Injury Timeline


Thursday, December 24, 2015

The FrankenFoot Strikes Back

I've been so busy with the holidays these past couple of weeks, I wasn't able to blog last week!  But, all of the presents are wrapped, dinner is served, and the house is clean, and I found myself with some time to blog on Christmas Eve.  Wahoo!

I had surgery 9 days ago, on December 15th, to remove the remainder of my temporary hardware, which ended up being two screws.  I've done this surgery twice now, so it almost felt routine.  I called and got my surgery time the day before, which was 1:00 again.  The exact same time as the last surgery.  I was disappointed because it was so late in the day, and I was pretty miserable last time, since I'm not allowed to eat past midnight.  I asked the doctor's office, and they said that he liked to schedule the easier surgeries later in the day because he has a tendency to get behind on some of the harder surgeries.  And even though I was coming in pretty late at 1:00, I wasn't the last surgery for the day  That poor, poor soul behind me.

As I was getting ready the morning of surgery, at about 10:00, TOSH called me and wanted me to come in right away for surgery because there was an opening on the schedule.  They asked how long I'd be, and I'd told them about a half hour, just long enough to drive to the surgical center.  I scrambled to get dressed and get my stuff together.  As we were walking out the door, my phone rang again and I saw it was the doctor's office.  The nurse explained that there was a change and they would no longer need me to come in early, so I should just come at my regularly scheduled time of 1:00.  Dammit!  I'd had my hopes up of getting done early only to be smashed into little pieces.

So, I waited..and waited, and finally went to the hospital to check-in for surgery at 1.  Same routine at always, as soon as I was taken back, the nurse took a set of vitals, I changed into my sexy hospital drape, and gave a urine sample to prove I wasn't pregnant and was OK for surgery.  I met a flurry of nurses and doctors, had my IV started with liquid tylenol, and gave my name and birthdate about a dozen times.  Luckily my admitting nurse, who went over my medication history with me, knew what a NuvaRing was so I was saved of that embarrassing conversation this time.  I finally got to see Dr. Van Boerum right before surgery.  He wrote a YES on my right foot, and then started explaining to me how he has a set of tools and all kinds of gadgets to get my screws removed.  He totally creeped me out again....please just take my screws out; I don't need to know the details!  They were also letting me take home my screws this time!  The hospital didn't allow me to take home my pins from my last surgery because they were too sharp and were a liability.  Whatever.  



The last person I saw before surgery was my anesthesiologist a little after 3.  Instead of being hauled in a wheelchair, I walked by myself back to the surgery room!  It was cold.  I hopped up on the table.  They put a warm blanket on me.  I heard someone say that in 10 or 15 seconds I would be sleepy.  I was then waking up in the recovery room.  When I woke up from the last surgery, I had zero pain, but lots of anxiety thanks to a huge shot of morphine.  This time, when I woke up, no anxiety, but a pain level of about 4 - totally manageable.  I also could immediately feel relief in my foot from where the screws had been, no more pinching or pressure.  My recovery nurse gave me some ice water and honey graham crackers.  They both tasted amazing.  Shortly after, Nate and my mom joined me in the recovery room.  I felt nice and relaxed, and was quickly cleared to go home.  I laced up ye olde walking boot and started to get up and walk out. But, the nurse chased me down, made me get in the wheelchair and took me out to the parking lot.

There was a lot more pain and discomfort with this round of surgery than I expected with the next few days that followed.  Removing the screws is a little more involved than removing the pins.  My incisions are bigger, and my foot/tendons/bones were a lot sorer than last time.  I needed to take more pain medication than I wanted to or thought that I would need.  That led to the uncomfortable side effect of opioids on the digestive system. I finally started to feel better about 5 days after surgery.




One thing I didn't the surgery stop me from doing, was seeing Star Wars on opening night!  I had all of these grand plans to dress up as a sith version of Ahsoka Tano.  But, quite frankly, I felt miserable and taking a shower and getting myself ready completely exhausted me.  The thought of trying to put on a costume and paint my face seemed too daunting.  So, I didn't end up going in costume.  I was disappointed about that, and wish I'd felt better that night for the movie.  I still went though, and it was AWESOME and I am so glad that I went, even doped up on various pills, in a boot, and in some nagging pain.   I actually have seen it 2 times since, when I was feeling better!  And Rey.  She.  Is.  Amazing.    She is such a strong female character.  She inspires me to be a bad ass.  Cool girls don't look at explosions.


