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SKIN AND BONE

 

Photo by Richard Hines

Photo by Richard Hines

Richard Hines arrived promptly at 8:00 a.m. announced by Alice’s usual frenzied barking. Richard and I have committed to a collaborative art project called Skin and Bone. Richard’s photography; my skin and bone, my text. This morning we will concentrate on my bathing, a ritual and a pain management strategy.  The pictures accompanying this post are taken while lying on the bed in our second floor bedroom. I have found that lying still, and strategically moving Fiona (the heating pad) to various pain centres brings relief.

I have stage four flat foot and osteoarthritis in my hips. My left foot was reconstructed last January, a foot bone fusion, involving one bone graft (source taken from my knee) and many long screws. Waiting for Dr. Hammond was worth it.  I now have an arch where there was none and the danger of eventually walking on my ankles removed, and I again can wear a size 13 shoe.  A similar though slightly less difficult surgery is scheduled to reconstruct my right foot. The surgeons have been clear that all surgery is traumatic violence against the body. I have had seven surgeries since the age of three, and have three more coming up in 2013. The right foot surgery is scheduled for February 28th and the right hip replacement surgery for June 14th.  We are hopeful that Richard will be attending with his cameras.

Photo by Richard Hines

Photo by Richard Hines

We are exploring the effects of trauma on the body through our respective art practices. Richard has discovered a University of Winnipeg professor conducting research on a similar subject. He will be meeting with Angela Failler on February 15th to discuss her research and our art project. Her research explores how trauma re-enacted through the body is represented in and worked through artistic practice and mediated forms including film, photography, and video art. I have an appointment with my GP for a pre-op physical on the morning of Valentines Day, and all signs point to the surgery actually taking place this time, after having been bumped a few times. This will be followed by a three month recovery period. It is important to have two good feet to stand on for the mobility needed for rehab ater the hip replacements.

 

 

 

 

 

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