Showing appreciation for friends ‘knee’ded along the way

Showing appreciation for friends ‘knee’ded along the way

Posted: Friday, October 12, 2012 8:01 pm
By: By Glenda Caudle

Showing appreciation for friends ‘knee’ded along the way | Glenda Caudle, Just A Thought

This is what I discovered about having a knee replaced: it’s like having a baby.
I should know. I’ve had five of them. That’s five babies — not five knees. People say I am odd, but even I am not that disjointed.
And I say thank goodness for the way that whole baby-knee thingy worked out. Kids may be more expensive in the long run and they may subject you to some sharp pains that run arthritis jabs a close second in their growing up years, but they don’t put you on a walker. At least not usually. If yours have, you may want to trade them in for a new patella, instead. With knees, you eventually get to give up the walker if you are a very, very good girl at physical therapy and don’t throw things or say four letter words out loud. At least that’s what they keep telling me.
Anyway, the similarity between the two is this: everybody has a story they want to tell you on that subject. It may be either about their own experience, or the horrific tale of someone near and dear to them, or the mind-blowing medical drama they heard related to one topic or the other on “The View.”
Well, maybe not the latter. Most people I know are not big fans of “The View” and even those who are would realize I would be the last person in the world to “kneed” the laborious delivery of any of its hostesses on either of those subjects. Or any other subjects, come to think of it.
I got my new knee a week ago today. So far, it likes me. So far, I like it. If you were around to hear me moaning and groaning in the days before I got it, you will, no doubt, be pleased to learn that I do not intend to moan and groan any more. Except on Mondays, which I generally reserve for griping and complaining, so I might as well use up all the knee-related gripes and complaints I have in that designated time frame. You might, therefore, choose to be elsewhere on days that begin with “M.”
Since I started hanging out in the new joint, I have met some fascinating friends.
There is Mr. Ben Dit. He’s a deceptively harmless looking piece of modern machinery draped in the softest lamb’s-wooly stuff. He also has a few wide strips of Velcro attached at strategic locations. Mr. Ben Dit and I are on intimate terms. He can’t keep his hands off me. Every morning when I awaken and every night before I go to sleep, he throws his prickly arms around my leg and takes me on a wild two-hour adventure. He’s pushed every limit I have, and we’re well on our way to perfecting a 90-degree turn in our relationship, at which point I expect the very walls to vibrate with the sound of “The Hallelujah Chorus.” And I shall dance a jig — a modified one, of course, but, still, a jig.
From that day forward, I expect to be able to bend the knee in a variety of situations, should I so desire, since that has been Mr. Ben Dit’s unselfish and never-wavering goal in our cozy relationship.
Then there’s Mr. I.C. Gripper. He’s there to bring me back down to size when I’ve swollen up with entirely too much self-absorption. He likes to snuggle in close in the new joint and make sure all the nasty hangers-on like those swelled-headed invaders who show up after I’ve spent time with Mr. Ben Dit come to call. His cold-hearted attitude sends them all on their way and then he just sort of gurgles on and on about what a warm personality I have.
I know there are Walkers on the maternal side of my family tree, so I’m claiming Miss Ima Walker as a long-lost cousin. We roll along together these days and my life is an open book where she’s concerned. She goes everywhere I go, believe me, and she’s kept me on a steady path, so far. I’ve been told that when she returns home, in a few more days, I’ll be making the acquaintance of Mr. Ad Justable Kane, who will not be quite so involved with me but will, doubtless, prove his worth. I actually was introduced to Mr. Kane before I started hanging out around the joint, but I thought he was a passing fancy. Now, it seems, we shall strengthen our acquaintance.
There are others who have become part of my new hop-a-long adventure, but they already were familiar faces. These are simply my newest and dearest friends.
Except, of course, for the people who introduced us to begin with. My surgeon, Dr. Michael Calfee, heads the list of people I’m grateful to be able to trust my walking future to.
There are so many others I’ve met or become acquainted with again over the past few days when I’ve spent time establishing relationships related to my future well-being. Many of them show up to take care of folks like me every day at Baptist Memorial Hospital, here in Union City. They did all kinds of caretaking jobs for me and were endlessly skilled, efficient, kind and accommodating, no matter what the circumstances under which we met. Others I have come to appreciate recently, or through the years, are at the local Doctors’ Clinic. Still others have become part of my life before and after surgery, in rehab facilities, the hospital and home situations as they have tried to cheerfully “build me up” in anticipation of the “knee”ded changeover and, after the fact, as they have worked to make it all work again through rehabilitative therapy at Synergy, at Baptist Memorial and through Care-All Home Health.
I could make up cute names for all of them: after all, I have lots of time while I’m recuperating to wax clever, but the truth is, the best name I can think of for them is this: friends. The kindest of friends who have been endlessly patient and concerned and have “hurt” with me and then rejoiced with me, as well. I have felt myself surrounded by love and excellent care in this small place we all call home.
It’s another reason I can’t imagine ever “knee”ding to live anywhere else. (Sorry, couldn’t resist one last shot. You know how I am.)
Mrs. Caudle may be contacted by email at

Published in The Messenger 10.12.12


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