I will go back in to the doctor next week to get my stitches removed.  I was told not to remove my dressing until I saw the doctor again, but, full disclosure, I took it off already.  It was fraying, getting snagged on my boot, and there was no way that it was going to stay on for two weeks.  I've been in the boot during my waking hours ever since surgery, mainly to protect my incisions.  It's such a bummer since I've been used to walking in my tennis shoes for the last month.  But, once I see the doctor, I can swear off the boot for good!  Trumpy (my scooter) was placed in his final resting place this weekend.  The basement.  He was a good scooter and served me well.  

As for the hardware, this is what was inside my foot for 5 months.  Of what they let me take home anyway.  Just touching it and feeling it makes it hard to believe that this piece of metal was actually inside of me.  No wonder it was so painful.  I'm glad to be rid of it!


Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Getting Better

Last post, I was really frustrated with things.

This week, I feel a lot better.

I am definitely progressing and getting better at walking, and the pain is getting better as well.  I'm still not walking as fast I'd like to, but I can go a lot farther distances before I get uncomfortable, and it doesn't seem quite as daunting.  It still takes me a little bit to get going in the morning before my foot seems to "warm up" or after sitting for a long time.  Walking is starting to feel a bit more natural, but I still have a limp and I still can't roll from heel to toe in one fluid motion quite yet.  Balance is getting much better, especially after my last physical therapy session.  I've been doing squats on uneven ground, which translates into a set of discs (or pancakes), or a bosu ball or even two pillows.  I was really wobbly the first day but as each day goes by I am getting better at it, and sometimes I don't even need to hold on!

A couple of exciting (but little) things happened this week, too!  First, I was able to stand up for the entire duration of my shower.  I had a simple solution - I just moved my anti-slip mat into the shower stall and it gave me enough of the grip my right foot needed to feel steady.  So now I shower, and shave, like a normal person again!  There have also started to be moments where I am not actively thinking about my foot.  I found myself making dinner, going back and forth from the island, to the stove, to the fridge and I stopped in the middle of it, realizing I'd completely forgotten about the old foot.  It's almost like it was normal again.  That made me really happy, because ever since my injury, every time I was up moving around, or even moving in general, or trying to get comfortable on the couch, I was thinking about my foot.  Always conscious of it.  To have moments where I'm not even thinking about it, is amazing.

As I'm getting more active, however, the pain in my left side is roaring up again.  Most specifically in my hip and left thigh.  Time will tell if this is really something to worry about, or just a side effect of starting to use my muscles normally again.

I am going in for surgery on Tuesday the 15th for my final procedure to remove hardware.  I am pre-registered and ready to go!  I'm looking forward to having those screws GONE!  I called super early this time for surgery, hoping that it improves my chances of getting an earlier time.  I'm not sure that it matters, but I gave it a shot.  Not eating until 6PM the next day was not a pleasant experience and one I'd rather not have again.  I'll know the night before what time I'm expected to arrive at TOSH.

Other than the surgery, I have a couple of things to look forward to next week!  My last day working in 2015 is December 11th, then I am out on medical and paid time off until January.  I will have a nice long vacation to recover, relax, and enjoy the holidays with family.  Nate and I are going in for a delayed-anniversary couples massage on Sunday before my surgery, which I am very excited about.  They need to get in there.... DEEP.  Well, everywhere but my right foot of course!

And the thing I'm most looking forward to.....STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS!  I am going at 1 AM to see it in 3D IMAX on opening night.  I've been prepping with marathons of Episodes 1-6, all 6 seasons of The Clone Wars, the Star Wars Holiday Special, Fanboys, and the 2 new seasons of Star Wars Rebels.  I have a costume planned, however, it might not pan out because of stricter costume policies for movie theaters due to all of the recent events.  Which may or may not include face paint.  So much for my imagining of Ahsoka Tano as a young Sith apprentice!  I'll at least be able to pull off some leg bio-mechanics for a costume... since I'll be back in my boot (and most likely still doped up on pain meds) for the movie.  The anesthesia makes me incredibly emotional... so misa don't wanna see important character peoples that are gonna die.  Unless that includes Jar Jar.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Frustrations

K, so, always, ALWAYS when I post about how great my foot is feeling, I end up putting my foot in my mouth!  That was a metaphor.  

I'm feeling emotional and frustrated, so boom, blog post!

Monday was my first day back from holiday vacation and the first time I was walking around the office boot free.  I work in a building that has 25 acres of property and is 395,000 square feet.  It is a BIG jump from walking around the house, to walking around this gigantic building.  The walk from the parking lot to my desk is at least a 10 minute hoof, and I no longer have my handicap pass.  It was about 20 degrees on Monday morning walking in.  I was trying to walk as fast as I could to get inside the building as quickly as possible, but my "fast" walk is a meager saunter by normal standards.  So, that was really frustrating.  My mind wanted to go faster, my body was trying to push me faster, but my foot wouldn't cooperate.  People were passing me left and right, and going around me, and I just felt defeated.  Then I make my way to the elevator, cram in with 8 different people, and I'm the only one going to the 2nd floor.  I know people are thinking that I'm lazy and should just take the stairs, mostly by people's reaction when we have to make a stop at 2.  So I do my little walk hobble of shame to my desk, exhausted.  I finally get to start my work day!  But everything seems so......far.  Going to the bathroom, running back and forth between meetings, going to the gym, getting lunch and coffee from the cafeteria, then the walk back out to the car.  I got about 7,000 steps according to my fitness tracker.

