So long story short, I am dogsitting.
Well, she whines as soon as you put her in the crate for the night, and kept whining. And whining. And whining. Not so badly that I couldn’t fall asleep, however. I just attribute it to the fact she knows her buddy Maggie is here and consequently doesn’t want to be in her crate because she would rather be playing.
Fast forward to just a bit ago, when I wake up because she is being even LOUDER than ever. I don’t look at the clock, but go out on the landing to yell at her to be quiet (she is downstairs but directly below the balcony). As I am yelling at her, she sounds even louder, and like she is moving. I turn around, and there she is—coming up the stairs! Damn dog got out of her crate! I obviously didn’t latch it correctly, and she freakin clawed/forced her way out.
So, I was pissed at myself for not doing it right, and pissed at her for not just sleeping (like my dog does—you could not even latch the door and she wouldn’t try to get out—she knows it’s sleep time). But she’s just a dog so what can you do. So I head down the stairs to take her outside and then put her back in the crate.
And then one of my biggest fears happen—in the dark, in my frustration, I miss the last step and go crashing to the floor. Luckily my head missed the marble fireplace (but my leg must have hit it because there is a nasty scrape and bruise forming). I laid there for a few moments, in utter terror and pain, waiting for the shock to wear off so I can tell if anything was broken.
I was crying from the pain—and it felt like both ankles were twisted, although thankfully not broken. The dog is hovering above me, nosing at me, thinking I am playing. I just want to scream and cry. I manage to crawl on my knees to the kitchen to let the dog out, then hobble back to her crate and make sure she is really locked in.
Then I hobble back up the stairs—in major pain with every step—and take some Aleve, then hobble to bed. It is at this point that I look at the clock and see…it’s only 2am. I was hoping it was later, like 6am, so I could just stay up. Of course at this point, my cat decided to yak up a hairball so I had to hobble around cleaning that up.
I emailed my coworker (from my phone) to let her know I might not be in in the morning if I can’t walk. So then I just laid there, both ankles just throbbing and screaming in pain. I have some movement but it hurts.
I have never technically twisted an ankle before, so I don’t know if it’s a true twist or just a sprain or what. Should I go to the doctor in the morning? Or just keep popping pills? Is it going to hurt me to walk on it?
/off to google
I see RICE is recommended. Ugh. I am not sure it’s worth it to go BACK downstairs to get ice. So I may just move to compression with ace bandages since those are in the bathroom. But I don’t even want to get up to get those. I may just go with elevation until morning.
Okay, nothing looks swollen at all, but I can barely even stand, let alone walk. Friends are taking me to the doc, as I don’t trust myself to drive. Called my coworker and boss and left messages. I hope the doc can wrap them or give me crutches… I have no idea how I am going to go up and down the stairs a million times this weekend for the dogs.
Well, I am home and waiting for the Vicodin to kick in.
At 8am I showed up to my regular clinic, at which point they told me I had to go to the ER (base, of course) since they didn’t have x-ray facilities. Luckily my friend was able to take me. Let me just say I am not thrilled with the treatment there.
I hobble in, can barely walk or stand, tell the ER person what happened, and she tells me to take a form and “go over there by the window to fill it out.” 88| I should have asked for the wheelchair right then, but I was in too much shock that she didn’t offer. So I hobbled over, filled out the form, hobbled back, and she told me to go have a seat in the waiting room—literally 20 yards down the hallway. At this point my friend was coming back in from having parked the car in BFE, saw my distress, and asked for a wheelchair since I couldn’t walk. A wheelchair appeared immediately. I just wonder why they didn’t think of that themselves when I came in and said “I fell down the stairs and can’t walk.”
I didn’t have to wait that long before I was taken to radiology, but I had to go back in THREE times to redo x-rays that they messed up. First the tray was in backwards. Then they reused a tray that hadn’t been cleared so I had a wrist on my ankle. Ugh. I know mistakes happen (I mean, after all, that’s how I fell down the stairs) but that was kind of like strike #2.
Then it was back out to the waiting room, where the wait sucked, but it really wasn’t THAT bad—maybe an hour? I got wheeled into the actual ER and layed on the bed. Unfortunately, we were in there for almost two hours just waiting. At about 1:30 my friend went out and asked when we might be seen, just curious (because we saw docs walking around and lots of people not doing anything) and they said they only had one doc on until 2pm. (It would have been really nice had someone told us this when we first came in, or any time while we were waiting.) Interestingly, a doc was there five minutes later. He was nice enough, but he asked me if I had had x-rays taken yet. Um, I take it he didn’t even look at my chart. So he said he had to go check the x-rays and get back with us. Good lord you would think he would have already looked at the x-rays before even coming to see me.
