Posted Thu, 04/03/08

At the end of April I will be going in for surgery and be off for about a week, the reason for which is to fix a blunder performed by another doctor eight years ago. I'm not very happy about it, but I'd rather get it taken care of now. It's not life-threatening, nor do I have a deadly disease.

That said, I've been putting together instructions for my mother should the worst happen. I'm not overly fond of doctors or hospitals. I always assume the worst from both because of my past experiences, so I'm preparing myself. I did much of the same eight years ago, so I suppose I'm following a weird pattern.

First there are the instructions for getting into my computer if I never make it home, then there are directions for a funeral service (morbid I know, but necessary) whereupon I want Foofer's ashes with me; and lastly there is the distribution of my worldly possessions. It sounds dire but is really not. Being prepared for the worst is not such a bad thing. Of course there is a 99% chance I'll come home happy and smiling and all of the above will be moot, but at least I have my final wishes in writing.

Impending surgery also fills me with a sense of urgency to accomplish as much as I can with my writing, just as I did eight years ago. There is certain amount of work I want done if not complete before I enter the dubious halls of medicine. If I leave a specific portion undone it will probably hang like a thread in my mind and bring me back from the brink if anything dire happens. I don't trust my life in someone else's hands, frankly, even medical professionals. If you think about it, surgery is a job for them; you are the one among many. Not very reassuring, is it?

However, I must say I do like my current doctor. He has a very good sense of humor. When we were deciding which day to have the surgery, he said: "I operate on Monday, Thursday and Friday. Which day would you prefer?"

I thought about it for a minute. Then the image of a car factory came to my mind. It is said vehicles assembled on Mondays and Fridays are the least desirable: people really don't want to work on Monday, and on Friday they can't wait to get started on their weekend. So I chose Thursday.

Without batting an eye, the doctor said: "That's good, because I usually come to work on Monday with a hangover.”

He was smiling as he spoke, though. If anything, the man will keep me laughing until the whole mess is over with.