-18-06 Kiwi has been AMAZING. She kept to her weight bearing parameters & the graft is vascularized. But the collapse [of the femoral head] has been dramatic anyway. We saw Dr. Scheller at NE Baptists. He brought her [something] x-rays to a group of hip replacement specialists & they all said 'Use it.' So Kiwi has been using her let. It hurts every step. No pain when still. We reached the 1yr mark on Friday 4/14/06 & are seeing Dr. Skoff today to complete this journey of the FUFG [the fibula graft surgery]. ...Medically he said it's mostly collapsed. Probably still enough there for a partial replacement. Standard answer would be hip fusion." Ugh, the idea of hip fusion (no movement in my hip joint) at 16 drove me crazy - I said absolutely not!

"9/19/06 [junior year] Hip pain is getting bad again. Request for rolling backpack & request for wheelchair in plant science today. She swam though! And she got her driver's permit." Oh how I hated requesting a wheelchair! I was in Ms. Watson's class again - I wanted to participate!

"10/30/06 Kiwi has been using a wheel-chair at school & has increased pain. She is taking Advil or Tylenol in the morning."

"11/3 It's National Novel Writing Month & Kiwi has 5,000 words out of 50,000 words done. She's very happy." Awwr, even a mention of NaNo WriMo. It was the only year I didn't win - one of the only things the pain stopped me from doing.

"11/7 Kiwi says her lower leg is NOT right w/out the fibula. She refuses to wear her orthodics." Er, those had to do with my knees, and they've never done much. Now I wear them so that when my mother asks 'Have you been wearing your orthodics?' I can say 'Oh yes, every day Mum, every day.' Plus, they give me another half-inch of height when I'm in my shoes. (;

"11/16 Received email from Dr. Urbaniak: 'Dear Mrs. St[.], I have presented Kiwi's x-rays to Dr. Vail and his comments were "I think that there is too much destruction of the head to place a resurfacing reliably. Likewise, I think that a hip fusion would be a poor choice for the same reason. My recommendation would be a hip replacement with a hard bearing surface such as metal or ceramic."' And thus the idea for Fluffy arose!

"In my conversation w/ Dr. Urbaniak on 11/13 he said her height/leg length discrepancy is not very significant & that she more has 'contracture of the hip toward the midline'. She needs to do exercizes to strength that. Lie on her good side, lift left leg up, stretch tight. Kiwi says the exercize is too painful & refuses, at least until Spring." Oh ye good green earth did that exercise hurt!!! Man, I'm usually pretty good with pain, but that was just not happening. I can do it now with the hip replacement, which is good. (:

"1/11/07 Got a letter from Dr. [something] over the holidays. [English Uncle] was in the kitchen when I opened it & burst into tears. He asked if he should go get [Father]. I thought, 'Why? He wouldn't cry & would probably look at me a bit strangely for reacting so strongly as we'd already gotten the same opinion from Dr. Vail (a few pages back).'" Ah, poor Mum, the only one who ever reacted to things by bursting into tears. Da and I usually sat back for a moment, silently considering, and then nodded before moving on to questions. Mum used to ask me, "How are you such a cool cucumber?!" (after I was told I'd never play soccer again) and I wasn't sure how I could be anything but and keep going.

"Kiwi is getting her braces off next Tues, Jan 16, 2007. After the retainer visit we'll have less doctor visits there! 1 down & done! :) ...Kiwi read the two notes from Dr. Vail & Dr. Desmet [?] a few days after they arrived. She took it well (far better than her mom). She said she DOES want to get a hip replacement before going off to college." Too true. So many doctors were saying I should wait 'til 21 (while in/just after college) for the replacement, and I was thinking, "What, wait with this pain? What about quality of life?!" I wanted to go for it.

"1/16/07 Called Dr. Scoff's office & made an appt. for him to look @ Kiwi's [something] on the 26th! Yeah - only one trip to Boston. Appt. 1:45 1/26/07. Kiwi won't be happy about missing classes..." Ahahaha, too true. Junior year was awesome!

"1/25/07 Spoke to Dr. Christina [something] @ Children's & filled her in on Kiwi & her need for a hip replacement. She told me she has been calling ALL the parents of kids on Lupron therapy to watch for hip pain! A young girl, off Lupron for a few weeks/month just had surgery for SCFE [slipped capital femoral epiphysis]. Because she had been warned her case was not really as bad as Kiwi's. Dr. [something] is going to write a paper on Lupron & SCFE w/ the hypothesis that the growth plate no longer knows how to function when the estrogen returns."

