Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Slice of Life

Today is voting day, aka presidential preference primary day. It's a bit weird here, with closed primaries. You must have already registered with a party preference, either Republican, Democratic, or Green. You will receive a ballot with only the presidential choices open to your party of choice. You may vote at any polling place in the county, of which there are about 60. That's a way-too-small amount, and an hour after polls opened the TV crews showed long lines.

With everything I have going on, waiting in line is not my first, nor even my 16th choice, so I've done an even better thing. I've signed up for permanent early voting status, meaning for every election a ballot is mailed out and I have a couple weeks or so to fill it in and mail it back.


Steve hasn't gotten around to doing that yet. Today may change his mind. It's his busy and much anticipated/dreaded day. This morning he meets with a specialist for evaluation of that shadow on his lung x-ray, something picked up on over two months ago during an ER visit. Of all the scary possibilities, we're kinda hoping for a diagnosis of scarring left over from Valley Fever.

Once out of the doctor's office, we'll head over to the nearby polling place where he'll wait in line to cast his vote. He wasn't sure exactly whom to vote for: the most likely to or the most wished for. I reminded him of the old adage: in the primary, vote your heart. In the general, vote your head. His decision is clearer to him now.

Waiting in a long line is only slightly less anathema to him than to me right now. We're going to pack my smaller, more portable scooter in the back of the car, where I will be waiting (reading) while he votes. I'll be there to offer assistance in what hooks into where, and he can be as patient as he needs to be while in line.

The walker is in the back of the car at present too. It's just where it got set after the last trip out to PT, yesterday. Technically, it was before the trip. I walked in under my own power, refusing the cane. My lack of stamina made that a bit difficult, but the building they are in offers plenty of sitting options between the parking lot and the waiting rooms. At any rate, it is there, just in case. I haven't used it for two days now.

By the way, now that everybody's asking, my numbers are 4 and 113 (passive). This is a reflection on how much I can straighten and bend my new knee. Since I'm always doped up before hitting the torture room, I'm a bit hazy on exactly how it works and all translates out, and usually forget what was just said about three seconds later. I think the first is for how many degrees away from perfectly straight the knee gets, perfect being 0. That makes the other number for the bend. I'm still stuck at 94 active, meaning when I'm supplying all the power to the bend just by myself, I manage 94 degrees. Remember, 90 is a right angle. The goal is 120, which seems backwards to me. We're looking for a narrower angle than 90 degrees, so wouldn't that be, say, a 60 degree angle? Anyway, a passive bend, meaning the therapist pushes until just before the point where I scream, reached 113 yesterday.

I was impressed! I'm not sure I made that even before surgery.

Of course I got a bit cocky and impatient, deciding that this would also be the perfect time to cut back on the Percoset. Would it be redundant to comment that by 7PM last night I was very much regretting that choice? I finally got the pain kicked back to my current new normal a bit after 2AM and got some sleep. We're not trying that again soon. The Dr. had already cut my dosage back and I'm no longer inclined to jump the gun.

The biggest excitement we expect tonight. Paul, my youngest, just started his vacation and is flying down today, with a stopover in Denver. Previous vacations have been working vacations for him, getting the den/bedroom turned into a library. This time he's paying his own fare and limiting his labor to several smaller jobs, like pruning a bush behind a fence or moving some middling sized rocks to the front yard. He wants to get out and see the real desert this trip, see what's blooming, maybe spot wildlife.

We've got plans.

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