The foot felt fine yesterday, and last night, pain free.  I was just mainly frustrated because it takes a long time to get from point A to point B, but Rome wasn't built in a day and neither are shattered navicular bones.  Then, I woke up this morning.  I usually have soreness and stiffness when I first wake up, but I was really sore.  And it didn't really go away after I walked around and got ready for work.  Nate told me that I should wear the boot to work, but, I'm viciously stubborn and there was no way that I was doing that.  He was sweet, despite my stubbornness, and dropped me off at the front door of my office so I only had to walk part of the way.  Despite the violent protesting that occurred inside our vehicle about him doing so.

I thought finally walking would be the cure for everything.  It isn't.  Yes, I'm walking around in shoes (well just the one pair that I can so it does offer some interesting fashion choices...whatever..) and I'm so so so so happy about that.  But on the other hand, I'm still a long way off from being 100% again, or at least close enough.  I injured myself over 5 months ago.  I spent 115 days not walking at all.  I started walking with 25% of my weight in October with a boot in crutches.  I weaned to 1 crutch after 3 weeks, then just the boot for 3 more.  I'm finally out of the boot, but how much longer is this recovery going to take?  It feels so long.  Never ending.  There was always a milestone to look forward to:  getting my splint off and into a cast, out of the cast and into the boot, removal of my pins, weight bearing with crutches, no crutches, weaning out of the boot, walking in shoes.  Now, there's just one more milestone left and that is the surgery to remove my screws.  Granted, they've been causing me a lot of pain, and I'm optimistic that my pain and walking will improve once they are gone.  I also will be slapped back into the book for a few weeks after surgery, and that feels like a set back.  But, after the screws are gone, then what?  What's the next milestone to look forward to?  When will my limp go away? When is it going to be as good as it gets?

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Boot the Boot

Yesterday was my first day that I was allowed to be out of the boot all day!

I've been working on weaning out of the boot for the last week and a half or so.

I still don't walk "normally", or what I would consider normal anyway.  I think that will just take time.  I move pretty slow when walking, and I have a little bit of a limp.  As the day goes on my limp starts to get a little worse.  I can't say that walking is necessarily painful, but my foot feels stiff and a unnatural. I still have plenty of hardware inside my foot that I am sure is not helping.  I don't know how long it will take until things start to feel normal again, but I can say that I'm just happy to be walking.  My arch still isn't ready to support my barefoot, so I need to have shoes on, preferably with an insert, to do any walking around.  I have been trying to stand up more in the shower, rather than using my gimp stool, but my right foot still feels slippery on the tile.  Like my foot can't grip onto the smooth surface or something, so I still need to steady myself on the wall.

I did have a follow-up appointment this week at TOSH.  They took a set of x-rays, and this is the very first time I've taken a weight bearing x-ray on my right foot!  I was a bit sore afterwards, since I had to be barefoot and my foot is still not ready for that.  The doctor indicated that everything looked great, and had me schedule surgery on December 15th to remove the two screws.  I was very specific that the surgery not conflict with the new Star Wars movie release, since I already have purchased our midnight tickets on opening night!  He confirmed that my plate will stay in, mostly because the navicular bone does not get a lot of blood supply and taking it out may cause it to just crumble.  Ain't nobody got time for that.  Also, all of the screws will stay in the plate as well.  I guess I'd always just assumed that they would come out.  I can feel them, and it bugs me, but I'm sure after a while my foot will just get used to it's permanent guests.  There is also a screw head that is across my Lisfranc joint (at the base of my 1st and 2nd metatarsals) that is poking my inside arch.  It's been increasingly painful as I start to increase walking without the boot.  It has been really tender the last few days.  When I mentioned this to the doctor, he pressed down on the area to confirm it was the screw and not anything else.  My yelp confirmed that yep, it's the screw.  Ow.  It was so sore that day after he did that.  Jerk!  Lol.  I'm glad that screw will be removed in a couple of weeks.

Thankfully, I've got a lot of vacation time banked at work, and I will use most of it for my surgery and my holiday vacation.  My co-workers unfortunately won't be seeing me much in the month of December!

