A couple of weeks ago after Willow’s spectacular knee injury, I drove her to the doctor. He walked into the room and happened to see me first.
“I know you!” he said.
“Lateral meniscus repair. Twice. What, five or six years ago?”
“Yup! Five years ago. AND six years ago. Nice to see you. You have quite a memory.”
“How’s the knee doing?”
“I’ll be back soon,” I told him. “It’s iffy.”
So today he walked in and I said, “Told you.” He was really nice about it, asked me a bunch of questions, tried to figure out why the situation has rapidly devolved this weekend, and did some subtle bending and poking. He tried to do the twisty-test which reveals clearly whether what you have is a torn meniscus, in that it hurts like hell and causes lots of immediate gasping and wincing. My leg refused to move in any direction.
“You’re not going to let me try that, are you.”
“We both know I’m not going to let you try that. This is not my first rodeo.”
I actually would have let him try it, if I could have, but I had been sitting white-knuckled in the waiting room for forty-five minutes dreading that he would, so by the time he got to me it was hopeless. I was on lockdown.
I don’t want to get all technical on you, gentle readers, but the official diagnosis right now is “busted.” It was actually at “busted” weeks ago, then moved into “good and busted,” and is now hovering around “moderately to severely busted.” So they did x-rays, then the failed attempt at the twisty-test, then prescribed an MRI to follow shortly, then they had to do ANOTHER round of x-rays. Why? The MRI form asked me if I’d ever done any welding. I proudly acknowledged that I had, and stopped short of telling them I looked exactly as hot as the Flashdance girl while doing it, back in design school, and could also invite them to come sit it the steel-frame chair I made. They got all serious and said they had to scan me for stray metal. I told them I was pretty sure I’d know if I had stray metal lingering around anywhere. They said you’d be surprised.
Best news of all is that I have spent eleventy billion dollars today on health care, what with the stray-metal x-rays and all, so I should blow through that $5000 out-of-pocket expense in no time. After that, I will go to the doctor for every single issue I can think of, from hangnails to freckles to split ends, and take full advantage of my insurance investment. Thank heavens, the billing department feels sorry for me and my lame insurance. They’re willing to break it up into smaller chunks, and, thanks Mom, I am getting an MRI for Christmas this year.
Also, it is Thanksgiving week, and it is much nicer here on my couch than it is at my desk anyway. I am having an Arrested Development marathon, and then I think I will catch up on Downton Abbey, and start working through the pile of books I have backlogged. I am making my baby nephew some mittens, and will catch up on correspondence, and write a honky-tonk song about being busted. If things get really desperate I will turn to daytime television, but I’m pretty sure it won’t come to that.
My doctor said that it would be an anomaly if I’d re-torn my knee after five years; usually if it’s going to happen, it happens pretty quickly. He said there’s a good chance I’d done it years ago and it’s just starting to give me real problems. “Of course, if that’s what’s happened, you are one tough cookie,” he said. And I totally am.
I may need you to remind me of that in the next few weeks.