Thursday, July 17, 2008

After the Fall

Perhaps some of you have been wondering where I've been (and if you haven't, then why are you reading my blog anyway?) Most of my friends know why I haven't been blogging the last few weeks---all those days, after the FALL. Here's the inside scoop for any of you who might have missed the whole story.

It all happened in California on a beautiful evening the last Saturday in June. My husband had gotten us tickets to the Symphony at the L.A. County Arboretium. Our four sons, my husband and I were walking into the venue. I glanced down in time to see a huge rock in my path. I moved my foot just far enough to the right to miss the rock. Unfortunately, I hadn't seen the 3" piece of metal (perhaps a sawed-off Stop sign post) that was lurking just behind it.

Of course, it caught my toe. I yelled my husband's name as I fell in slow motion toward the asphalt driveway. I scrambled my legs, hoping to keep my balance, but the pull of gravity and angle of my body had already conspired against me. My arms were up in front of my chest, elbows out.

SPLAT! My left elbow and left leg hit the ground full force. Then, BANG, the right side followed. I'm surprised my face didn't plant itself as well.

The next problem---I couldn't get up. Every muscle and bone in my body had moved into automatic shock, refusing to move. I had to be picked up and put into a chair. The Red Cross came, my husband the nurse looked me over, and we filled out some paperwork.

Honestly, I knew I was bruised, I thought I was sprained, and I knew my left arm was going to swell, so I pulled off my wedding ring and watch before they were stuck to my body forever. There was a weird sensation in my left arm, but I didn't think anything was broken.
My left arm was wrapped, and I hobbled to a spot on the grass to listen to the first half of the concert.

I spent the next two days of vacation in the hotel room, taking OTC pain meds, and I thought I was getting better. The drive home was uncomfortable, but I was black and blue so I expected some pain..

So, off to the doctor I go once we are home, and the X-ray shows I've chipped a piece of bone from my elbow. Should be no problem, but let's go to the orthopedic surgeon just to be sure. After all, it is my elbow, an important functioning piece of the anatomy.

Five days later (July 4th holiday, so no one was in the surgeon's office, you know), he tells me the break shouldn't be a problem to heal on its own. No surgery needed. I'm suddenly feeling much better, then he says, "Except, there seems to be some stray chips of bone that I don't know where they came from."

Next stop---a CT scan, then back to his office for a consult. Sure enough, there on the computer screen I watch as he shows both me and the other specialist the five pieces of my shattered radial ball scatter all over the screen. Yippee! I'm now scheduled for replacement surgery, but I can't get there until July 23rd.

In the meantime, my right arm and left leg are still killing me. Back to the doctor's office I go. Another X-ray. Nothing broken this time it seems, probably just a sprain (althought I still wonder if it's not dislocated because I can't straighten my arm after three weeks!) Deep bruising an tissue damage in my leg is causing swelling in my lef and foot. At times it feels like my skin is ripping like hundreds of layers of paper and that a stake is being driven into my foot at the same time. Lovely though, isn't it?

Today, the surgery is five days away, the radial bone (which turned out to be twisted) aches, my left foot and leg are now wrapped to match my left arm, and my right arm still protests if I move it too close to my body.

On top of all this, I have a two-day graduate class that I must attend and present for tomorrow and the next day (the professor says it's required!). At least my husband came home from his second business trip to L.A. The neighbors have been bringing in dinner, and I've found out that at least two of my boys are willing to help Mom when she needs it. (Two more of them WILL if I ask, but they don't come to check on me by themselves.)

Everyone assumes me that once the surgery is over, I'll feel great. I sure hope so, but until then, know you all know why I haven't been blogging, writing, reading, or doing much else of what I usually do. Hopefully, I'll be back up and running by the middle of August---before if I'm lucky.


Tamra Norton said...

Oh, LuAnn--that's just plain awful! I hope you're feeling better very soon. So sorry!!!

Annette Lyon said...

I already knew the story and STILL flinched. Hope you feel better VERY soon.

Stephanie Humphreys said...

Ouch! I hurt for you. I hope everything gets back to normal very soon.

Karen Hoover said...

Oh, LuAnn, that's terrible! I'm so sorry to hear you're hurting so much. I'll add you to my prayers. Get better soon!

Kimberly said...

I'll only just "met" you but I'm wincing like mad here. You'll be in my prayers!

Shaunda Wenger said...

Get better soon, LuAnn! How horrible. I should have known that the blow-by-blow from a writer would show me in excrutiating detail how painful the experience was. Good luck with everything and getting the right side taken care of 1,too.

Josi said...

Oh yuck--I'm so sorry. I scrolled down from the surgery photo to see what had happened--sounds awful. I hope you're feeling a big improvement quickly though.