For Black Friday, Nate and I splurged a bit and purchased a spin bike for our basement gym.  Since I can't run, I actually couldn't even really walk for exercise right now, I wanted something at home that I could do for sustainable cardio.  I really have been limited to lifting weights with my Power Blocks, or my TRX.  While I love both of those,  I need to do cardio (says the extra 20lbs I've put on since surgery!) and that is not really an option with strength training.




Even when I can start walking enough to increase my heart rate enough to the point of cardio, let me remind you that it is winter in Utah.  Not only is the air freezing cold, and the ground icy, but we have this lovely thing called inversion, when the cold air gets trapped in the mountain valley, along with all the smog and pollution.  It's quite disgusting, and breathing the air outside is not pleasurable.  Most of January and February, when the inversion is at its worst, I struggle to breathe and often have horrible sinus issues. Exercising outside just makes it that much worse.  Here's an example of the lovely crap the Salt Lake Valley gets to deal with for the majority of the winter:



  
I also had a birthday this week!  I'm now at the ripe old age of 32.  Nate got me a gorgeous necklace
that holds my wedding ring, and took me on a hot date to Ruth's Chris where I had the most phenomenal surf & turf.



The last time I got fancied up was for our anniversary in August.  I was still on my scooter, non-weight bearing and I had to keep my foot elevated most of the time.  It was great to be able to go out without having "special needs" and I could be a normal girl for a night out on the town!  It also made me reflect on how tough this year has been on me (and Nate) and I am so grateful that I had my best friend by my side the entire time and I realize that I could not have made it through this without him.


Sunday, November 22, 2015

Weaning

Probably the biggest milestone ever this week.....

I am weaning out of the walking boot!

I started on Wednesday, being allowed 2-3 hours out of the boot and in my tennis shoes, and the rest of the day in the boot.  Every other day, I get to add an hour to the time I'm allowed out of the boot.  Wed & Thurs, I spent 2-3 hours out, Fri & Sat, I spent 4-5 hours out, and today I'm up to 6-7 hours!  As per the usual, I've just been told to listen to my foot and if it starts to hurt, I shouldn't push it.  If I am hurting by hour 5, I should just put the boot back on.  I don't have to hit those hours every day, only if the foot can tolerate it.  With my weaning schedule, I should be COMPLETELY out of the boot by next Saturday!  

Balance on my right side is still a bit of an issue.  Pretty much all of my PT exercises focus on that.  I'm getting better at my single leg stance, and the goal is to balance 20 seconds on my right side.  I am doing pretty good and can hit 20 seconds, or close enough.  I've added a couple of new exercises, including walking with a band around my ankles, and balancing on my right leg while rotating a ball around my foot.  I hate my balancing exercises!  I get a break next week from a PT session, since it is Thanksgiving week.  But, I still get to see Dr. Van Boerum on Wednesday to get x-rays and he will decide when my next surgery will be.

My posterior tibial tendon issue seems to have resolved itself.  I'm not really getting much pain there anymore, unless I'm really overdoing it.  I've just been careful with it, like I've been told to do, and it has apparently done the trick.  Other than that, I really have no real pain to report aside from having some knee pain if I spend too long walking around in the boot.

Walking barefoot has been getting a lot easier, although I still don't do it very much.  I've been working on standing up more in the shower, instead of sitting on my stool.  My balance is still not where I feel completely comfortable, so standing on wet, slippery tile in the shower gives me a little anxiety, so I use my stool about half the time.  There also isn't really a way that I can shave yet, without sitting down.  But bathing, and getting in and out of the tub is a breeze now and much better than it was a month ago.  That makes me so happy, because I absolutely love bathing in my oversized, jetted, champagne bubble, chromatherapy tub!

Things are starting to get back to normal, finally.  I still walk pretty slow, and have a pretty decent limp, but I don't need a scooter, crutches, or a boot anymore.  I no longer look like a cross between Hector Barbosa and LL Cool J.  Although it was pretty awesome to walk like a pirate every day!

I keep making really great progress!  It's gone much better than I had ever anticipated when I first was diagnosed with the injury.  I'm so happy I've kept this blog.  Sometimes I go back and read my entries from June and July and I remember how depressed and hopeless I felt.  This blog has really helped me process my feelings, and hopefully it has inspired or found its way to help at least one person going through this!  

Friday, November 13, 2015

One At A Time Please

So, remember my last blog entry, when I was like "I don't have any pain!"?  Turns out, I spoke too soon, which I often do.  Allow me to clarify that I don't have pain in my lisfranc joint, or my navicular.  The newest problem to plague my right foot is my right ankle.  Grr.  I'd like to get healed from my Lisfranc injury first, without getting another problem added in to the mix.

