Friday, April 4, 2008


Irritating news: April 9 had been my red-letter day--- get the cast off and change to a walking boot-- and it was just postponed for almost a week later. Right now this feels like a big deal, but I know that in the very near future I won't even remember that it happened because I'll be caught up in the next challenge, the next phase of rehab, the next step forward.

I haven't had much to say about my rehabilitation process yet because there hasn't BEEN any rehabilitation to speak of, really. With this cast on, there's nothing to do for my ankle itself other than keep it elevated as much as possible for good circulation. When I had the cast put on two weeks ago, I was shocked to see how swollen the ankle was. Inside the post-surgical splint it had started to feel quite roomy, so I thought it would be almost normal size when they took it off, but it was actually very puffed up. No one else seemed surprised, so I decided not to worry about it. Even now there are drastic changes in how tight or loose the cast feels at various times of the day, which I guess is my signal that at least there's blood flowing down there.

Since my leg's been inside this hard black fiberglass thing I've been trying to make sure that (and this is almost a lost cause) my leg stays somewhat strong. It is amazing, just amazing, how quickly an appendage loses muscularity when it's not used, and especially when it's not even being stood on. I knew this was going to be the case, so I cooked up various exercises that I could do (without standing on my right leg) to keep those muscles activated. There's really quite a lot you can do! (Don't be alarmed, anyone, I'm very careful). Anyway, I'm sure it's helping somewhat but I still know that when I get the cast off in another ten days and see that leg for the first time I'm going to gasp at how shriveled, flimsy, and hairy it is. But it will come back, it will, it will, it will...

I do have photos of the actual surgery in process-- but perhaps they're too graphic to post here? I think so. I can't even bring myself to look at them yet. Something about seeing your very own flesh... yeah.

I have to add something. I just read an article in today's Oregonian about a man who was hit by a car and suffered such extensive injuries that his entire leg had to be amputated. I know that everything is relative, but I read that article and had to take a moment to feel extremely guilty for ever having complained about being in a cast for a mere five weeks.

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