Yesterday was another new experiance for me, in my new world of being a below knee amputee. Not the greatest of experiances I have to say, but a definate learning curve! We had just come home from the gym after a very heavy, strength building back weights session. We had gotten changed and were on out way to do some shopping. Cat had gone to get the car as we left my chair in the boot because we were only going to be home for a short while. So all I had to do was make it the very short distance from my front door, through the hall, bum shuffle down the stairs, and then along the corrodoor downstairs to the car. A journey ive done loads of times. Everytime we go anywhere. I dont do this journey alone though. I cannot go out on my own because I only have 1 wheelchair and I cannot get that down stairs by myself. So my independance is completely in the hands of my wife, and the people that dont seem to think its important to be independant! (But thats another story!)
So I went out the door, realised id forgotten my wheeling gloves, so went back in the door, got them, and on the way back out it happened. The bottom of my left crutch just clipped the lip on the door. This was enough for me to loose balance, and before I knew it I went to put my foot down. But if course I dont have one, so instead it was stumpey that plumeted full pelt with 9 and a half stone me on the end of it, into the concrete floor! Im not normally lost for words, but I literally could not speak, or breathe for that matter. The pain was unbearable. Worse than any pain I have ever experianced. I eventually just lay on the floor kind of screaming and whimpering. I had to get back into my appartment. So I went in on my bottom. Leaving my crutches in the hallway. Cat was outside in the car. I had no way of getting to her. I ended up shuffling to the balcony door, opening it and just shouted for help. Whimpering away to muself in absolute agony. I was so terrified of taking off my shrinker and seeing what damage was done. Ive seen so many pictures of peoples wounds that have ripped open from falling, and I fell on concrete. We are supposed to have carpet back in the hall by now! Cat came running in. I managed to get myself on the sofa. She pulled off my shrinker and I was so happy to see that there was no blood. Stumpey was in tact. Thank goodness. Then, my lovely wife, trying to be helpful, did what I used to ask her to do when I had bad phantoms, grab hold of stumpey and rub, lots… So in her head, this helped when I was in pain before. It diddnt help this time! Agony all over again. Bless her. I could see that she diddnt know how to help. I couldnt stop crying and whimpering in pain. She went and got an ice pack, which still now im not sure if it helped or hindered. But in my head, it was doing something. I’d had all of my morphine. I have been used to 5mg every 4 hours lately, but on this occasion I opted for the full whack of 20mg. It diddnt do alot. I knew at this point that its probably best to get it looked at. I put a post on Amputees uk to see if others had done this, and what they did after. Well, practically everyone had done the same thing. This was really reassuring to know that im not the only person who totaly ignored all the medical professionals who said ‘dont use crutches, they are dangerous, and you will fall’! My lovely friend Liz advised me to go for an xray. So thats what we did. I shuffled all the way along the halls to get to the car. I wasnt going to use my crutches again. Evil things!
So off to A & E we went. It was absolutely packed. So I was completely shocked that it only took about an hour and a half for my whole experiance. I had an xray, and no breaks that they could see. Thank goodness. Im so happy about that. That would have been a nightmare. I dont want any set backs. The xray was interesting though. They were all so impressed with how amazing stumpey looks considering im only about 12 weeks post op. Have to credit Mr Cowan for that.
Well needless to say our shopping trip was off, as was the beach that we had planned to go to after. I really felt sorry for Cat. She was really looking forward to going to the beach, and again because of me, it was off. She was her usual graceful self, and told me not to worry about it, and that it wasnt my fault. But sometimes you cant help but to feel guilty. Especially as we had a conversation the night before about adjusting our 10 year holiday plan, because there are lots of places that I wont be able to go to now, if the CRPS is back, and I cant wear a leg all of the time! Im not one to ever be defeated by anything, as you may have gathered, but I think Everest basecamp in a wheelchair may be slightly difficult and out of my capabilities!
So this was my day. Laying on the sofa, popping pain meds, and with Cat trying her best to help with the pain. I think at this stage a mallet over the head would be best for her (to lop me with!). She could get some peace then instead of making me cups of tea (lol).
The moral of this day has been. Listen to your physio, Doctor, and every other amputee that has done this, and experianced the gut wrenching, agonising, vomit inducing pain, from falling on your stump, and DONT USE CRUTCHES!!!