Friday, April 17, 2009


Some friends who know that I broke my hip last November usually start their conversation with, "How are you doing?" I do not think their question is just rhetorical, but they really want to know. (Egoist that I am.)

So today I decided to post an update. To give you some idea of how I'm doing you would have to see me navigate. When I don't use my walker or cane I lurch along like a ruptured duck. I am searching for a descriptive word of my walking stance. Is it toddle, shuffle, or sway? It's probably a combination of all three. Oops - I think I have the word - it's waddle. Yeah, that's what I do.
(Toddling is cute if you are a year old; not so cute if you are 83. Waddling isn't cute at any age.)

A stranger watching me would wonder what that poor inebriated old granny had to drink. Especially so, since I am reaching out with one arm toward the nearest wall in the event that my head starts to go south.

If you can visualize that and think it's funny, picture me when I try to stand up from a chair of
average height. I think the best way to illustrate a visual image would be to imagine an upside down L. My upper body faces the floor while the nether regions try to stay planted on terra firma. I slowly, very slowly, shuffle my feet in a turn and follow with my bod which is, at the same time, slowly rising to a three quarter position. Eventually, my head and shoulders achieve an upright status. Well, sort of.

Oh the indignity of it all. The first time Rachel saw me do my contortions getting out of a chair she asked in a concerned voice, "Are you alright, Grandma?" I do see why she worried, having never seen such a performance before. I think I probably changed the poor girl's mind about becoming a doctor.

That's just the physical part of my recovery. Somehow, the surgeon must have decided to have a little fun while I was under his full control and drilled a hole into my brain where he removed half of my memory cells. I have been missing a lot of them since I got home.

The good news is: I haven't lost my appetite. I have only gained 8 pounds because I spend most of my time sitting at this frustrating keyboard. WhooHoo !!

Well, it's time to mount my walking horse and trek down the sidewalk to retrieve my mail. The neighbors look forward to that as it provides them with their evening entertainment.


20th Century Woman said...

Oh, Darlene, I know what you mean. My legs and hips are still working, but my hands and brain seem to be on the slippery slope. I worry that soon I will have to give up knitting it is so painful. And memory, oh dear, don't remind me.

Joy Des Jardins said...

Well sweetie, I haven't broken anything yet...and my kids joke with me all the time that I waddle. Yep, now I even exaggerate it just to please them. It can't possibly be the fact that I'm short, built close to the ground, and overweight could it? Hmmmm....evil children.

Don't you worry about waddling or anything else Darlene. You just do what you have to do for your hip. Everyone who loves you could care less if you waddle, wobble, shuffle or tilt. As long as you get around and you're okay in the healing process...that's all that matters. Love, Joy

Darlene said...

20th Century Woman, Yes, getting old sure isn't for sissies, is it?

Joy, Oh gosh, I didn't want to admit that being overweight might be why I waddle. Thanks for three more descriptive words - wobble, shuffle or tilt. I love them and do all three.

Betty said...

I waddle, too, and have trouble getting out of my recliner and climbing stairs and walking any distance, and I don't have the excuse of a broken hip. So, you're way ahead of me.

Nancy said...

Well, Darlene, add me to the list of Waddlers that you know.

I have never broken anything either, except my DIET!!!!!

Have to go now, I want to shuffle over and get my Hostess Twinkies....

Darlene said...

Betty and Nancy - Thank you fellow waddlers for curing my case of loneliness.

Chancy said...

Well, Darlene I am happy to see you DID NOT break your funny bone.

Your sense of humor must keep you going.

ugich konitari said...

Its OK , Darlene. You are just doing in slow motion what most people do in discos,and socials, and they call it "dancing".....Slow motion is much more difficult to do. And no, what you do is not waddle. But move ...:-).

Ronni Bennett said...

Oh, Darlene - this is such an important post. "Stuff happens," particularly as we get older. But as Chancy noted, you didn't break your funny bone and the package is just that - packaging. It's not who we are.

I'm just glad you're getting around on your own, however slow you may be or waddling.

Terrific post.

One Woman's Journey said...

Darlene, just to let you know I look forward to all of your sharing. Do not care how you walk, waddle, whatever. Just happy you are moving and you make me smile.
I have not shared but I fractured my ankle years ago and did not have it set. Thought I had just sprained it. So that ankle and foot is acting up and I do not have the gait I once had.

Anonymous said...

As you probably remember, I'm lucky enough to never have broken a bone - that I know of (afterthought brought on by One Woman's comment). However, I can see how someone might say that I waddle. I'll stand there and shout at them, with you, "Big danged deal! I'm motating on my own!"

Your sense of humor is delicious, as others have observed. I love reading your postings. Thanks for sharing your predicament and progress with us.
Cop Car

Darlene said...

Cop Car - What a lovely compliment. I treasure it all the more because I know that, coming from you, it's genuine. Thank you.

joared said...

Glad to read you're still going strong. I'm catchin' up reading about your CA trip, getting to meet another blogger and all those fun outings plus enjoying time with your loved ones -- you clearly are leading a very busy life.

What's important is that you're making an effort to get around -- waddling or whatever. You'll do well, especially keeping such a great sense of humor.

Maggie said...

You are really good stuff. Bravo to you. Shall I send a pillow you can throw to the floor if you feel you are heading there yet again. I say to myself, nose above toes...that helps the laughter as I do my slow-mo's out of the chairs.

Last night at a BBQ joint, I was stuck midway up getting out of a booth and a lady tried to push past me to grab my seat. I couldn't think of a witty thing to say as I was stuck in position my nose at her chest height. Today it seems very funny.

seniorwriter said...

I love your sense of humor. More than six months after my double knee replacements, I still tend to wobble judt a little bit, and getting out of a chair is quite an ordeal. At lerast I'm pain-free and can get around on my own. We both have a lot to be thankful for.

Beverly said...

Darlene, you are right, growing old is not for sissies. You may feel funny walking, but a big high five for still doing go girl!!!

Xtreme English said...

you've got a fabulous blog, darlene! why i've never noticed that it does not turn up on my dashboard among the rest that i follow, i dunno.

and who the hell cares if you waddle? anyone who can think and write like you do can waddle all she wants!!

about that little town (several posts back)....i used to work in radio research. would love to know which one it was.