I've been neglecting my blogging big time. Probably due to the facebooking which seems to have replaced it. But I had a big incident that really needs to be blogged:

The BIG scaffolding accident. Far worse than the big kiting accident from years ago and not nearly as funny. It was Friday March 25 and I was helping my boss John John move a tall scaffold that he was using to paint the warehouse. It was about 8-10 feet tall and the bottom half was basically supports for the top half, which had all the safety bars on it, which made it very top heavy. At one point John John decided to tip it up to get over an obstacle and since it was on wheels I had to steady it to keep it from rolling. Well, it didn't tip too far before it just decided to disassemble, first the top coming off, then the bottom just coming apart. 

The next few seconds was a bit of a blur for me. I thought I remembered what had happened exactly but since it was falling in slow motion for John John I asked him after the fact how it went and it was about how I remembered. At first I was facing it so I tried to stop it from falling but it became quickly obvious that I wasn't going to be able to overpower it. So I did an about face and it slammed me to the ground and then fell on top of me. The only hit I initially remembered was the final hit to my head. Because it hit my glasses I was concerned that my glasses had broke and maybe gashed my face. That was all good so I called out to John John "I'm good! Nothing's broke!" Hah!

The dust settled and was just laying there under the scaffold on my left side, panting heavily. I felt fine, just winded. I wondered what John John was doing, I couldn't see anything but the wall. Apparently he was trying to figure out how to get this large thing off me without it coming apart more and doing more damage or if it wouldn't come apart, maybe it was too heavy to lift. I don't know, he was quiet. So while he was silently wandering around trying to figure things out I just lay there panting. After a couple minutes I notice that my arm felt like it was expanding, like it was getting blown up like a balloon. Pressure but no pain. So I just looked over at it and it didn't appear swollen. I pulled up my sweater sleeve to get a better look and my wrist was deformed, obviously broken. So I called out "my wrist's broken". Oops, I thought I was all good. 

Finally John John comes around and just lifts the scaffold about a foot off the floor but there's no room to move it so I push myself with my good arm and leg so he doesn't have to move it far. That all gets cleared up and finally he comes with an office chair to get me to his truck. After seeing my arm I know I'm injured and now am afraid to try to move. "Just call an ambulance" I kept thinking to myself. I didn't want to try to move, I was afraid of what might hurt. But the hospital is right across the street so I understand the desire to just drive me over. I wasn't bleeding or showing any outward signs of injury other than the deformed wrist and my right leg was swelling just below the knee and I couldn't straighten or stand on it. He tried to help me onto the chair when I reminded him that my arm needed to be supported so he got a painting stick and a newspaper and taped me up a great splint. I somehow managed to get up onto the chair and then getting into the truck wasn't too difficult.  On the short drive to the ER we were discussing my leg (there was no discussion of my arm necessary) and both agreed it couldn't be broke. We got there and I started to feel sick finally. I was in a wheelchair when I thought I was either gonna pass out or lose my lunch. Neither happened fortunately. 

We got into a room and got the X-rays started. The damage to my hand is most simply described as my hand being broken off the end of my arm and shoved slightly up into my arm, all under the skin though. Then I asked about my leg: "So what's up with my leg?" He says matter-of-factly "It's broke". I think he said that right after confirming that my wrist will likely need surgery. Poor John John is sitting there hearing it all straight from the horse's mouth. I can only imagine all the screaming that was going on inside his head! 

Next they come out with the Chinese finger trap. Remember the little fiber thing you got as a kid at a party that you'd get your friend to stick a finger in each end and they'd be trapped? Chinese finger trap! This is a medical device they use to help with these kind of injuries. They put each of your fingers into a metal mesh and then just let it hang for a while to allow gravity to do what it can to correct some damage. I had already warned the doc that I needed plenty of local anesthesia to numb me so he fixed me up real good. So good that when he talked about "reducing" the break once I'd been in the finger trap for 20-30 minutes and I prepared myself for the PAIN ... nothing! No pain! No yelling! 

They took me back to X-ray to see how well those attempts worked on my mangled wrist. Nope, gonna need surgery. So they stuck my leg in an "immobilizer" (which again could have been agonizing because that leg didn't want to be straight) told me that I'd have to be in a wheelchair for a while and that they couldn't put my clothes back on me over all the splints, etc. so I had to go home in a hospital gown and we were headed home. All this took place in about 4 hours! 

I was house sitting for a friend so they took me back to her house since it had more furniture that I could use comfortably than at the folks' place. The bathroom was a different matter. It has a small door that the wheelchair wouldn't fit through so I had to hop to the toilet (8 hops, I counted). John John's wife met us there with a wheelchair and a ramp. She was about five months pregnant but they managed to get me inside the house anyway, the ramp only helped with one step, there was still two more to get into the house. 

So I muddled through a few days alone in this house with a rambunctious kitten. Friends came by and my folks came, everyone was so helpful. I was capable of most things myself but I couldn't go outside. Mom had to install a hand held shower and I borrowed a shower chair from a friend so I could bathe. That sure was a hassle. 
Tuesday I had my appointment with the orthopedic surgeon, a nice Mormon guy, Dr. Judd. He looked at my X-rays and said I could have them mash it together more, put on a hard cast and hope for the best or I could have surgery. Well, duh! Give me the surgery. He said "Can you make it tomorrow?" Certainly! He also informed me that the bone that had broken in my leg was not a weight bearing bone and was a good, clean break that didn't need to be set or cast so I could walk on it but not to go crazy (no jumping jacks or trampolines). 

The folks took me in for my surgery the next day. It took an hour and 20 minutes and the doc said it all went together perfectly. Two weeks later I went in, they x-rayed again and said it looked real good. I was already using my fingers so no nerve or tendon damage. My next appointment is in another couple weeks, when I get back from my visit on the mainland. 

While I was in Washington visiting and doing yard work I left my splint off all day, only wearing it when I slept. It got very tired in the afternoon but there was lots of improvement in mobility. The leg rarely bothered me already except when I tried to squat and then getting up off the ground. It just hadn't the strength and I didn't want to push it.  I got back to Kauai and had my next doctor visit. He said it's healed enough that I can start some rigorous physical therapy and guessed that it would only be 3-4 months before its back to its new normal. I opted not to go to a therapist, I just looked some exercises up online and do them numerous times during the day. Lots of improvement but now I'm finally having pain issues. The doc said it'll hurt me but I can't hurt it.  Ouch...

About Me

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After 2 unsuccessful marriages I spent 12 years as a divorcee, only to fall prey to another man's wiles. We had a fun 5 years together and then he decided he wanted more freedom so once again I'm single.

So I'm freshly divorced at 57 and have 5 great kids and now 7 grandkids. My kids are still a major part of my life but I'm busy helping my aging parents on Kauai.

I've lived in California, Hawaii and Oklahoma before finally settling here in Washington. I love Washington and come back to visit family, friends and take care of my garden often but will be temporarily a resident of Kauai.

I've moved 30 times in my life (no, my parents weren't in the service, at least not since I was about 2) and finally planted roots when I got my little house that I've owned since '91.

My family are Jehovah's Witnesses, I've been one since '72.