I'm not that old. But, when I asked about my hip pain, they told me I had "bone on bone" problems in my hip. That scared me, and I knew enough about x-rays being interesting, but not the complete truth about how to proceed.

So, I did the normal thing – ask people, talk about it, and process my feelings. I went to one surgeon, who was cold, and told me that she'd do the surgery any way she wanted. That didn't work for me. Then I went to another, who was good, and finally, found one who was great. I won't go into it but I had a good cry with him about my hip and he had a good cry back about a recent death.

I knew I had a surgeon who was the genuine article, a person who was wired for joy. Then I asked Walt to come with me to the last session before deciding about the surgery, and I thought I had it all together, but he had a different take on it. Walt asked how it would be for me to have another cortisone shot and see if that could heal the tendinosis. The pain of that was what kept me awake at night.

Here is the beauty of that! I got the shot, put off the surgery, and was smarter about my body. I stopped exercising. I said, "I can love and groom the horse I am borrowing for now, but no riding." Instead of my usual, which is, "Why walk when you can run?" I measured my pace so as not to reinjure my hip/tendons.

I called yesterday and told them, "No surgery." The shot worked. The tendinosis is gone (about 90 percent), and the growing muscles in my hip are stabilizing it. Chances are, I'll have to have that surgery in in 3 to 330 months, but what's important to me now is that I have a reprieve.

January looks like a sunny month, no matter what the weather, and how grateful I am for a great surgeon, wonderful Walt, and the humility to walk, not run when my body tells me to do that! Pretty simple, but then most important things are.