We went to consult the orthopedic surgeon yesterday — a very nice young man. It was an ordeal for all concerned, as Billy can’t sit up straight without extreme pain, and you have to do a lot of that in a doctor’s office.
The bad news was that he is not a subject for surgery. His age, his weight, and his medical conditions are all against him. The good news was that the fracture will probably heal without intervention — if he can deal with the pain in the meantime. Well, that’s what painkillers are for, after all.
His back is, as expected, a mess. I got a glimpse of the x-ray, and it looks as if he has less a column of vertebrae, and more of a line of gnarled chunks of bone. Some of his vertebrae are just bone grinding on bone. I got the impression that they were surprised he hadn’t been having pain for years; but his back hasn’t been a problem till the past few weeks. Or perhaps, knowing him, he just ignored it.
So he’s down in his recliner for the foreseeable future, though he can get up and down and move around briefly. As long as he’s down and still, he’s comfortable. His sons have been a blessing. David, whose wife Terri was paralyzed for so many years, has been especially helpful with his father’s needs, while son Scott keeps an eye on everything and reports faithfully to his dad.
I know the place just isn’t the same without him and his faithful pickup doing their rounds, but perhaps they’ll get back to them yet. In the meantime, he’s still able to keep track of all the boarders and keep up with the bookwork, just as well as ever.
Both of us are still recovering from yesterday. I never realized how hard it is to see someone you love in pain, and not be able to do much about it. It is stressful.
On the way to the medical center, we got a few sprinkles. The air has been really clear. Even the mountains to the southwest, usually invisible, are as sharp as knives.
Right now it’s beginning to look as if we might get a little rain later. We’ve got our fingers crossed . . .