Under the Knife! Or, my surgery is today, so I am playing the sympathy card to make you read this.

I write this in the lobby of the VA hospital on Green Street in Baltimore.

I found out last week, rather suddenly, that my surgery date had been set, and then moved up. Today is the day. This is a great thing; I can’t wait to be able to hike, walk normally, and maybe even go for a jog. I am sick of decrepit. That was SO 2011. 😉

This means I will have the opportunity to be fit to hike the C&O in November. Honestly, up until now, I was worried that I would be 50 before I had the chance to hike again.

So please wish me luck. I’ve never had more involved surgery than stitches or a root canal, and I am strangely anxious. I don’t get anxious about ANYTHING, either. If you know me in person, you know I have that Marine trait of laughing at nearly everything. Well I am not sure how I like the idea of anesthesia. Anyway, wish me luck, pray for me, or, if you can, come up with a good joke. It feels wierd not to laugh.

One final note, and this is something that I want to make sure to share with you all now.

I often get people telling me, in the context of discussing helping wounded vets, that they are outraged that the government doesn’t do more. I often hear sentiments like “These wounded vets should have the best, on the goverment.” or the like.

I don’t fault the sentiment, people, but I do have two points to make.

1) The US Veterans Adminsitration is unmatched in the world, probably in the history of the world, in the level of care and support it provides to veterans, wounded or otherwise. Seriously, the VA might have some bureaucratic shortfalls, but it is simply the finest organization of it’s type in the world. It fulfills the nation’s obligation to it’s veterans, in spades.

2) Veterans didn’t volunteer for the benefits, and if they did, they got what they paid for. The citizen soldier is the embodiment of the democratic ideal. I, and my brethren, volunteered to serve the nation. Some of us may not have fully understood what it was we were getting into, but we all, instictively, understand the ideal. That leads me to the corallary to this. If you think that volunteering like that is noble, and want to see these wounded vets get more than the VA can give, do something about it. It is YOUR personal responsibility to act on those feelings. Too often the debt we owe veterans seems distant and impersonal. Come visit the VA hospital if you need any reminder of what we gave you. All I ask from you in return for the infitessimal increment of your personal freedom that I am personally responsible for is that you exercise it, peacefully, and with the betterment of the nation in mind.

I, Terry Mahoney, do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.

Semper Fi.



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6 responses to “Under the Knife! Or, my surgery is today, so I am playing the sympathy card to make you read this.

  1. Elizabeth king

    You are amazing! I’d like to say that first. Secondly, I’d like to say that I totally get bein nervous about surgery. It took serious tranquilizers to get me to the OR last year for surgery. I took faith in that the anesthesiologist studied lloooong and haaaard and so did his nurse, in order to be able to do this, so you re in good safe hands.
    Many many prayers to you.
    And lastly, a joke. My husbands favorite:
    Two muffins are in the oven. One muffin says to the other muffin, “Is it getting hot in here?” the other muffins says “ahhhh! A talking muffin!”

    And another, not so clean, favorite:
    A pirate walks into a bar. Full on pirate gear; parrot, eye patch, bandana, float shirt, yOu get the idea… One exception is tht there a steering wheel down his pants!? The bar keep mr pirate,

    • Elizabeth king

      (I. Cut myself off, sorry!).
      … The bar keep proclaims, ” mr pirate! You have a steering wheel down your pants!”
      And the pirate says….
      ” AAAAAARRRRRGGGHHHH. I do! And it’s driving me nuts!”

      Hahahahahahah! I’m sure it’s better when told in person. I tend to like to go on and on describing the pirate. With a really loud ” arggggghh”. 😉 I hope these put a smile on your face! Heal well friend. May angela guide your surgeons hand and tell you sweet stories while you sleep. Hugs

  2. Mike

    Good luck Terry.

    Don’t worry about being nervous until you have a colonscopy.

  3. Vincent E. Savarese

    Good luck Terry. Here’s to your speedy recovery. Two cannibals were eating a circus clown and one looked at the other and said, “Does this taste funny to you ?”.

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