I was at physical therapy, talking to Stephanie about last week's progress, and she always asks about pain.  I explained that the last few days of walking (especially Monday after I overdid it at work trying to be Super CC) my ankle was starting to get really sore, and kind of swollen and puffy.  She had my slip my foot out of the boot so that she could examine and I showed her where I was getting the pain.  She pressed down on a couple of spots (OUCH! Tender!) and judging my reactions, she was like "Oh, that's your blah blah tibial tendon blah"...which a google result showed me later as my posterior tibial tendon.

Apparently, this tendon gets really weak when it is not being used.  As I've not been using it for 4 months, and now I'm trying to do this fancy thing called walking, my tendon is having none of that.  Stephanie said that I was fine to continue walking, but I should not be pushing through the pain if the tendon is starting to get sore and painful.  If I am not careful, it could develop into tendinitis and once that tendon develops it, it is really hard to get rid of.  It feels like a little bit of a set back, because I was getting really used to walking whenever I wanted!  My only instruction was to just be careful with it, and to ice it with an ice cup if needed.

I got a new set of exercises.  Mostly they are balance exercises, which I HATE because they are SO hard!  Balancing on my right leg, balancing on my right leg while doing stuff with my left leg, and stepping up the step with my right leg.  Everything still feels so weak and wobbly and I need to hold on to something most of the way through the exercises, but it should start to improve and I can go longer and longer without having to hold on.  The best exercise though is that I get to "walk" in my shoe for 4 minutes a day.  Heel to toe, step with the left, heel to toe, step with the right.  I move so slow, and I teeter and wobble the whole time.  Who thought that walking could be so damn hard!

Next session... we will work on weaning out of the boot.  I'm kind of scared!  But also excited.  Mostly excited.  I see the Dr. on the 25th to get another x-ray and figure out when my next surgery is going to be.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

This Boot Was Made For Walkin'

And that's just what I'll do.

Progress with walking has been fast!  Scary fast.

It's been a little over a week since I was cleared to finally ditch the crutches and walk unassisted, in the boot still of course.  The first couple of days, I was slow, wobbly and awkward.  I could only walk the first part of the day, then in the afternoon I would have to switch to my crutches because my foot was starting to ache and become painful.  I'm not supposed to push through pain and I have been a compliant patient.

But, as each day has passed, the progress has been exponential.  I began to wean off the crutches more and more, until I found myself only needing them early morning and late at night.  The foot is definitely the stiffest when I first get up in the morning, and it feels like I need the crutches to get myself going.  But after a couple of minutes of walking around and exercising the muscles, I can ditch the crutch and walk around with just the boot without a problem.

Walking barefoot (or without my super-stylish 1 size up supportive shoe with Superfeet insert) is still out of the question.  



I've been able to take a few steps on my barefoot, as long as most of the weight is in my heel.  I'm not really supposed to, but there was one night in the wee hours of the morning, where I had to go to the bathroom and I forgot to bring both scooter and crutches in with me before bed, so I had no other choice.  It was like a drunken baby deer stumble.  And sensations in my right foot are still way off, so stepping on the cold tile felt like a sheet of ice in Antarctica! (My left foot was fine, and the temperature felt completely normal.. so weird!)

Other than that, life has been getting more and more back to normal.  I moved back into my standup shower with dual shower heads (with my stool of course).  I hadn't been able to manage to get myself in it while I was in the non-weight bearing phase, so I haven't used it in almost 5 months.  It was pure heaven.  I love that shower and decided that I am never again going to use the guest bathroom shower!   The first time I attempted to get in to the shower by myself, Nate was protecting me like a papa bear!  He is so afraid I'm going to fall!

My PT exercises have been helping with walking and I'm seeing some improvements in my balance.  There's this one exercise I do "Single Leg Stance" (think Tree Pose in Yoga) and the goal is to balance on my right leg for 20 seconds in my tennis shoe without holding on to anything.  When I first started doing these last week, I couldn't even let go without starting to tip over.  After doing them for a full week and a half, 8 times a day, I still only can balance for a couple of seconds without having to grab on to something.  That one has definitely been the hardest and most frustrating.  The best thing is though, is I did get clearance to workout on the stationary bike.  I can FINALLY do some cardio.  And, I've discovered, my cardio SUCKS.  I have worked up to 15 minutes, and by the end, I feel like I might die.





