Dear Reader,


I have gone above and beyond to research this blog. In fact, I am so impressed with my own commitment that I expect a small choir of angles to descend upon me at any moment and congratulate my devotion to this lodge.


I have undergone surgery in order to see why one really needs a recovery lodge. I think the general public would have benefitted from me getting a bit of plastic surgery, a little nip and tuck in the half-a-century-old face, maybe an upliftment of the boobs and some lipo suction on the muffin top would have been advantageous to all who have to endure looking at me, but alas alas, I just had knee surgery. Here I am on the other side of recovery for a change – not as a carer, but as a patient.


Full disclosure: I tried everything to prevent the surgery for a few months (well everything apart from crystals, essential oils and unicorn dust) but in the end, I had to admit defeat and got pushed into an MRI to see what was causing my pain. Without any doctor ever looking at my knee in real life, the surgeon looked at the results and with whatsapp communication only, we set a date for the surgery. It was that simple, I was that lucky.


The entire process from getting authorisations, to pre-admission, to being admitted, rolling into theatre, getting to listen to my favourite song while the anesthetist put me under, to waking up, getting a little triangle sandwich, fabulous pain drugs and excellent care afterwards was wonderful.


And then the recovery started.


A recovery at home…(hear the two chords from the JAWS theme song here) is wonderful if you have a lot of support, an easy lay-out at home, and are generally healthy, if you are surrounded by your own things and are comfortable in your surroundings HOWEVER:


In order to keep things simple, I have compiled a list of why it is easier to recover at the lodge and not at home where you are at the mercy of husbands and teenagers and pets:


  1. When you are naked, sitting on the edge of the bathtub, trying to get your pj’s on, you won’t suddenly realise there is no way to get up as one of your teenagers is racing around on your crutches in the next room. I promise you, despite me and the team loving the odd wheelchair race or crutches-Olympics, we only do this with our own equipment… and no one is ever left naked anywhere.


  1. When you are with us, no family member will constantly help themselves to the delicious choc-chip-cookies and brownies the physios have sent you and NOT to your entire family. We will hide all your treats from your family, we promise.


  1. When you arrive back from the hospital, my team will not collapse in mirth when they see you in your very unattractive and unflattering disposable surgery panties. They will not try them on and parade up and down the hallway, flaunting their perfectly functioning knees. =


  1. When you ask our team for ice, they will not continuously ask you if you want gin with it, or quote the famous “met eish ja” Klipdrift meme. We just go, fill your ice bag and bring it. No puns. Ever.


  1. When our carers spend time with you, they do not actually get into the bed with you. This simply does not happen. We understand boundaries.


  1. When you hand in your discharge papers to us, no one makes interesting comments about your weight and height in front of a room full of people so that you want the earth to swallow you immediately.


  1. When you are with us, and struggling at snail’s pace to move from the bedroom to the bathroom, no one will suddenly start singing the theme song of Chariots of fire at top volume, or shout, “Run Forest run!” We do a lot of cheerleading, but we add a touch of decorum, and reserve our sarcasm for debtors and suppliers, never our guests.


  1. When you recover at the Lodge, you will not have to die of curiosity every time the doorbell rings. Unlike in my home, you will not be left in terrible anticipation until the “carer” brings you the flowers, gifts or card that have arrived for you. With us, if a delivery comes for you, you get it right away. No one will dilly-dally, read the card or make a cup of tea on the way to delivering said gift.


  1. When you are with us, there are no “fashion-police-jokes” about your post-surgical stockings. In fact, if you are NOT wearing the stockings you might feel a bit of peer pressure to acquire some.


  1. With us, there are no intellectually challenged dogs that want to get onto your lap at all costs, and we only allow for dogs that you have particularly vetted to visit you.


  1. At the Recovery Lodge, you are not forced to follow your own rules made in optimum health and with functioning legs; like that you will never eat in the bedroom and only a death certificate excuses you from the dinner table. We are gracious and flexible.


  1. You will be in another environment, so will not be plagued by guilt if you are lying, literally with your legs in the air, doing nothing, while everyone else works hard.


  1. We will assist you in finding the right therapist based on your personality type and needs, unlike the way my offspring encouraged me to choose with only one requirement:  “Make sure he is hot”.


  1. Our carers never play “ching chong cha” to determine who makes the tea or brings the pain meds. They just smile and get it for you. There is never a debate about who did the last “servant-run”.



  1. We have a sense of humour, but not a wicked one. As a little joke in my house, the loo roll in our bathroom was replaced by the cling wrap roll I left in the bathroom after wrapping my knee before bathing. Yes, it was funny… for a few seconds. No, it was not funny when I had to phone someone to take pity on me and bring me loo paper.


  1. When doing your exercises with great discipline and concentration, our carers will not think this is an opportunity to play “Charades” and guess what your exercises mean… I was compared to a donkey having a stroke, a bridge catching fire or my favourite, a Dutchie surfing to a Kurt Darren tune.


  1. With our carers, there is no history and therefore no opportunity for generational comparisons. I have had to tell my teenagers several times over the last few days that I taught them to walk, so they better not try to correct my gait now.


  1. Our carers do not roll their eyes and nudge each other in the ribs, even if our guests are spectacularly clumsy and have remind themselves with a little rhyme as to what foot goes first and how to remember where the crutch must be.


  1. Our carers do not pretend to care about your well while wishing you would hurry up and be better by sneakily -asking probing questions like; “So when did the doctor say you can come off the crutches?” or “What do you think your recovery time will be?”


  1. And because of our great back-up invertors and generators you will never be left alone, in the bathroom, in the dark, with no way to get help. Luckily for me, when this happened to me, I had a wonderfully loud fall as I spectacularly crashed to the floor with my crutches Everyone woke up and could assist me to my bed where they hoped I would make a miraculous and immediate recovery.



As you can see, this blog was written in jest. I am incredibly blessed (dare I use this cliched word?) to have my family close by and wanting to take care of me, my friends bringing flowers and meals and visiting me. It was/is an easy, straight forward recovery, but I also know that it would have been easier at the Recovery Lodge. I would have felt less guilty for bothering my people all the time and would have felt safer in an environment where carers do this kind of thing all the time. I also realise how much we take it for granted to have all four limbs working properly and how even a slight injury like mine can affect every aspect of your life.