Saturday 5 March 2022

Harder than I thought it would be

zimmer frame

Sunday morning of the 27th Feb, a gentle ride to marshall a sportive. An early start; I left the house around 7 a.m. Nearly to my post when I encountered some black ice. The roads until then had been dry and safe. This one had a puddle surrounded by the ice. I didn't appreciate that fact and went down hard. The driver behind me asked if I was okay, I knew I'd done some damage, I didn't know straight away how much. I tried to stand to pick up my bike, I was also sat in a cold fairly deep expanse of water. I got as far as being upright, but my left leg was weak and very painful; so I sat down very quickly.

The driver asked if he should dial 999, my immediate answer was yes. 

A runner was next on the scene, she organised some extra layers to keep me warm; a coat from the driver and a sheet from a delivery van that has also stopped. 

The ambulance arrived within about twenty minutes, it may even have been quicker. I was soon breathing in gas and air as quickly as I could. Some morphine helped when they lifted me onto the stretcher.

I was at hospital in no time being assessed. After many x-rays and a CT scan; the news wasn't good. The radiographer had to take two snaps of my chest because it appears I have extra long lungs. A broken hip would mean an operation and a long recovery, damn.

It all happened very quickly, I was waking up from the surgery by 6 p.m. The recovery started as soon as my walking aid was delivered on the Monday. I was given a competence test and cleared for moving around the ward. I also had physio moves to do whilst stuck in bed.

Six weeks on the zimmer frame with no weight on my left leg. Then hopefully two months on the exercise bike and I'd be on the road again. I'll need to build fitness and strength for the Solstice ride.

After a few days I have started to adapt to a life of hopping about. The self administered blood thinning injections cause a little anxiety. 

My family, neighbours, and friends including the newest from my cycling club are rallying around; it is truly moving. 

Somethings I have learned:

Using the zimmer frame is tiring, more than I thought it would be. It's good for building upper body strength though.

Using a small shoulder bag means I can carry stuff.

I now wear a cycling jersey, the three pockets on the back are great. Easily accessed and not compressed when you sit down.

Everything takes longer than expected.

My balance on one leg is getting better.

You will have dark days when it all seems too much. A quote present in the books I read is very true. It never gets worse all the time. The situation will improve.

When people offer help; accept it. It comes from a good place and you know you'd offer the same if the roles were reversed.

It takes time to heal, so celebrate each small improvement.