However, the idea of walking is extremely appealing and I've found it very easy to over-do it.  I work in a very large office building.  On Monday, I went in to work, and just had a lot going on that day.  I ended up walking the length of the building several times, going back and forth between meetings and other activities and helping out some of my co-workers with things.  I was helping set up for a meeting and carrying Costco-sized cases of water around.  I was trying to be my old self and I pushed it too far.  That night, my foot was swollen like an overstuffed sausage link.  When I got home from work, I basically stayed off of it until it was time for bed.  The next morning, it was so sore I could barely walk with the crutches and my ankle was getting shooting pains with every step.  I decided to stay at home that day, and I actually used the scooter for most of the day to give it plenty of rest.  The next day, it was back to normal, and I could walk again.  But, it was a reminder that the healing process, is still in process.  It's slow.  It's a marathon, not a race, and I really need to listen to my foot and my body.  Just because I can do something doesn't mean that I should.  

I find it hard to believe that I'm STILL dealing with this injury 5 months after my fall.  

Lisfranc sucks.  



Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Bye Felicia

I was officially cleared to start walking without crutches this week!  And I have nothing but progress to report!

No scooter.  No crutches.



Last week, I weaned down to one crutch and upped my weight to 75% on my right foot.  I was told to bring my shoe and "Superfeet" insert with me to my appointment, but not to wear them in.  I arrived, and Stephanie had me change from my boot into my shoe (with the insert) first thing.   I hadn't worn a shoe on my right foot since the accident.  It felt so strange.  I took a few steps in the shoe with the crutches.  I felt almost like a baby deer taking steps for the first time.  My foot and ankle felt so weak inside the shoe; the boot is much more supportive for my leg. She then had me start out the session with 5 minutes on the bike, and then 5 minutes on the leg press machine.  I did a set of squats and some balancing exercises on the right leg, and she felt I'd done them OK enough to be cleared to start using one crutch, and 75% weight.  Yay!  I was pretty excited, not only was this major progress, but I'd be getting a hand back.  I could carry a cup of coffee with me from the kitchen to the couch.  I could carry a plate of food by myself to the kitchen table without a crazy balancing act.  I could carry my PURSE again!!

I spent the majority of last week working on that transition, and doing all of my PT exercises in my tennis shoe.  Mostly my therapist has had me working on balance on the right leg, and I am working on this exercise where I stand in a lunge stance, and have a piece of elastic tubing hooked to the wall.  Then, I draw my A-B-C's with the tubing in the air while balancing on my right leg.  I look like such a spaz doing it, I'm sure!  I felt like I had made a lot of progress, and by the weekend I was getting around on one crutch pretty easily.

On Halloween, I dressed up as a "Bloody Beaver" and went to the Utah Utes home game vs. the Oregon State Beavers.  I decided not to take my scooter at all, and just bring my crutches.  I was pretty nervous at the thought of not having the scooter as a back-up plan, in case I was in a lot of discomfort or unsteady during the night.  But, as always, I jump to worse case scenario in my mind, and I didn't have any problems at all.  I got some comments that the crutches made me move like a zombie and it was an "excellent addition to my costume".. =/  The people in my seating area in the stadium have been witnessing my progress through these weeks, and there was actual cheering and excitement when people saw me walking with a crutch!




Yesterday, I went to another PT appointment.  When I arrived at the PT clinic, the elevator was undergoing repairs.  So the receptionist kindly pointed out the stairs to me and informed me I'd need to take them.  Are you kidding me?  Who decides to work on an elevator during business hours at a podiatry therapy clinic?!  Good thing I'd gotten far along enough in my therapy to be able to do stairs, otherwise I would have needed to reschedule.  This immediately put me in a rotten mood.  But, once I met with Stephanie, she told me I was allowed to ditch the crutches!  This was awesome news!  I'm still supposed to have them handy because inevitably I will get sore and swollen and I'll need them in order to continue walking.  After 5 minutes on the bike & leg press, I did some balancing exercises on my right leg again, and then some step-ups with my right foot on to a step, all in my tennis shoe!  Then, we put the boot back on and practiced walking in the boot with NO crutches!  I thought I'd be wobbly and unsteady, but I was so excited I was zooming around the room.  She said I could walk as much as my foot would tolerate it, but when it started to get sore I should use the crutches so that there is no pain.  I did have some heel soreness, and Stephanie said that was normal as there is typically damage to the heel pad when breaking the midfoot, and the boot doesn't have any heel cushion.  She instructed me to buy a heel cushion insert and that it should help absorb some of the stress on my heel.

One thing I have loved about this therapy and approach is that it has progressed at such a pace where I am not having any pain when attempting to walk and do these exercises.  I do feel discomfort for sure, but not pain.  And I know when I'm pushing too hard, because I start to feel pain, and then I'll dial it back down a little.  I've needed incredible patience! It feels less impossible to walk barefoot, but still painful enough that I'm not going to attempt it.   I should not be taking any steps out of the boot anyway.

I will have 2 more weeks in the boot, then we will start to wean out of it, so that I can start walking and wearing shoes on my right foot again!

