Got back online this morning after a week out of town and find that you're scheduling surgery. Really, Mike, a simple concession note would have done just as well, but you have such a flare for the dramatic, I guess you had to go for the bold statement.
I can't help the bad joke. When a friend gets ill I get upset, and you are a friend, indeed. Humor helps. I'm glad you have the VA, the folks there are top notch, and it sounds like you're getting top notch treatment. The anti-biotics will quiet things down internally, if I understand the message at a bit of a remove, and then they'll be able to go in and assess the situation and do stage one of the fix. Maybe later they'll go back for stage two.
I hope everything goes very well indeed and that the pain that's been such a bother gets resolved. I hope that they're able to deal with the underlying issues simply and straightforwardly. I'll keep in touch. I am offering prayers. You already have my affection.
Love, Bob Kaven