BOOMER TALK: Dem bones gonna walk around you

Columnist Carole Fawcett looks at human bones and joints

You’ve likely heard the words to this song most of your life, or variations of it at the very least—“thigh bone connected to the hip bone, hip bone connected to the back bone, back bone connected to the shoulder bone…”

It was one of those fun little songs that you might have sung at camp while growing up. You likely didn’t think it would actually impact your life did you? Well, surprise.

If you are a baby boomer, you may have had some experience with bones, joints and replacement of same.

I’ve just had my 14th surgery. I was born with hip dysplasia and in my 30s and 40s had 12 surgeries where my femur was broken in order to realign the ball and socket of my hip joint.

It was called an osteotomy, and unfortunately it brought with it many complications.

So, like the song says, my thigh bone was not connecting to my hip bone correctly. Dem bones were not cooperating.

Starting last year, I had my right hip replaced and this year my left.

I am grateful as I look forward to being able to walk without limping, and taking part in different activities once again without pain.

See: Boomer Talk: The psychology of a smile

I have no family to help, and given hip replacement surgery is considered to be elective—an army of my friends went into action.

One of them flew down to Vancouver to accompany me back home and then stayed the night with me.

Another friend came over the next day laden with food and she spent the time with me preparing food, making sure I was eating properly, listening to me, hugging me when the tears came and she left me with extra home cooked meals in the freezer.

Then another friend returned and on it went. I am on my knees in gratitude for these gifts of friendship.

Heartfelt thanks to John & Penny (in Vancouver), Cheryl, Nola, Randi, Cathy, Connie, Terry, Maurine, Heidi, Judith, Petrine and for the phone calls of encouragement from other friends as well.

You made a big difference in my life. Thank you.

For me, this surgery will have been worth the journey.

I am still in recovery and am not able to bend more than 90 degrees for three months, but I’m functioning quite nicely.

Fatigue walks alongside me as I heal, so I have lovely afternoon naps.

If you are hesitant to have a hip or knee replacement, have a good chat with your orthopedic surgeon—there are a lot of successes with this surgery as it does give you back your active life.

So remember, all the bones are indeed connected and they can be assisted in how they work helping the quality of your life to improve.

You are only as old as your body allows you to function.

Working body = active life. It feels good and I look forward to “Dem bones, dem bones gonna walk around.”

Carole Fawcett is a retired counsellor and freelance writer.

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