September 17, 2012 by archiesmith

I have been simply blown away by the huge wave of support, good healing wishes and offers of help that has swept over me.  Don’t let anyone ever tell you that the artist community is not one very large extended family and I find myself being graced and blessed by support from that wonderful family.  I am truly blessed and humbled.  I feel quite embarrassed to do this, but SO many people have asked if I have pay pal account.  The account is arcsmith@ctc.net  which is our non-business email account.  The account is in my wife, rose’s name, but she is busy trying to add my name.  PLEASE UNDERSTAND THAT THIS UPDATE IS NOT A SOLICITATION FOR HELP.

About my situation – I am doing well.  I went back to the doctor last wed. for the first time since surgery.  My hand was not a pretty sight to anyone but me and the doctor seemed to be pleased, but he really “threw a bucket of ice water” on me when he said that I was far from being out “out of the woods” with the hand.  He said that the next couple of months were critical and that if I did not take good care of the hand and let it heal properly then it was quite possible and even probable that I would lose the two fingers that he had reattached.  (as soon as I got back home I canceled all of my shows –and a much anticipated fishing trip- until late Oct.  there is a good chance that I will have to cancel my shows for the rest of the year.  That would be hard to do, but not as hard as losing the two reattached fingers.

(those with a weak stomach might wish to skip this part, but for those who are interested, will tell you what the good doctor did in the surgery.)  the saw blade apparently skipped across the hand – hit some of the knuckles where the fingers are attached to the hand, it mangled the little finger but did not cut all the way through the bone.  The worst cut was the one that cut all the way through the first knuckle beyond the hand on all three of the inside fingers.  The middle finger was pretty well shattered and the doctor removed it at the hand.  For the ring and index fingers the doctor removed the shattered knuckles, pulled the two ends of the bone together and fastened them with metal strips and screws, fusing them.  On the index finger the saw had ripped all of the flesh off of the top of the finger, so he filled it in with artificial collagen.  Next wed. back into surgery for a skin graft on that finger.

One interesting sideline on this –both my son and I have always been interested in biology. – he teaches biology in a community college.  So when this happened, we decided to document the whole thing, because, I told him, I certainly had no intention of doing it again.  Anyway, I took photos of the hand before surgery and then about a week and a half after surgery.  I also got my pre and post x rays.  They are really fascinating. –my wife thinks that we both are nuts.  Anyway, for his anatomy and physiology class, he is going to do a unit on the hand featuring his father’s hand.  Most of his students are nursing students so they should find it interesting.  Fyi, if any of you find this interesting, as I do, will be glad to send you photos and x rays. (did I tell you that my wife thinks that I’m nuts?)

Words simply have not been invented yet that will adequately reflect my appreciation for all of the kind and encouraging notes and support which you, my artist family, have offered me.  Thank you sounds so very inadequate, but I don’t know what else to say.  THANK YOU!

Archie Smith

Archie Smith Instruments

6590 hwy 73 E

Mt. Pleasant, NC  28124

704 436 8477  home

704 796 8309  cell

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