"4-6-06 Kiwi's pain has ramped up. ...We leave for England & tours of 4 colleges on 4-15-06...I'm sure 4 tours in 5 days will be a LOT of walking for her. ...The only good thing about the increased pain is that we feel quite certain we NEED to do this hip replacement. She has not grown any taller over the past year. She has an annual physical in May, before the surgery so we'll know for sure then. 4'11" v. 4'10 3/4" would be a nice round # - but since when has Kiwi fit into anything like that :). We'd probably find it [something - disgruntling?] (is that a word?)"

"Met w/ Lynda [surname] & Brittany last week. It was great. Brittany had a hip replacement 5 years ago when she was 18. She is very happy w/ it. She says she can't run though. I didn't like that. She looks terrific & seems very happy."

"7-14-07 ...The last few weeks have been hard. Kiwi used crutches for a college day @ school on Mon. She decided to keep using them all week. Yesterday she was hurt on the stairs @ school & began using wheelchair at school. So, we are borrowing Merf's [neighbour's] wheelchair & taking it to England in the morning." I don't quite understand how it's July 14th when it goes back to April the next day, so I'll just guess she meant a 4 instead...

"4/28/07 Her leg is getting worse by the day & we are almost looking forward to the surgery now. 4/30/07 She's using the crutches at school but hasn't mentioned using the wheelchair. ...I just asked her - no wheelchair since we returned."

"6/25/07 We came back from Harlan's [chiropractor's] knowing Mrs. Cavanaugh was coming to visit. Kiwi slept. We stopped at the Outlet mall & got Mrs. Cav some Harry & David pears & sauce. She arrived w/in minutes of our return home. Kiwi was VERY happy. [Mrs. Cav] brought Willow Tree [egg salad/chicken salad]. We three sat at the kitchen counter & ate mini sandwiches (not Kiwi - just a smoothie). Then we showed [Mrs. Cav] pictures of Kiwi going back to 5th grade & when she was the flower girl @ [aunt's] wedding. Kiwi showed her the downstairs room & they stayed together in there. Laughter & joy began floating out as they relaxed together. I popped in & suggested that Mrs. Cav draw something on the white board for Kiwi to have. She drew curtains and said, "All the world's a stage." To me it is a window to her for Kiwi to go through whenever she wants to be w/ her Kindred Spirit." Wow. Reading that was intense. Anyway, moving on!

"6/25/07 Ritual - Kiwi didn't call anyone & ask them to come all day. Mrs. Cav said, "Makes it real then, doesn't it?" That hit the mark, or a mark. I feared [Kiwi'd] waited too long & no friends would be able to come... However! I was wrong! First Sara [church friend] arrived. Then Snoopy & Merf & Laura & [someone] (who got lost pushing Kiwi to math in the wheelchair in 8th grade :) [geeze I really wish I remembered who now]). And TJ came! & Quackie too. Dale & Lisa [mother of and high school friend]. 8 friends @ the last minute. Kiwi has good friends. I called Carol [minister] at 4pm & invited her. She came! Kate & Carla arrived late & stayed late :). Kate turned 50 at midnight. Joan [adult church friend] opened the circle by having Sara read a quote from Chief Seattle. Then she opened the directions. She called [Father] to open West. She called Carol to open one. She called me to open one (East). Laura may have opened one too. Then Kiwi lit the center spirit candle. We smudged each other front & back. It was a sight to see." The "power object" of the evening was a soccer ball, which was rather fitting. And it was a comfort to have so many friends around, caring for me, the night before my hip replacement. TJ and I drove partway into town and hung out in the back of his car, just chatting. I miss that boy. He's all busy and boyfriended now! But he's still my gay boyfriend. ♥

"Probably can get bone Monday." Yup, I wanted my old hip bone. And I have it!

"6/26 Surgery started ON TIME. Kiwi went to surgery at 7.50. Kiwi was calm before surgery but then took 'calming medicine' and became more panicy." I bolded this sentence because it is one that summarises me as a person very well. I was completely calm when it was just me and my own brain. My mother, however, was freaking out; and the doctors kept offering me medicine to calm me (just because they always have to offer). Despite being calm, I saw that my mother was freaking and that if I took the pills she'd freak less, so I took them. And then they messed with the natural rhythm of my brain (the thoughts I would normally have/their speed/their order) and I noticed and then I was freaking out! All rather funny to me now.

