What Recovery Looks Like
It has been about 2 months since my bicycling crash. These are the injuries I am recovering from:
Initially, I spent 3 days in the hospital. I was send home and on bed rest until this week. At first I wasn’t able to get out of bed on my own. I then progressed to moving with a walker and talking walks down the sidewalk in front of my house.
I had a follow up appointment with my ortho MD 4 days ago. I had more x-rays. The good news is that I’m healing. The bad news is that I am not fully healed. I was given the OK to weight bear on my right side and I could ditch the walker and use a cane for stability. A few days later I had my first physical therapy appointment. I was told I could walk without the cane. I now walk without the cane at home but I find I still need it in public for stability and safety.
Both the ortho and PT have given me the ok to “Push It.” I REALLY clarified what they meant and what my limits are. I am to avoid sharp pain. And I was told that I’m going to hurt and be really really sore. They were right. The physical therapist also told me I was going to have to learn to walk up and down stairs without the cane. I came home and practiced immediately.
The weird thing about removing some of the movement restrictions is that I have to learn to do certain movements all over again. It took me about a week initial to pick up my leg and take a step up a stair. I would stand at the base of my staircase and try to will my leg to move. The only way I could move it initially was to pick my leg up and move it with my arms. If you’ve seen the movie Kill Bill vol. 2 it reminds me of when Beatrix Kiddo (Uma Thurman) is in the truck after her coma willing her big toe to move. www.youtube.com/watch?v=XNg6v-mL_o0
I am about to walk around my neighborhood very slowly. The pace is made even slower because I have to be very deliberate in my body’s movements. I have to keep my feet pointed forward. My feet cannot point out or in as it will irritate my fractures. I have to keep my core engaged to support my back as my muscles are separated. I think about keeping my shoulders back as they want to roll forward. I suppose I could move a bit faster if I didn’t have to walk so intentionally. But, body alignment is crucial. I also have a series of isometric strength exercises from my PT that I am to do 6x a day. I also have mobility work that I do to open my shoulders and restore proper core function.
I do hurt. I am really sore. If one more person tells me to take it slow I might hit them with my cane. I would NEVER deliberately push it. I will not set back my healing. But, at this point I need to move my bones, muscles, fascia, and connective tissues to heal. Yes, some things still really hurt. When I feel this I stop. But, I won’t know what I can’t do until I know right? And those limits change every day.
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