Tel Aviv Diary -August 25-29,2015 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

August 25, 2015

Right - i'm not 'present'. my mornings have been filled with arranging nurses and blood-tests and physiotherapy and stuff like that. (Ezi has to do the running around after permissions) My afternoons are given up to resting. and evenings to complaining about my day. BORING.

But I have begun collecting the sayings of my friends and relatives - So far my favorite: "I know exactly what you're going through! My ex-husband had two operations like that. Sat around and complained all day. That's why I left him." But there are numerous "You think you're suffering? My back gives me no rest day and night! But I can't afford the time-out you're taking...

I've been sharing complaints with Oren, who has sold Papa's. "You sold it? Where do you expect us to EAT now?"

Of course my real friends are mostly quietly supportive, but the number of kvetchers give me great joy and relief.

August 26, 2015

Want another one? "Am I the first of your friends to visit you?"

"Your PHYSIOTHERAPIST is supposed to teach you how to put on underwear!"

August 28, 2015

Exhaustion sometimes empties the mind. In my case, it is total. Can't even watch television. So forgive the empty pages and don't worry. My recovery seems to be progressing beyond the wildest dreams of my therapists. Of course they usually deal with ladies in their eighties.

Here's the plan I've been cooking up. I may well have to have another hip operation in the near future. It isnt a terrible deal - but there is one place I think can be improved upon - supervised recovery. I am incredibly fortunate in that I have Ezi to help me through the dark days (and white nights) but it is extremely taxing on him. I have a few friends who are also facing some kind of joint replacement, and are on their own. They are in their sixties and seventies, and will be totally incapable of taking care of themselves. The possibility of going to rehab is problematic they say because most people in rehab are much older, and the atmosphere is often not condusive to their recovery. Since most of these replacements are planned in advance it seems to me totally possible to choose a date and a place for co-op rehab. Anyone into this?

Am I making sense? Let me try again.

In case I don't get to write every day here's my schedule for next week. Sunday I get my stitches out and my hair done. In the afternoon I hope to go for a walk with Ezi and physiotherapist. In the evening we're having a final take-away dinner from Papa's. For the rest of the week I'll be resting up from Sunday.

August 29, 2015

This might be the first day I'm beginning to understand how lucky I am - not just because I found myself treated by the best of doctors and the most considerate (if rushed) nurses, as well as a physiotherapist who took extra time to walk the halls with me.

It also because - i went home.

I promise to be finished with this narcissism as soon as I can start moving outside on my own - although when I told Richard about my shame of self-centeredness he said, "Rather than call it narcissism, I prefer to call it "prudent self-awareness." So sweet and so selfless of him.

Whereas I have tended to see it more with Seymour's humour, who wrote me from Ottawa,

"Morty visits Dr. Saul, the veterinarian, and says, "My dog, has a problem."
Dr. Saul says, "So tell me about the dogand the problem."
"It's a Jewish dog. His name is Irving and he can talk," says Morty.
"He can talk?" the doubting doctor asks.
"Watch this!" Morty points to the dog and commands: "Irving, Fetch!"
Irving, the dog, begins to walk toward the door, then turns around and says, "So why are you talking to me like that? You always order me around like I'm nothing. And you only call me when you want something. And then you make me sleep on the floor, with my arthritis. You give me this fahkahkta food with all the salt and fat, and you tell me it's a special diet. It tastes like dreck! YOU should eat it yourself! And do you ever take me for a decent walk? NO, it's out of the house, a short pish, and right back home. Maybe if I could stretch out a little, the sciatica wouldn't kill me so much! I should roll over and play dead for real for all you care!"
Dr. Saul is amazed, "This is remarkable! What could be the problem?"
Morty says, "He has a hearing problem! I said 'Fetch', not 'Kvetch'".
Now this joke cheered me up immensely and I've been telling it all week to worried friends who also were cheered up by my cheer. So what Richard calls "prudent Self-awareness" does work.

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