Becoming Hip!

Getting all the tests and paperwork in order before my hip surgery had taken its toll since I have very little patience when it comes to making phone calls and playing phone tag. However, that turned out to be a blessing in disguise because the night before surgery I was too worn out to worry. I fell asleep and bright and early the next morning my girlfriend and I arrived at the hospital to begin the adventure.

Going into a hospital knowing you’re going to be operated on is a weird feeling. Everything is a bit surreal; the lights seem very bright, the hospital staff is scurrying around on a multitude of missions and suddenly you become the focal point. A nurse approaches and asks your name while she checks a chart she is holding. After it is determined that you are you a wheelchair appears and off you go into the surgery waiting area. A momentary touch of fear flashes through your mind then two other nurses appear and gently you are moved to a bed. At this point I said goodbye to my girlfriend who had to leave the surgery prep area and as I watched her walk away I prayed I would see her again later.

By now my mind had slipped into the “okay, let’s get going” mode and as they placed an IV tube into my arm I knew it was only a matter of time and I’d be out. Slowly I began to drift away and my last memory was one of being rolled down a long bright hallway on a bed surrounded by nurses.

The next thing I knew was that I was in a hospital room hooked up to a bunch of machines and my right side was numb. I tried to fight through the anesthesia but it was too heavy so I drifted off to sleep only to be awaken by a team of nurses and my girlfriend.

I breathed a sigh of relief knowing that I had survived even though I could feel a huge bandage on my right leg and I had a breathing tube in my nose and more tubes running out of me than I could count. It was a feeling of being in a dream watching yourself.

I knew where I was, who I was, and who the people in the room were, but I felt like they were merely characters in some medical drama. I tried to speak but no words would come out right, I knew I was babbling because of the looks on the peoples faces but I wasn’t afraid anymore.

I was in a state of semi-consciousness much like dreams I had as a child. I wasn’t hungry or thirsty or sleepy or awake; I just was there floating. I felt my girlfriend’s lips on my cheek and slipped down the sleepy slope into unconsciousness.

However, that didn’t last long as I was awaken by a nurse who needed to check my vital signs. Thus I began my stay as a patient with a new body part taking the first big step in becoming hip!

To reach Rick Schultze email: yarick@pioneer.net


Rick Schultze

A few years ago at a writers conference held in the central Oregon coast town of Yachats, where I live, I listened to the late Ken Kesey, a frequent visitor to the area, tell a writer that this could be a hard place to write. “If you think you can sit there staring at the ocean for inspiration you’re wrong, it’s not out there, it’s in your head!” He was right; it is beautiful here in Lincoln County, the kind of beauty that makes concentrating on anything else tough and since hearing that insight, I’ve written at a desk facing a wall, no windows opening onto a ocean view, although I have one, but it’s worked. I’ve done, and do, different kinds of writing. As a freelance writer I’ve been a observational columnist, a humor columnist, a book and music reviewer for newspapers, magazines, and online. However, as a creative writer, my heart belongs to fiction. In that genre I do short stories, road adventure stories, musical adventure tales, and in current production, are three small novels. So really the purpose of this web site is to give you a glance of some of the things I’ve done, a preview of what’s coming, and hopefully, a view of what it’s like to be a writer living in a small town on the Oregon coast!