Is Plan B working?…Kissing and hugging…

He appears well-nourished and healthy.  He doesn’t devour the pellets as quickly as the others.

“Sighting of the Day in the Bush”

Little came up on the veranda looking for me, already positioned on his knees for some treats.

How did I get so lucky to have these great doctors here in South Africa? Who would have thunk?

Yesterday when we went to see Dr. Theo check on the infected incisions in both of my legs, he greeted me with a kiss and a hug. He knows how grateful I am that he saved my life.  

I don’t recall a doctor kissing and hugging me in my old life except for an uncle who was a doctor. In the US, this could be construed as sexual harassment and considered totally inappropriate.  

It is common for men and women to greet those they like, love, or admire with the warmest of hugs and kisses. I love this! But, not here in South Africa.

Three female bushbucks are sharing pellets.

There was a time many years ago in Minnesota when my family doctor, Dr. Parsons, hugged me goodbye at my last appointment when he was retiring the next day. I was so touched by the hug that I hadn’t forgotten it two decades later.

I imagine some people prefer not to greet others with such physical warmth and affection.  Those people are easily spotted by their body language or simply tossing out a hand for a handshake. That’s OK too. That degree of affection may not be suitable for everyone.

For me, this warm greeting put me at ease. Of course, I’m concerned about the infections. Who wouldn’t be, especially after this big operation when so much can go wrong for many weeks or months following the surgery.

Dr. Theo Stronkhurst is quite a special human being and physician. He gave me his personal email and phone number, suggesting I call him with any concerns.  He gave me tremendous peace of mind, especially when he’s the man that saved my life.

After examining my legs, he felt I didn’t need to go into the hospital, but to ensure my safety, he took photos of my legs and sent them to the surgeon in Nelspruit.  

A fourth bushbuck enters the garden.  She is the one we call “Friend” since she never has a baby or a mate but hangs around with moms and babies. For all, we know she could be the grandma since her coat is littler and she looks older.

They both agreed I could be treated from here without a hospital stay but must follow all the guidelines we already had in place; the strongest antibiotics suitable for this type of infection to be taken every 12 hours, followed by a dose of prescription probiotics an hour later; a twice-daily antibacterial wash and antibiotic cream followed by the application of sterile bandages until the wounds close. Of course, this includes wearing the compression stockings until bedtime for at least the next two weeks.

As for the walking program, I can begin again as soon as the pain is lessened enough to do so.  In the interim, I must sit with my legs up atop a few pillows and get up frequently for short walks around the house.  

Another thing was to stop fighting taking the non-narcotic pain pills and get on a more regular schedule to “stay ahead” of the pain. Stress and discomfort impede the healing process. The pills make me sleepy and dumb me; I tried to tough it out, which is not recommended after this massive operation. I am totally dedicated to this routine.

This morning when Louise sent a message that there would be a power outage today beginning at 9:00 am, I got up knowing I needed to take off the bandages and send the photos promptly at 10 am. Fortunately, I had enough data left on the SIM card in my phone to send the photos.

Little entered the scene, anxious for more pellets;

I waited patiently for a response after the two doctors reviewed them together. No more than 15 minutes later, Theo sent an email stating I’m good for today, and they were both optimistic I would heal without further intervention. Tomorrow at 10 am, I’ll send more photos of the progression overnight and again wait to hear if I am good to continue as is.  

Knowing these two doctors are taking time out of their own weekends, both Saturday and Sunday, means the world to me. I feel I am in good hands.

After the appointment ended at 1730 hours (5:30 pm), we drove to Jabula to meet Kathy and Don and Linda and Ken for dinner. It was my first time out to dinner since the surgery, and no words can describe how warmly we were greeted with hugs and kisses by owners Dawn and Leon, their excellent staff, Lyn and Melissa, and more, and many patrons who’d dropped in for dinner and drinks. 

Wildebeest Wille gets along with everyone as long as they don’t confront him.

After a fantastic dinner and conversation as always, we headed home to get my feet up, eat my last piece of low-carb cheese pie and watch a few shows on my laptop to definitely be repeated tonight when Tom helps me bake a new pie today. Eating a slice of this pie is helping me maintain my weight which is essential after this surgery.

Tonight Tom is making taco salads on this hot and humid day. That sounds perfect to me!

And thanks to all of our worldwide readers for bearing with me and all of these health-related posts. In time, we’ll be back on the move again, in 56 days, to be exact.

Have a great weekend, and above all, be well.

Photo from one year ago today, March 16, 2018:

This newspaper article appeared in yesterday’s local paper after we attended snake school. Tom did the snake-handling while I took notes and photos. For more details, please click here.

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