Thursday, January 25, 2018

Going On The Disabled List

This is my right arm in a splint.

I slipped on my steps, and this is the result. I'm sure you're thinking, with the snow and cold weather, Sean, you need to be more careful walking outside. Of course, this actually happened when I fell on steps inside my home.

Let's set the scene. It was about 6:20 AM on Thursday morning, and I was on our main floor getting The Moose (age 6) breakfast. Meanwhile, Pedro Tulo wasn't making any effort to start the day, so I went upstairs to get him. As I was carrying the three year old down the hardwood steps wearing my old slippers with little tread, I slipped and slid down about four steps. I fell on my wrist and had the additional weight of Pedro Tulo landing on top of it. Pedro Tulo started crying but we quickly determined that he was just shaken up by the fall and was completely fine. Meanwhile, I figured that my pain would wear off in a few minutes and I would be fine. The pain did not wear off, so I went to the ER.

I have no good stories from the ER, only that they did X-rays and found that there was no break. They gave me a splint, the name and number for an orthopedic doctor, and sent me on my way.

Despite taking ibuprofen, I was still in pain throughout Thursday. On Thursday night/Friday morning, I don't think I slept for more than a 30-minute stretch because I just couldn't get comfortable. My right hand was basically useless. Therefore, for my Friday morning doctor's appointment, I decided not to drive and took a Lyft for the first time, and I have to admit that I enjoyed the experience.

The orthopedic doctor did several exercises with my wrist, mostly causing even more pain, but also gave me some type of shot so he could twist my wrist even more. He then gave me an order to get a CT scan/MRI. 

Fast forward to Monday and my wrist felt better. I still couldn't rotate it, but I was (barely) able to tie my shoes. I got the MRI done, and when the doctor's office received the results, they called me to schedule an appointment to come in. My thought was: This can't be good. And it wasn't. In talking with this doctor on Monday and a hand specialist on Tuesday, I learned that I have a complete dislocation of the radial ulnar joint. Basically, it's a broken joint in my wrist. This is going to seriously hurt my chances of becoming a hand model!

The big issue is that I cannot rotate my wrist. Who knew that rotating your wrist is so important? The only way to fix this for adults is surgery, and my right wrist/arm is going to be useless for some time (I'll explain more below). Right now, I can't pick up my 4 month old, Luigi, because I have no strength in my wrist. This has been particularly devastating since we really bonded over the last few weeks as I had been home with him. I can't get him in and out of his crib or his clothing. I'm not sure how to feed and burp him with only one hand either.

Here are other things I can't do:

- Open most food packages, most notably the applesauce packets Pedro Tulo eats every morning.
- Type with my right hand
- Put in my contact lenses

I've shaved twice since the accident and while not awful, the results haven't been great.

The doctor also said that I should get slip on shoes since I won't be able to tie them.

I need to figure out how to do things with only my left hand and quickly. 

I'll get surgery over the next few days and will likely wear a cast for 4-6 weeks. That will be followed by physical therapy. The doctor said it would be 3-6 months to get back to using my wrist normally. That's a long time. I mean, the Pittsburgh Pirates could trade most of their veteran players before my wrist heals completely.

Wish me luck...and for clothes and shoes that are easy get on and off!

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