"Dr. Murphy appeared after surgery at about 11.15. He appeared very tired but became more alert as he spoke to us. He was pleased that the bone was 'stable'. Said he needed to use non-standard tools because of graft. Said this was second 'post-Duke' [where I had my fibula graft] operation in two weeks."

"They let us into post op. Kiwi was awake and very 'up'. Making jokes with all staff. She immediately said that the hip felt 'better'. Does not crunch, crinkle, etc. We leeft her and came to her room 554 and waited for her. Snoopy & TJ visited. [Father] left for Alex. Toward the end Kiwi got weepy because of tiredness. ...Kiwi stood up that evening!"

"6/27 Switched from the drip to oxy[mix between contin/codone, so dunno] and Kiwi was better. Itching fairly bad but Kiwi was better able to sleep. Dr. Murphy visited. Everything seemed ok. [Father] came back with fruit! Grampa & Memere brought Froggy [stuffed animal]. [tattooedsappho] came with Harry Potter gifts [including from lash_larue]. Gar visited with Carolyn [church friend & her mother]. [Sapph] left (Kiwi kept refering to herself in third person - tired)."

"6/28 Thursday morning Nurse entered, turned on lights, took blood. Kiwi got up. Felt very faint. Low blood pressure. Blood count was low. Gave her a drip. Blood pressure improved."

"PT went well again - no faintness. PT person said that if it were up to her, leaving would be no issue. It was simply the blood issue that was cause of the extra day."

"6/29 ...Kiwi got dizzy after PT & shower. Nurse Karen reports her passing out in the shower." Ahahaha, yup, I've often joked that I've showered with a nurse before...and passed out. :B (That was such an odd experience! I remember it well.)

"Kiwi did not [need] pain med @ 7.30. [Father] fed her steak. Pain in the back of [her] knee & calf - 'on & off for several days' she tells Dr. [something]."

"7/12 ...Bones ready for pick up! Kiwi happy" Truth.

"7/13/07 Nancy said Kiwi can drive again!! Kiwi is happy about that! Only when she is not taking percocet."

"7/14 ...She did not want to drive to Medway even thought she wanted to go to the GSA [Gay Straight Alliance] mtg. She stayed home until about 6pm when she & [Father] went to get pizza & landed at the new art store. She dropped [Father] off at home & went to visit Andi & then Snoopy. She called requesting a sleepover @ Snoopy's at 11:05pm. I told her she had to take the [blood thinning medicine I can't read]. She came home & took it & left. She insists this is NOT too much activity but she is pushing it. Tomorrow she is going from Snoopy's to Andi's party @ her grandmother's to swim in a lake. She'll be home by 6pm tomorrow! I hope she is ready for this. It is wonderful to see normal kid behaviour!" Typical Da and I, going to an art store. And it was so worth having sleepovers and going to parties again without the incredible pain I'd had the year before! I was so ready. I swam to a little island with my friends and climbed up a little cliff just to feel like a mountain-climbing mermaid, somehow - just because it would have been so impossible before. It was incredible. Like I said, sometimes this journal sounds like a baby journal - I was learning to be a kid again.

"7/15 I'd sure like to catch her doing PT - even once!" Nope. I was sneaky. And often did things at night. (Gee, that changed...)

"7/24 Kiwi & I are discussing all the thank you notes that should be written! We both LOVE writing thank yous! Kiwi is swimming (although this has caused swimmer's ear AGAIN!) & driving & even climbing to the attic to get [grandmother's] old trunk to take to Rowe!" A new hip made me pretty gutsy, I admit. It was just nice to be free again.

"The actual 7/24/'07 Kiwi can walk without a cane. That is the only important part." Ahahaha, there's the gutsy bit again, as I can clearly recognise that as my writing. A bit of a "Mum, priorities!" post. :B D'awr, ickle teenage Kiwi.

"7/25/07 Saw Dr. Murphy today for post op visit. He was VERY impressed by Kiwi's range of motion & lack of pain. He OK'd aspirin at camp v [that medicine - commadin? coumadin?]! ...He said, 'I'll bet you are glad to put this hip stuff behind you.' Truer words were never spoken! We also got the bone! Marie in pathology ROCKS! It looked rounder than I though tit would & it STANK! Camp on Sunday. Yeah!! She is so happy to go & have this grand 3 week celebration of life & hip life. Hip hip hooray! As we keep saying. Love, Mom" One of my favourite entries.

