May 9, 2011

If Only My Jaw Were My Biggest Problem...

Last Thursday I went rollerskating with one of my friends, my sister and her fiance.  My husband came too, but he didn't want to skate.  I suspect he didn't want to look foolish.  I used to love to skate, but I hadn't been on skates in 15 years.  God that makes me sound old!

My girlfriend got it in her head that she wanted to join the local girls' roller derby.  Of course my friend had never been on skates before when she made the decision, but that's beside the point...  I told her I would practice with her, but derby was out of the question for me because I can't think of too many more reckless things to do for pudendal neuralgia.  One fall on my butt and I could become infinitely worse.

A girl who looked like a member of the derby, with the pads and uniform.  She came onto the rink, swept around behind me, then for some reason, she decided to push off on me.  I was not prepared for it.  It threw me right off my skates and I landed directly on my left wrist.  I landed just behind my wrist guard.  I felt a pop and I knew it was broken.

It started swelling immediately.  I started screaming, please take my wrist guard off me.  The girl who pushed me down told me she was afraid she would hurt me.  (Ironic)  I was rocking myself and wailing.  The pain was unbelievable.  I managed to rip the Velcro straps off and free my wrist.  I was terrified to look at it.  My husband ran out on the ring, got me out of my skates and got me on my feet.  Apparently there is no protocol at the rink for what to do when a patron is injured.  I was shocked about that.  I wanted to get the girl's information, but I didn't ask.  I was too busy crying.

As we drove to the emergency room I kept thinking, "Oh my God, I've ruined everything!  How am I going to get through school?" 

The nurse practitioner confirmed my worst fear: I broke my radial bone just below my wrist.  He set it with a temporary cast and referred me to an orthopedist.  I was given two shots of Dilaudid, which did nothing for the pain, but did calm me down. 

That night I lay awake in horrible pain.  The next morning I was able to get an appointment with the orthopedist.  He put me in a new cast that goes above my elbow and locks my arm at a 90 degree angle.  He told me I would be in a long arm cast for three weeks, then a shorter cast for the next three weeks. 

I called my clinical instructor and told her about my broken arm.  She told me that when she broke her elbow, she was not allowed to come into work until her cast came off.  I had hoped it wouldn't be an issue, but her reaction made it clear that this was a serious issue. 

I arranged to meet with my advisor at school to inquire how I should proceed.  She took one look at me and said, "Shit!"  Not a good sign.  She told me that I would need to take an incomplete in my class and complete my clinical time in August.  That was very disappointing, but the worst news was soon to come. 

I may not be able to take my summer classes, effectively derailing my progress in the program.  Without those classes I cannot graduate on time and those classes are only offered in the summer.  In stead of graduating one year from now, I would graduate in the December, seven months later.  There are only three classes I can take without completing those summer classes. I don't know what that would mean for my financial aid or my ability to remain a full time student. 

I am waiting to learn the names of the instructors I need to meet with in order to determine if I will be allowed to take the classes. 

I'm trying to stay positive.  The good news is the spring semester is almost over...