Now comes the hard part, living with my leg splint for the next six weeks. The last time I did this was in 1962 when I dislocated my right knee. Back then when one had a limb injury, a cast was placed on the injured limb. I had a cast from my hip to my ankle . . . . . for six weeks. This time I have an adjustable leg brace. Plastic splints are on both sides of the foam wrap which is secured with Velcro.
My injured left leg has to stay in the same position for at least six weeks for the ligaments to heal. At least that's how long I had to have the cast when I dislocated my knee back in 1962 and all I did was stretch my ligaments. I won't know the extent of my ligament damage until after I get an MRI taken of my leg which is schedule for this Monday. The following Monday I meet with my orthopedic surgeon after he analyzes my MRI's. He said there could be minimal damage which, if that is the case, the ligaments will heal on their own. If there is more extensive damage, then I will have to have surgery. Let's hope for the minimal damage scenario.
So here is what it is like living with a leg splint. Simply put, I can't do what I used to take for granted. One of the big things is just sitting at my computer, updating my blog, checking other blogs, my e-mail, sorting my photos and surfing the Internet. I can't sit here too long because it is so uncomfortable. Thank goodness I'm not in pain. I have two prescriptions for Percocet which I haven't filled and won't fill unless I'm in extreme pain. And the only times I've been in extreme pain is four times so far:
- Once when I fell on the ice.
- The second time when I fell inside the hotel lobby and couldn't get up.
- The third time when the EMR guys put me on the stretcher.
- The fourth time when I got home. I fell hard in my bedroom coming out of my bathroom and I turned the corner too fast falling against the subwoofer of my surround sound system and said sub woofer taking a piece of dry wall out.
Do you know how lucky I am not to have fallen on my head or broken my hip? I am lucky . . . . so far. However, I am being VERY CAREFUL maneuvering myself around the our house.
I'm finding that I'm adjusting quickly to the new reality of my limited physical movement. I find ways around having to keep my left leg stiff in a brace. I'm getting just a small taste of what it is like for someone who is permanently disabled and I'm telling you, I have a new empathy for those people. I have a new appreciation for my former physical ability where I was able to move around at will and not even think about it. Now when I eat, go to the bathroom or go to bed . . . those activities take careful planning lest I twist my knee/leg again and cause more damage.
I have to end this blog post now because my back is killing me from sitting this way with my left leg straight out.
Again, when something like this happens to me I always think of how much worse it could be. And I am thankful that it wasn't worse.
Hopefully soon I'll be able to get back to my happy blog posts of my recent trip to California. But for now, I'm coping as best I can with this situation. And again, I warn everyone: be very careful when walking outside and make sure you have your cell phone with you in case you fall. In an happen in an instant and you would just be a phone call away from a disaster. Take it from me, I know and I have lived to tell about it.