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Counting Blessings

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Part 1: It Can Always Be Worse

On January 29th, I underwent a two and half hour surgery to fix the damage to my right ankle. My ankle was injured on May 22, 2013 when a Toyota Forerunner pulled directly in front of me while I was riding my road bike.

I was lucky that this monster SUV did not run over me. Had I been a tenth of a second earlier, a would had been crushed under the tires of this massive vehicle. I am just counting my blessings. Slamming into the side of the gigantic wall of silver sheet metal hurt me very badly but I am still here.

I was also fortunate to find a highly skilled and distinguished Orthopedic Surgeon that was able to get me on his surgery schedule in less than a week. A big bonus is that this doctor has a keen sense of humor. He scheduled my surgery as the last one of the day so he could take his time just in case there was more damage that the imaging showed. He told me that my injury was as bad as he had ever seen in a patient that could still walk.

The good news is the doctor was able to reconstruct my ankle so there should be no lasting issues, and eventually I should regain 99% use of my right ankle.

After the surgery, the doctor put me a clunky support boot for five days.

When the swelling went down, I was fitted with a temporary cast.

The temporary cast was removed a week later. My ankle was very swollen and the orthopedic techs had a difficult time pulling the stitches. The techs really had to dig deeply to get the stitches out. The stitch removal was not a pleasant experience.

An orthopedic tech that was fresh out of tech school put on my "permanent" cast. I selected a nice deep purple color. Unfortunately, the purple cast was weak, flattened-out and pinched my toes. I went back to the doctor's office to get another cast refit. The same rookie tech removed the defective cast and installed a green colored cast. This green cast was brittle and started to crack and split. I wrapped the defective cast with duct tape to get me through the weekend. I made an appointment for 7:00AM Monday for yet another cast refit. I was nervous that I would get the rookie again.

To my surprise and delight, the young woman that had put on my red temporary cast was assigned to fit my new cast. This woman tech is very experienced and she fitted me with a bullet-proof orange cast.

This new cast is solid as a rock and reasonably comfortable.

Part 2: Counting My Blessings

In no particular order, here is a list of my blessings:

(1) When I was clobbered by the Toyota Forerunner I wasn't killed, just dinged-up a bit.
(2) I found a very skilled Orthopedic Surgeon to put my ankle back together.
(3) The two cast refits gave me a chance to scratch my itchy foot and ankle.
(4) I have been careful about eating and have actually lost a little weight.
(5) I got a handicapped placard and get to park in executive parking in the basement of my office building.

(6)The placard is good until May 2014, which is perfect to get me completely healed.
(7) I have plenty of old boot socks that I can cut in half to cover my toes.
(8) I am building a cool new bike just exactly the way I like.
(9) My right foot is not hurting any longer.
(8) My five grown children were texting my wife during my surgery to make sure the "old man" was OK.
(9) My two oldest boys are both engaged to really nice young women that my wife and I really like.
(10) My youngest son won a $50 bet on the Super Bowl.
(11) My youngest son won his bet against me! He agreed that I can payoff the bet by taking him out to eat and I really enjoy his company. We both won.
(12) I can walk so well with the cast that most people don't notice I am injured.
(13) I have a great dog that frets about my injuries and tries to comfort me.
(14) My wife has been doing a lot of stuff that I normally do around the house.
(15) I am getting a lot more mobile and now can resume some of my household duties.
(16) My company is opening a lot of clinics in Europe and Asia, and I am scheduled to start doing some international traveling.
(17) I am getting a promotion.
(18) I am getting back my sense of humor.

I can think of a lot more blessings but I need to go to bed. Thanks for reading my rambling blog.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Really good blessings!
    1803 days ago
    1811 days ago
    So glad to see you've kept your positive attitude. It must be so difficult. I get cranky over small things, but a big thing needs exactly the perspective you have itemized here. Maintaining a positive attitude as a way of life surely helps in times like this.
    Heal quickly! You're still Superman to me.
    1821 days ago
    Amen, Brother!
    1822 days ago
    I love your list of blessings! And I'm so glad your accident wasn't worse. Will you be traveling internationally with the cast?
    1823 days ago
  • NWFL59
    Glad your on the mend and prospects look great. Congratulations on the promotion and the progress you're making on your new personalized bike. I hope things continue to emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1823 days ago
    So glad you are on the road to recovery! You are very good at counting your blessings!
    1823 days ago
    I love your list of things to be thanksful for! I was reading it and some of them I could easily adapt to fit my stoke 3 1/2 months ago. And I really am lucky as I should have been dead too where the brain bleed was. I think what we had been doing before our injuries really helped up to heal better/faster (I know it's not really fast when we're going through it but it could take so much longer). I know I've been told that and I bet it's the same for you and why you were still walking before surgery lke the doc said. I have 5 grown kids too and it was an eye opener to them that I am not immortal LOL. Brought me even closer to some of them. And I've looked around in hospitals and rehab at people so much worse off than me. And before this happened I worked with elderly/disabled doing service coordation for many problems, including helping them with problems like what I ended up having. So we both have so much to count our blessings for.

    I'm so glad you didn't get that new tech a third time!
    1823 days ago
    All's well that ends well.
    Always good to keep a positive outlook.
    1823 days ago
  • JACKIE542
    Sure hope all goes well with the new cast. Your list of blessings is great, made me smile, so many great blessings there. I need to do this.
    Have fun building your bike. emoticon
    1823 days ago
    1823 days ago
    You have a great attitude, and a good sense of humor.
    1823 days ago
    Still a very tough situation. Glad you are able to see the bright side of things.
    Is there a true blessing in all of this?
    1823 days ago
    It was a very wonderful blog my friend. I have never read a gratitude listing from a man before. Very refreshing.

    You've never mentioned it so I'm asking: was the woman who hit you cited? Is her insurance helping with the expenses of your surgeries?
    1824 days ago
    I am glad things are working out. You are lucky with this in many ways.
    1824 days ago
    positive thoughts. emoticon better to count blessings, even if you have to stretch for some, than store up resentments
    1824 days ago
    emoticon Glad you are healing and regaining your sense of humor lol. I hope the driver has faced some real consequences, it could easily have been so much worse.
    1824 days ago
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