So after another 30 minutes or so he came back and said he didn’t see any breaks so it was probably just ligaments or muscles. He didn’t seem like he was going to say anything else, so I asked him if I was going to get drugs. I asked him if I was going to get my ankles wrapped (he said “when you wrap your ankles” and I was like “Aren’t you going to wrap them for me?”). I asked if I was going to get crutches. It was like he wasn’t clued in AT ALL. I thought he would have came back and said “It doesn’t appear to be broken. We will wrap your ankles, give you Vicodin, and give you crutches.” But I guess I was expecting too much.
Here is my pathetic self leaving the hospital.
So, I went in at 8:30 and got out at 2, which is par for the course from what I’ve heard. It wasn’t that bad I guess, just frustrating that no one kept us updated on anything, when there were literally 10 nurses/support staff/etc. wandering around the whole time, talking about what they were doing for lunch, etc.
I thank god for my (our) friend Ursula, who sat with me the whole time. I am thankful she works with her husband in real estate and was able to be away from the office all day. She brought me home, gathered everything I said I would need, and even turned on lights throughout the house so if I fell asleep, there would be lights on when I got up. I am also thankful for my neighbors (Rob and Cindy) who are coming down tonight to let the dogs out. Hopefully I can do it myself later in the weekend but I want to try to stay immobile as much as possible for the first 24 hours.
As far as sleeping on the couch downstairs… it is possible. I would have the laptop (no TV, but could watch movies on the laptop) and a toilet. But my dog would still be upstairs (where her crate normally is). The dog I’m sitting for—her crate is downstairs. So no matter where I am, one dog is on the other floor. So I am in the living room upstairs with the phone, drugs, laptop, TV, pillows, blanket, water, and snacks…until the neighbor comes over at 7:30 to check on me and the dogs.
Unfortunately, Tom has no idea what’s going on. I emailed him at 2am (right after it happened) and then he called when I was on my way to the ER. But while we were at the hospital our phones had to be off so he called like five times and I obviously didn’t answer so he doesn’t know if I have two broken ankles or what. Poor guy, even called my friend’s husband in case he knew anything—which he didn’t either because her phone was off, too.
This just really really sucks. Our cruise is a hair over a month, and I just have this feeling I will not be up to par by then. I mean, I totally hope otherwise, but… with TWO sprained ankles, it’s not like I can walk on one and baby the other. When I walk, I have to walk on BOTH, so I don’t think either one is going to heal as quickly. I am not sure about work, either—I am supposed to keep my feet elevated, but that is impossible at work—and when I asked the doc, he said “just do your best.” What the hell does that mean? Ugh.
So, the Vicodin still hasn’t kicked in and it’s been over an hour.
Well my bosses called to see if I needed anything, so I asked them to bring me Chinese. In the meantime, my neighbor called and said he was bringing down pot roast, so I would be set for a few meals! Rob (our doctor neighbor!) stopped in my kitchen and brought the salt and pepper and silverware. I love him. He also assured me the next dose of Vicodin would help more (it builds up in your system), plus I could also take additional meds on top of it. And that the pain should subside a lot tomorrow. Here’s hoping. And I asked him about the ER doc I had (since he works at the same hospital) and he said yeah, that guy is okay, competent, but not great. Oh, it was also good timing as the dogs were whining to go out. Shortly after he left, my bosses arrived.
Rob has been great. He came down twice, brought me dinner (which will be lunch tomorrow), and brought me other drugs (he’s the doc). I just hate having to ask for help, which I know is ridiculous because I would drop everything to help these neighbors if/when they called. So I know they would do the same for me (which they are doing) but I still hate asking. Like just a bit earlier, I knew I wanted to go to bed, and he hadn’t been back yet for the dogs’ last walk, so I had to call. He was down within two minutes. Then after he left his wife called to tell me her schedule for tomorrow so I would know when I could call. I love them. I love all our friends. They rock.
I am just waiting for Tom to call so I can fill him in. At this point, as far as he knows, I could have two broken ankles…
Sunday, February 3—1:23pm
I am doing even better today—quite a difference from Friday when I swore it would be weeks before I was walking again. I have cut out the Vicodin and am just using Motrin at this point, and I am barely using the crutches. So, it looks like I will be going to work tomorrow, although from past experience, I know that by the end of the day, my ankles will be SORE, since now I am used to having them elevated all day.
Wednesday, February 6—9:25pm
The ankles are getting better. I gave up the crutches Monday night, and just kept taking the Motrin and icing my ankles (and keeping them elevated) at night. Today I gave up the ankle wraps and actually bought a pre-formed ankle wrap from the medical supply place (I have to go back tomorrow to get a second one – they were out of stock). I wasn’t sure how much difference one of these wraps would make, but at the end of the day, the ankle with the wrap hurts less.
So I am walking okay, albeit still slowly—and taking great precaution on the stairs. And I am bruising nicely.