I'm sure you all remember that life-changing time in my life two years ago when I got my new left hip, Henry. I blogged about it. Henry and I are still going strong. No divorce or separation in sight for us, and as the fabulous Dr. Harris pointed out two years ago would happen, the time has come for the right hip to have the same romance and commitment as the left.
I was supposed to do it last August. But alas, I had this cold thing with a cough that lasted well into the winter and Dr. Harris wouldn't take care of it until it had passed. Then I was looking at icy sidewalks and black ice challenges and thought the new hip marriage should clearly take place in the spring. Cough is gone. I called Dr. Harris' office last Monday.
"Hi, it's me, Christine Merser, who Dr. Harris loved when he replaced my left hip, Henry, two years ago and I'm calling because it's time to do the right hip. Dr. Harris was waiting until my cough was gone, and we are all good to go. Can we set up an appointment?"
"Dr. Harris retired two months ago, but we will set you up with another doctor right away."
Huh? What the *#$? Huh? Retired?
"Dr. Harris didn't tell me he was retiring when I saw him last year." Long pause. She says nothing. I'm not sure what I wanted her to say. "OK, here’s the thing. I want my right hip to match my left hip. Same hip mechanism, same doctor. Twins. Frick and Frack. Frankie and Johnny. Salt and pepper. Matchy-matchy. So I really need him to come back and do this."
"I understand, Ms. Merser, but he's not able to come back to do your hip. Do you want the number of the other doctor?"
I take to the phones. My daughter, about whom I'm not allowed to write, becomes a Mini-Me.
“Well, Mom, maybe it's a good thing."
"What do you mean, a good thing?!”
"No offense, Mom, but I'm not sure he did such a great job.”
“What do you mean?”
“You still limp."
"I limp because I need the other hip done," I scream at her. “For Heaven’s sake, is this what I sound like when you call me in crisis?” Even as I say it, I know it’s exactly what I sound like. I swear I will never, ever do that to her again.
Thank God my friend Sue called this morning.
I tell her, “Dr. Harris did eight hip replacements a week for ten years. Exactly the same way, over and over again, with no deaths and no infections. He’s the one that I want." My voice starts to rise, but I needn't have worried.
“You're right,” she says.
And so she is my person right now.
In case you were wondering: I am going to see the other doctor. I just hope he has a sense of humor. (Henry and I will keep you posted.)