"8/4/07 No word from Kiwi @ camp. I assume that is to be good news & happy hip."

"9/8/07 Great joy now. Wow, it's been a while. Kiwi returned from camp & was no longer using her cane! She spent the next 8 days having sleepovers & enjoying summer. She is walking very well! I'm scared because she is NOT doing ANY of the PT. She is just using the leg. I fear she is healing slightly off center without realizing it --> keeping up the P.T. I want to get her straightened out at the chiropractor, but he'll be afraid to really DO IT for a while, so I'm waiting. Kiwi needs to make her college applications before the month ends. UCAS & FAFSA too. So the hip 'Fluffy' is not getting a whole lot of attention. It is so wonderful to see her walking freely, even running & especially dancing. ...Hopefully this book can become defunct now. I hope I remember to update it after the Oct. 8th appt, though Love, Mom P.S. Many thank you notes should be written!" Another case of "Kiwi hides her PT" - just one of those odd things I didn't like doing in front of people if I didn't have to. And, alright, I didn't do absolutely everything as often as I should have (there were so many exercises that I was supposed to do so many times a day I wouldn't have had time for anything else - like fun things), but I did most of them enough, and my hip was getting along very well (see: Dr. Murphy being impressed).

"10-8-07 Just returned from our 2nd f/u w/ Dr. Murphy. He is very impressed w/ Kiwi's flexibility! [See! Right there!] X-rays were taken. They look great. He hopes 'Fluffy' will last for decades or even as long as needed. F/u in 1 yr. We made an appt. for Aug 13th at 10am 2008 as we don't know if Kiwi will be local in a year. We are doing thank you notes now. :)"

"8/6/09 It's been a long time since I made an entry! Kiwi & Fluffy survived their first year away at uni. It appears Kiwi can handle one semi-strenuous day (more than all the walking involved in being a student). The following day she uses her cane & is quite sore. She said she may look into PT or water exercise. She rarely takes pain med, but is in pain far more often than I wish. Hopefully she will find more ways of being with her body that will help her leg hurt less. I believe her orthodics in good shoes would help over time but she loves wearing her Doc Martin boots. Kiwi is home for the summer now. We probably have another follow up [so that's what f/u means] appt. w/ Dr. Murphy but I don't really [know] when. Cold hurts her hip. Cane helps with all the walking at university. I think we've reached a sort of 'normal' but I wonder if we should still get a handicapped license plaque again for bad days. XO Mom P.S. Long Live Fluffy!"

And that is the final entry in the Story of Kiwi and her Hip(s).

Long Live Fluffy! I am much the same now. Some days are almost too hard to bear - but they're rare, thankfully - some days are difficult, some days are reasonable, and some days are so wonderful I forget I have a hip replacement altogether.

I had plans for getting things done today, I suppose, but between finding these journals and my parents having fun friends over, I didn't get anything done. Unless I count this. I think I will, actually. It feels like a step toward the self-esteem and non-sensitivity goals: it reminds me of what I've been through, what I was like as I went through it, and put things in perspective. I have broken myself; I have been broken and put back together differently, painfully; I have scratched myself silly; I have learned to live in pain; I have learned to live without pain again; I have passed out in showers; I have taught myself to walk multiple times; I have pulled myself through the process of being fixed, as much as I could be, with the help of my family and friends.

I lived through it. I have the scars. Laughing and smiling and dancing are still some of my favourite activities. I know it's not about "what we do" or "what we've done", but I think a key part of what makes us up is "how we've done it", and I did it pretty well. I get to say that I matter. I mattered enough to fight to be happy and fight for what I needed--so somewhere, deep down, I think I matter and I think I'm worth the effort.

It's just a matter of bringing that to the surface more often, when I'm not put in such extreme circumstances (because, good green earth, I'd really prefer not to for another Good Long Time!). Kiwi out! *Flies away, cape all aflutter, because apparently now she wears a cape.*
"Q" is for "quor": ::hug::q_sama on March 3rd, 2012 04:45 am (UTC)
Wow, reading this was a fascinating and heart-warming look into your family and everything that makes you you. We haven't known each other very long or well, and this was the first I knew of your surgeries. It was illuminating (not that you're defined by your experience, but it's still one thing in all that's you). I'm kind of touched that I got to read it. :).
Kiwi Crocus: EA || Rose || Flower in her hair.cranky__crocus on March 3rd, 2012 04:56 am (UTC)
Wow, reading this was a fascinating and heart-warming look into your family and everything that makes you you.
Thank you for that! And it really is true! It seems to include everything, from my family relations to everything that was happening at the time: braces, driving, summers, school-work/grades, teachers, college visits, college apps, college experience...all tied in with the 'hip thing' that I went through. Which is very true to life!

