To Hawgcotton and everyone else

I have napped a couple of times today. I’m trying to catch my breath after a long weekend. Lots of driving. There is no good way to get to and from Starkville.

I have not done a whole lot today. I have reflected on what I saw on the field. That was a long way to drive to see a performance like that. I haven’t seen too many that rival it as far as level of poor play in the 27 seasons of Hawgs Illustrated.

First, I want to say thank you to Hawgcotton for mentioning me in the note that I saw when I opened the board today. It was a great message. I didn’t expect to be included. So thank you.

I want to make sure everyone knows how much I appreciate good thoughts from everyone else as I have battled through this football season. It has been a personal battle and that has nothing to do with the state of the football team.

I guess I should provide an update. I’m getting better, but I just find myself tired a lot. I guess when you spend too much time resting the first thing you do is find out that you need to get going. I know that’s true, but I’m not doing a very good job of getting myself going.

There was a breakthrough this weekend in that I was able to clean my wound by myself. It was a case of needing to do it because I was not going to ask Jean Ann to make the trip and I wasn’t going to ask anyone else to dress my wound on this trip. I suppose a co-worker would have done it, but I wasn’t going to ask.

It’s funny, but my doctor told me last week to suck it up and do it myself. So I did. You would have laughed out loud watching. I prepared the gauze on the big bandaid that is required, then laid it on the bed. Then I positioned my body as I was falling back onto it. After missing about three times, I got it and then smoothed it down. Success. That was Friday night. I hit it right Saturday night on the first try. Jean Ann was impressed when she saw my work Sunday night when I got home after the drive.

A long trip driving is about the worst thing I can do for what I’ve got, but it wasn’t really that awful. I don’t feel any pain with the wound except for a rash where the adhesive has been placed over and over around the wound. We try to move it to a new place each time, but sometimes you just don’t do a good job. Jean Ann does a good job sometimes with a much bigger application and some soft tape outside the rash area where the tape and bandaid has been over and over.

The wound is closing. I’ve still got three or four weeks to go. But it’s much smaller than say three weeks ago. It still bleeds and the gauze does its job. But that’s what happens as new skin is being developed. I have learned a lot about the process.

It’s interesting to see the doctor’s reaction when I come in each week. Of late, he’s been excited. He tells me it will close quickly at this point. His definition of quickly and mine are not the same thing!

I’m going to make the Missouri trip up and back driving in the same day. So I guess maybe I won’t have to change my dressing any more. It will be a long day – but that’s the best way I know to handle this last game. (Yeah, I know my version of a long day may not have anything to do with watching this team play. No pun intended.)

I’m glad to hear that you are getting better, Clay. I know that it has been a long tedious process, but it’s great to hear about the improvement.

Glad to hear you’re doing better, Clay. Must’ve been a nasty infection.

Glad you’re improving…very glad. That being said, a video of you “falling back onto your bandage” might have gone viral and provided huge entertainment for your loyal followers. Oh, well… :slight_smile:

Clay, I am so glad to hear about your recovery and thanks for including us. Your details also provide a mix of fact and humor.

On a personal note, I had toe surgery the day before LSU game which was quickly followed by shingles the day before miss state game. I told my wife that the shingles was maybe the most painful thing I had gone thru in a while, but after thinking abt this football season, I quickly changed to 2nd most painful!

Here’s to everybody’s recoveries and ability to bury this 2018 football season quickly on friday.

Any surgery is serious. If they have to knock you out to do the surgery, it’s serious. I am so glad they put me to sleep for mine, a procedure called debridement.

I have never had shingles, but my dad had it and he was in awful pain. It is nasty stuff.

As for the video, if there had been someone there to take the video, there wouldn’t have been a need for me to dress my wound. They could have done it!

The hilarious part is me walking into the Tupelo Marriott with my Walmart sack full of bandages, gauze and bandaids. I don’t really know what’s going to be needed each day. Or, put it this way, I’m prepared for about everything that is possible. The gauze now is a small pad that is packed into the hole. It’s not nearly as big as it was six weeks ago when a big wad of several pads was needed. Now, it takes only one small square pad of gauze, then a big bandaid over it. The wound used to be a big oval the shape of a football big enough and deep enough to put a whole egg into – maybe six inches wide, six inches tall and 4 inches deep. Now, it’s a small triangle that is not real deep and maybe two inches wide at the top only a tiny opening at the bottom. The base – where the wound is the narrowest – is closing fast. It is closing exactly how the wound surgeon predicted and he’s happy.

I have studied all of the different types of bandaids, styles and other ideas that might work better for a one-man application.

The doctor told me the “lay on the bed” trick. I saw Dean Weber at halftime and he inquired how I was doing. He said the other trick that he’s given football players is to tape a bandage to the wall and back up to it. That would work, too.

Dean, the long-time UA trainer, said he’s seen every wound, every possible result from infection and has seen the debridement done on football players infections many times. He described some of it. That was a beautiful conversation! You’d have to have been there to enjoy it. When Dean says he’s seen it all, he literally has. He went into details on different players and their surgeries and recoveries and that is toes, hands, elbows, wrists, feet, knees, legs, hips, ribs, shoulders and head wounds. Again, yuck!

Sometimes you need to hear this stuff to know you don’t have it so badly. I guess I did Saturday at halftime.

Nothing like acquiring an expertise in a new skill! Not that you want to sit around family gatherings and demonstrate your bandaging skills.

Glad you are doing better, Clay.

Clay, you’re right: any surgery is serious. In the past 20-plus years, I’ve had somewhere around 30 surgeries. Every time I go into one, I am very aware that I might not come out of it. One time, I even coded while on the table. Thankfully, the Good Lord was not through with me and gave the doctor the knowledge of what to do in that situation. My wife said she knew when she heard the “Code Blue” call that it was me. Unless someone has been through that and had to hear those chilling words from their loved ones, it is hard for them to understand just how that tore at my heart. All of this happened in a so-called “minor surgery” compared to the others I’ve had.

Life is precious. I wish more people would love it more and respect the fact that it could end at any moment.

I am glad you are getting better. Infections are hard to beat, but with time can and will heal. Happy Thanksgiving to you and the rest of the WHS/HI nation!

Prayers for continued improvement Clay!

Glad to hear you are getting better, Clay!

Glad to hear you’re better and hope our football team recovery goes as well as yours has been. WPS

Hang in Clay, you’re Hawg tough! Eat plenty on Thanksgiving to build up your strength for the Columbia trip…

Good to hear that you’re making progress. Wounds are nasty and slow to heal. Prayers for continued healing.

And Happy Thanksgiving!

Glad you are doing better Clay, but sounds like you still gotta ways to go. I’m sure you know your limits.
Take care man,
Now I’m trying to get a visual in my mind of your wound packing technique as you described it.

Glad that your recovery is going so well, Clay, and so sorry that you have had to endure this malady. Best wishes for a speedy and complete recovery. One concern I have (and probably should not, since the doctor would surely have done something if it is a concern) is with the accompanying rash that you described. Hopefully it is not a case of latex (from the adhesive on the tape) intolerance, which can develop into something more serious. Might consider asking the doctor just to be on the safe side. Again, best wishes for a speedy recovery.

We have talked about latex. It’s just 6 weeks of bandages. We will be done with this soon.

And I now understand that soon may not mean one day, one week or one month.

Does anyone understand patience? Ok, maybe this is a big picture question.

I have read about patience in several books.

I meet up with patience while I sleep.