So I broke my leg last thursday, December 8. Slipped on my son's winter boot he had left on some stairs, and down I went. Broke both the tibia and fibula on my right leg. I didn't know then that it was broken--i was hoping just sprained an ankle, but I knew something was wrong when my mom, who had been watching our kids, comes to the top of the stairs, and says, "Joe, do you need an ambulance? Yes, you need an ambulance." (Read that all in one breath, no pause.)
Now, there are a few funny things, and I encourage you to laugh at them (and me, too), because I find them funny. First off, my wife and I had just gotten home from my company's christmas party. Now, the funny thing about the christmas party is that it has an open bar, but I can't drink because I have to work at 11 pm, about 2 hours after I got home from the party. So I was sober, not even a sip of a beer. But since I was headed to the hospital, I wasn't going to work, so I had to call the guy who would do my job. Ironically, he has been back at work for only a couple weeks because he had back surgery a while ago and had to get that fixed up. Ok, technically, I had my wife call him, but I asked her to. What can I say? I'm a professional. Also, I had my wife call my boss to let him know, too. And him? On our way out of the party, he smiled as we walked by and told me to get to work. Irony much?
So there I was, right leg/foot/ankle hurting a bit, laying on the basement floor. I had been carrying a 5 gallon bucket when I fell, so I slid that under my knee to keep my poor appendage off the ground. I could look up the stairs to see my mother and my wife on their respective phone calls, and I was feeling like a really loser. But then a cop shows up--first responder and all that--who basically secures the scene and makes sure traffic isn't a problem. Got to talk to him a bit while we waited for the paramedics/emts to show up. He basically talked about nothing, but it was a nice distraction. Also, it wasn't the first time that I have been laying flat on the ground and looked up to see a cop standing there, but that's a story for another time.
(Hey, look, another time: So I was at work, trying to get a plugged drain to run. It wasn't completely plugged, thank goodness, but it was really slow. I had to reach down into the drain, grab handfuls of a mixture of fat and filteraid, and pull them out. Of course I had gloves on, but shorts sleeves, so it was messy. I was on my belly, arm down the drain as far as it would go, and suddenly there were two shiny black boots by my head, right in front of my face. I turn my head, and there are black uniform pants, a belt with a gun, a batton, and other stuff, a uniform shirt complete with a shiny badge, a smiling face, and policeman't hat. Kinda scared me, but more because he was not expected than anything else. But there you go.)
After the cop showed, the emts came. Now, the ambulance service around here is basically volunteer in nature. There are a couple of nurses that ride along, but most everyone else does it for free. So sometimes they show up peace-meal, other times all at once. This time, it was a slow trickling in, but enough folks showed up with enough stuff to get me taken care of. One of them was a good friend of my wife's, and a friend of mine, but she still helped me out. I got my boot off the hurt side, got a splint slipped around my leg, (From one of the emts: "Well, that's gotta be a good sign--his leg just went back into joint.")
I got to ride in an ambulance to the local ER, where we got x-rays taken, where they deduced it was in fact a spiral fracture of my tibia, and a possible fracture of the fibula. Probably needed surgery, but since they don't do that in town, I got to head in an ambulance an hour or so south to the nearest hospital where there were surgeons.
Spent the night there, in some pain, but drugs are wonderful ways to take enough of the edge of to make it ok. Not great, of course, but there is some kind of pain tolerance everyone has. Friday morning I got to see my friends Bob and Giddy before surgery, so that was cool. Giddy is an EMT, too, so he knew some of the people at the hospital, which is awfully funny when he shows up for a social visit, instead of a professional or business engagement. Surgery went well--couple brackets and screws, some stitches, and then recovery. I didn't feel a thing during surgery--got the spinal, but eventually the pain came back. More medicine!
I got discharged today with a prescription for painkillers, instructions for taking care of myself and the injury, and now I am at home. In some pain, but nothing that a prescription can't take care of.
Thanks for reading. I'll keep you all informed as we go, and I'll post what pics I can when I can.