Thank you for your equally touching comment! ♥ I'm so glad you found reading it to be something other than just 'long'. (: Thank you for reading and commenting!
?elsceetaria on March 3rd, 2012 04:50 am (UTC)
It's awesome that your parents kept those and you found them.

Yay for you for remembering all that you've been trough and overcome!!!

(Is it weird that I found that a very interesting read? I would like to say yes, but then I'd probably have to invalidate everything I study)
Kiwi Crocus: HP || Rolanda || Quidditch from above.cranky__crocus on March 3rd, 2012 05:00 am (UTC)
Yeah, my mother is wonderful. (: And it speaks highly of my father that she manages to rope him in to help. (;

I don't think it is at all weird that you found it all very interesting to read. (And that sounds slightly full of myself. :B) But really, it's the sort of tale that only I will have (I haven't met anyone else who has had that string of medical stuff) and, even if others had the events, we would all have dealt with it in different ways and with different families. So it's not something a person comes across twice - and that tends to make something interesting. Especially since it DOES align with what you study!

I was surprised to find that my mother never mentioned my panic attacks at school and starting therapy during sophomore year. Perhaps at the time she didn't know it was all related to my hip (it was an off-shoot of losing my 'athletic' identity - I took up the new identity of basically a Hermione-student, and it was incredibly stressful to agonise over every single point).
gerristgerrist on March 5th, 2012 02:10 am (UTC)
Thanks for saying "It's awesome that your parent kept those and you found them."

I think it might be fair to say that her mother made those and included anecdotes of her father's presence within them. I always hoped they would be something she would find one day (perhaps even when I was long gone), but that they would remind her of how much she was loved. Reading this has been a gift to me - knowing that she (you) enjoyed the occasional summaries of hip and life I jotted down.
Kiwi Crocus: Zoë Lewis || Tea time!cranky__crocus on March 5th, 2012 02:16 am (UTC)
Hahaha I think (hope) that I was clear elsewhere that it was almost all you. But I'm pretty positive that I spotted Da's writing a few places! (His was never very detailed, either.)

I snoop too much to have found them once you were long gone. :P The rest of the medical stuff, maybe...it's all stacked in huge folders and looks rather uninteresting.

Definitely enjoyed it! Thanks! ♥
Nicki: no fearperoxidepirate on March 3rd, 2012 05:56 am (UTC)
I'm glad you posted this. I appreciate knowing some of what you went through, particularly since I'll be with you on April 14 this year. And it sounds like it's good for you to be reminded that this is part of what you've lived through and why you are where you are now.

ALSO. You wear a CAPE! (:
Kiwi Crocus: Lesbians || Boots.cranky__crocus on March 3rd, 2012 09:32 pm (UTC)
It's not quite as bad on the 14th as I make it seem, I'm sure - usually it's just a sense of unease and a tingling "something's wrong here" (sort of like when my conscience is stirred up but I don't know why yet), and that lasts until I figure out why. Then once I do it's usually a few minutes of, "Oh, right, this is one of those things about my life that sucks. Lemme acknowledge that for a bit." Usually I talk to myself a little - sometimes to my hip and missing fibula, as silly as that is - and usually it's in private or when I don't think anyone's listening. Most of the day I'm fine. (: A cuddle will go a long way, of course. (;

It was definitely good for me to be reminded of this. It absolutely reminded me of why I'm where I am now, and also things that worked toward making me who I am (in how I take things in, react, respond, deal in general, darker sense of humour, whatever else).

I actually do have a silly little costume cape. Now I'm all tempted to wear it some time when you're here. :P (I have a cloak, too, but that's more witchy and less capey.)
Kitty Ryankitty_ryan on March 3rd, 2012 12:25 pm (UTC)

i simultaneously have a lot to say and not much at all. A part of me really, really wishes I had this sort of documentation of my surgeries, and another part can't imagine it. But weveryone is right: it's an honour to read this, and to look into you and your family. You are unfailingly generous in all sorts of ways--I hope you know and take pride in that.