I was so happy after this appointment.  As Nate and I were walking to the car, the first thing I did was I reached over and held his hand.  I hadn't been able to walk with him and hold his hand in 4 months. It felt amazing.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

The Return of FrankenFoot

It's been a little over a week since my hardware removal surgery.  Recovery has been great actually.

Yesterday, I was allowed to take off my dressing.  It revealed a slightly swollen foot, with two new incisions (one on the top on my foot, the other along the side/bottom).  Overall, it did not look that bad.  The sequel is never as good, I suppose.




My incisions are a little sore still.  I don't like the prickly feeling of exposed stitches. When the blanket touches them in the bed, I want to just pull them out.   I technically should be waiting until next week to sleep with my boot off, but I am cheating a little.  Shhh!!!  The doctor originally said that there wouldn't be any stitches on the bottom of my foot, but when I took off the dressing it appears there are stitches there.   Also with a lot of dried blood on my foot, so I'm guessing the removal of that pin didn't go quite as smoothly as anticipated :)

I've been allowed to start putting as much as 50% of my body weight on my right foot!  I am slowly phasing out the scooter.  I am only using it when I a) need to get somewhere fast (midnight potty runs) or b) if I need to carry something in my hands.  Otherwise as much as possible I am using my crutches.

I went to physical therapy on Monday, and Stephanie taught me how to get the weight ratio right.   It's a bit tricky to get, but we started out with a scale and a book.   First, I had to figure out what my weight was, and thanks to surgery last week I knew the number. She marked half of my body weight on the scale with a green sticker.  It wasn't a digital scale, it was the kind with a needle.  I stood on the book with my left foot so that I would be level with my other foot, since my boot makes it slightly uneven.  I slowly started to put weight on my right foot, which was positioned directly under the scale.  I started switching my weight back and forth between the book and the scale, and the goal was to hit the green sticker every time to hit 50%.  I did this for a few minutes, to get used to and comfortable with the weight.  Then, she had me close my eyes and repeat the exercise, to see if I could hit 50% without looking.  After a couple of tries I was nailing it pretty well!

Then I started to walk with the crutches around the room, learning to walk all over again.  Starting with all the weight on my heel, and then kind of "roll" my foot so the weight then gets pushed through the arch, then the ball, and then the toes.  I had to take small steps.  How did it feel?  It wasn't painful, but uncomfortable.  The best way I can describe it, is that it felt like when your sock is kind of bunched up in your shoe right underneath your arch.  That pressure you feel on the bottom of your foot, kind of crampy and a bit achy.  I thought it would hurt more quite honestly, but with the help of the Superfeet arch supports my doctor recommended, it wasn't bad at all.

I worked on some additional exercises before she sent me home, which included some squats, a session of 5 minutes on the Total Gym doing leg presses, and balance work on my right foot.  I actually was sweating pretty good, and it felt great!  My foot was definitely sore after all that, but it was the first time I'd used it in 112 days!  Wow.

Next week, I'll start 75% of my weight, and go down to one crutch, after my appointment at TOSH to remove my stitches.  I also was told to bring a shoe to my next appointment.  A SHOE!!  She told me to get at least a half size or a full size up from my normal size.  Between the insert and swelling, my foot probably won't fit into my normal shoes.  There are constantly just left shoes laying all around the house so I hope that starts to change.

As I left my appointment, she brought my scooter over, and I was like "Hell No!  I'm walking out of here!"  And she just looked at me and said, "OK, but don't over do it!"  I got that mischievous grin on my face when I know I'm about to do something I am not supposed to.  So, Nate rode the scooter out to the parking lot while I crutched along.  We got a lot of weird looks.  One guy stopped me and said that it wasn't right!  Haha.

It feels great to start walking again, even if it's heavily assisted on crutches.  It feels impossible to walk barefoot.  I don't know when I will be able to do that again, but I don't want to attempt it any time soon.   From what I have read on other blogs, that may take a while!  For now I am just happy I can have two feet on the ground.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Surgery....Take Two

I had my second surgery on October 13th, two days ago, to remove two pins from my 4th and 5th metatarsals.

I went in for my 12 weeks check-up appointment (it actually was 13 weeks but who's counting?) to see Dr. Van Boeurm at TOSH.  It was standard procedure, I was taken back to the exam room, whisked off down the hall for x-rays and back to the exam room to wait for the doctor.  Getting to be an old pro at this, really.  While waiting, I could hear my doctor on the phone arguing with LDS Hospital.  He apparently had ordered an MRI for one of his other patients and even though the order requested an MRI for the whole foot, they only did half of it.  He was pretty upset.  I felt bad for the patient, because he'd come in to TOSH to review his MRI with my doctor but now couldn't see him because of the mix up.  He was limping around the office too, so I can't imagine how frustrating that would have been.

