Alarm at 4:30 a.m. MST. Surgery scheduled for 8 a.m. Have to check in at 6. Kinda like catching a flight. While the airport is an hour away with traffic, the hospital is only 15 minutes. So much closer. But not more reassuring. Only a shorter trip to think of my mortality.
It's my cousin Gerald's birthday. Then it's a good day to have surgery because good things happen on this date. A good omen.
Not that I'm superstitious. Like Tuon the Seanchan Princess/Empress "may she live forever" in Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time fantasy series. She is a strong, brave, independent woman who believes in omens. I'm reading the fourteenth and final book in the series. It's my third time through. WoT is my security blanket. No matter what turns my life is taking or what else I might be reading, I can always go back to WoT. There I am spirited away to a world where the wheel turns as the wheel wills and good conquers evil.
4:35 I took my shower with the special antiseptic wash. Dry with a clean towel. Don clean clothes. Because knee replacement involves the implanting of a foreign material into my body, I must be especially careful of the possibility of infection. For the rest of my life.
I didn't turn the 4:30 news on.The news folk will only talk about Debbie Reynolds. She died yesterday. The day after her daughter died. Carrie Fisher, another Princess. Whose character in another fantasy series is strong and independent and brave. And she is younger than I. There's that mortality thing again.
My computer bag was packed -- my laptop, two changes of clothes.
Loose fitting clothes like the nurse who taught the pre-op class said. My exercise class clothes. We didn't have exercise class Monday because it was the day after Christmas and even exercise class teachers deserve a day off now and again. But I walked with my walking group Tuesday and we went to Panera's after.
The exercise class is for my physical well-being. The walking and good food amidst good friends is for my mental well-being. One of the walkers -- technically, she doesn't usually walk with us, but she often meets us for coffee after -- was worried. She'd had a lipoma on her back for many years and now it had started hurting. She was worried that it may have become cancerous. She was having to wait until Wednesday to see her doctor. Dammit.
A reminder of our mortality.
And I had to wait until Thursday, the 29th.
My husband drove me to the hospital and our daughter met us there. We did not mention mortality.
Three chargers were in my bag. One for my cell phone, one for my e-reader, and one for my laptop. I would need to call my son and my brother and my uncle to let them know how the surgery went. And I would need my reader so I could read myself to sleep -- I was on page 343 of 894 in that last Wheel of Time book. I had emails of good wishes to answer. And blog posts and short fiction and books to write.
Bye-the-by, my walking group friend has shingles. Not fun, but not cancer either.
And I now have a new knee.