(Also, aaargh! graft scratching! weird, puffy bits of scar adhesions! epidurals! oxycodone! CALMING MEDS THAT MAKE YOU ANXIOUS. Reading al of these is a little like looking back over my own life.)

love you.
Kiwi Crocus: Seasonal || Winter Cottage.cranky__crocus on March 3rd, 2012 09:45 pm (UTC)
i simultaneously have a lot to say and not much at all.
Totally know the feeling.

I didn't know I had this sort of documentation until yesterday. (Well, I must have at one point since I wrote in it and thus must have found it, but I doubt I read through much of it since I was so much 'in the thick of it' still - and thus it didn't imprint on my memory too much.)

Unfailingly generous? I am immeasurably flattered, certainly, but is sharing of myself and my family generous? When I do it, I'm always tempted to feel self-centred and selfish ("Here, everyone, look at all this stuff about ME!")... I thank you for your kind words, anyway, and I will try to take them into the little barrier around my heart and mind that tries to keep the meaner thoughts/feelings that I have out.

Thankfully I never had much specific scratching of a graft site - since mine was a bone - but due to tape allergies and the drugs, I was constantly scratching. Although I did feel this deep itch in my lower leg where my fibula had been but was no longer, and, when I was out of pain, a similar deep itch up in my hip where the fibula had been put. I didn't quite know what to do with those, since I obviously couldn't scratch them...

Still very self-conscious about the puffy scars/scar tissue. Most of my actual scars healed up pretty well - the hip replacement scar healed better on one half (where my panties rubbed over it) and worse on the other half (outside the panty-line) - but I still have this big blob of scar tissue on the upper outside part of my left thigh. It makes me asymmetrical in dresses and jeans, which really bugs me. I think if I were ever going to have surgery for purely cosmetic purposes...it would be to get rid of that blob. Especially since it feels weird: I can't feel the surface skin very well, so if you drew a pencil or something over it I wouldn't well notice; if poked it feels as though I'm almost being poked through layers of water; I tend to bump it on things (if I lean against a table, or something) and then it hurts. Blerg. There's also the argh-I-have-scars issue, but after reading enough fic, I'm beginning to trust that some people really don't mind scars or even think they're cool/interesting. (And, really, they are sort of fun to touch, with the whole it's-skin-in-its-cut-and-healed-form. Surprisingly soft.)

Oh, and I forgot the joy of catheters! One of mine got all stuck/went wrong at one point. That was super fun. :B Then I had the joy of lifting myself up for bed pans. Honestly, had I not had a snarky-but-understanding Rosethorn and a soothing Lark in my head, I'm not sure how I would have made it through with a sense of humour! Thankfully doctors haven't found a way to cut that out yet. (;

Love you too. (: Someday, we should talk about all this in person and flail our arms appropriately (medical talks always require gesticulations, to my line of thinking).
gerristgerrist on March 5th, 2012 02:18 am (UTC)
"Honestly, had I not had a snarky-but-understanding Rosethorn and a soothing Lark in my head, I'm not sure how I would have made it through with a sense of humour!" And here we have a big Dad contribution. We went to the Coop bookstore across from Children's Hospital one day and I showed him the series I thought you might want because you'd enjoyed a previous series by Tammy. But these books were only available there in hard cover and I said "too expensive for a series I'm not even sure she wants". He firmly overrode my statement and bought the books. For about a year I thought I had been right as you didn't touch them. But when you did!! ... they became like part of your soul.
Kiwi Crocus: Hair || Floral hair.cranky__crocus on March 5th, 2012 02:46 am (UTC)
*Grins.* Gotta sit to wait tight and wait for me to take things in. It was hard work leaving one whole universe behind for another!

Was that during one of my surgery times? When I first fractured my hip, and had to get screwed back together?

They are certainly a big part of me and my life now. ♥
zee: cuddles *-*zofbadfaith on March 5th, 2012 01:00 pm (UTC)
You're all kinds of amazing, youngster.
Kiwi Crocus: Fantasy || Pegacorn.cranky__crocus on March 5th, 2012 06:10 pm (UTC)
Youngster! YOUNGSTER?! Why my hip replacement and I oughta jump ya!

Or, more likely, I'll go out of my way to charm The Doctor and then go live with him for a year in space until you and I are the same age, or perhaps until I'm a touch older. (; And then I shall put on very high heels and wonder why my dear youngster-sister is looking so very short today!

(And thank you. ♥)