|Five of the 71 surgical staples that held the Loser's incision closed.|
The hospital kept the Loser two days longer than the three minimum he'd have preferred. It made him antsy and irritable. You can't wash properly sitting in bed or a chair. He did what he could with the tub of warm water and washcloths they gave him but to feel clean the Loser needs to have water flow over him. He has that now, in the house, but he's still not stable enough to stand in the shower so he washes sitting on a shower chair, scooping water from a bucket. Better, but not ideal. He's sick to death of it.
He's moving without the crutches. Yesterday, a friend took him shopping (he hasn't been cleared to drive yet) and for the first time since late April he walked in a store and filled a basket himself. It felt good, but a odd not to have someone do his bidding. (No wonder the rich become petty and mean so quickly.)
The new knee isn't really a knee. It wasn't what others would get. Substantial poles anchor it to his diminished femur and the knee is really a hinge. The Loser won't have the mobility others do. Even though the device is made of titanium, which is lighter than steel but heavier than aluminum, it's heavy. He can feel the heaviness when picking his leg up by the pants cuff.
Yesterday was his first day not taking opiods, which did little in the way of pain relief anyway. The Loser had heard they make you constipated and it's true. Despite the stool softener he took twice a day and the psyllium husk he drinks each day, his daily session on the toilet became a once every two or even three day struggle.
Everything about this has been gross and inconvenient, though he is walking more without crutches. It's slow and awkward, but with less pain than before. The pain overall isn't bad but enough to keep him from reading well or watching anything though provoking. He lies on a couch and watches four hours of Match Game '75 and '78 on a channel he gets over the air, as he's too much of a Loser to be able to afford cable.
In September comes the removal of his prostate and—despite of what his urologist tells him—the inevitable permanent impotence and incontinence.