I got my X-rays today and, to my somewhat educated eye, my hip looks good. The doctor has to see them, and he will know a lot more than I do, but the visit had a lot of good news.
Anyone who lives in a rural area has their life complicated by that fact. Today I learned that there is a surgeon who comes down here every two weeks to consult with patients. If it turns out I need it, and I like him, I will go to a somewhat larger town 1 1/2 hours away over a mountain pass for surgery. Then, four days later, I will come back to the San Luis Valley (my friend will have to drive me) and I’ll stay in the hospital in Del Norte until I’ve rehabbed enough to come home on my own.
When you are a solitary human the challenges are different. Today when I signed in at the hospital for X-rays the young woman asked me my emergency contact. I gave her the info and she said, “What’s her relationship to you?”
I said, “Friend.”
The girl goes, “We don’t have a box for that. We have sister, mother, daughter, but no ‘friend’.”
I said, “I’m the only survivor. I don’t have a family.”
That’s pretty strange, I guess. Hispanic culture is about big families and that’s the dominant group down here. AND most people who live here have lived here for generations and have family. And, let’s face it. Most people have children. I didn’t. “I guess my friends are my family,” I said.
“I have friends like that,” she said.
Of course, the hip still hurts, and I still don’t know what will happen, but I’ve lost 10 pounds since last year, my blood pressure is down, and I don’t have to go far, far away to rehab from surgery if I need it.
I was struck again by the wonderfulness of living here. How many people have a hospital that is across the road from a herd of bison?