I soon saw my doctor and he reviewed my x-rays.  All looked good, so he confirmed that we were on for surgery the next day.  He must of read my chart wrong, because he said that after surgery that I would be put back in the boot and continue non-weight bearing because protocol is 12 weeks from the procedure.  I was like HOLD ON A MINUTE!  It's been 13 weeks!  And then he reviewed the chart and confirmed I was correct.  He instructed me to make an appointment with Stephanie (my physical therapist) on Monday to start weight bearing at 25%!  Wahoo!  I asked if I could put weight on the foot before seeing Stephanie, and he said if I could figure out how to get to 25% by using the scale, he was fine with it.

I had my last meal, La Luna Mexican and Froyo from Yogurtland.  Quite unexciting, but it was delicious.  I called the surgery center and was told that I needed to check-in for surgery at 11:30 at the hospital.  My previous surgery was at 9AM, so I thought this was a little late and it would suck waiting that long to eat or drink.  Within the hour, a nurse called me back and said that there was a last minute change to the surgery schedule and that I'd been pushed back to 1PM.    1PM?!  That was really going to suck.  Also, my husband is going to a Java programming class Tuesday - Thursday nights + Saturdays.  I was hoping that he would still be able to go to school once he got me home from surgery but this would be cutting it close.

I also hadn't clipped my toenails since the injury.  I just let em grow.....  It totally scared Nate.  But I finally clipped them before surgery, the last thing I did on Monday night.





I got checked in, mostly on time.  They took me back and got my vitals.  Several things upset me.  I haven't had access to a scale in almost 3 months, and I used to weigh myself everyday.  I couldn't really get up on the scale anymore by myself so I just stopped weighing altogether.  I still was tracking my calories everyday on MyFitnessPal, and my exercise calories (which I burn about 600 per session, 4 times a week.)  I thought I actually may have lost weight through all of this, but nope!  I hopped on the scale to see I had gained almost 15 pounds.  I'm not quite sure how that is possible; I've definitely struggled with my weight in the past leading up to the injury but I didn't see this one coming.  I'd been going to a nutritionist at St. Mark's Hospital for almost 7 months prior to my injury and we still could not figure out how to get my body to lose weight.  So that was kind of like a dagger in my heart.  Then, the nurse took my vitals.  My blood pressure was way high.  I'm normally about 110, and I was over 140.  Then, she said my oxygen was low and my heart rate was too high (I was at 134bpm just sitting in the hospital bed).  Ugh.  What has my body done to itself??

I saw my head nurse, Laura, who went over all of my paperwork and medication history with me.  She also started me on an IV of liquid Tylenol.  Dr. Van Boerum and some of his partners believe doing this before surgery helps with dulling the pain receptors and can be beneficial in minimizing post-op pain.  That's kind of cool.  I also had to kind of explain a lot about how my NuvaRing works, so that was kind of embarrassing.  She was trying to get a gauge on the last time I had taken all of my medications and when we got to NuvaRing it became quite challenging.  I don't take it.  I put it in my vagina, and then I take it out of my vagina.  The End.

There was a whiteboard up this time with all the names of my various doctors.  Helpful, because last time they just all got called Ashley.  My expected surgery time was now 2:50PM.  Do they KNOW I haven't eaten since midnight last night?  Yes, they knew.  I asked.  Mega bitch was starting to emerge in all her glory.


I met with my head nurse, my admitting nurse, my OR nurse, and then finally my doctor.  He had me right "Yes" on the foot that needed to be operated on.  He also explained how he would be removing the pins.  The pin on the 4th metatarsal would need an incision about an inch long and a couple of stitches.  The pin over my 5th metatarsal (the one going vertical and I can feel it sticking out on the bottom of my foot...gross) was being removed in a much more barbaric fashion.  He said that basically they were going to put pressure on the skin around that pin until it popped through, then they would just pull it out with the pliers.  Why tell me that lol?  The good news is I won't need stitches for that method, it'll just literally be a poke hole.




 It felt like we waited FOREVER.  We were watching hospital TV and every damned commercial was for pizza, or sandwiches or buffalo wings.  Blergh!!!  Nate was playing the role of supportive husband, so, he also decided to fast right along with me.  I pleaded with him not to do it; no reason for us to both be cranky bitches.


Finally, it was time, around 3:30.  The last person to see me was my anesthesiologist.  He pumped my IV with "relaxation drugs", I said goodbye to Nate and off we went in my wheelchair down to the surgery room.  It was just as I had remembered, freezing cold.  I hopped up on the surgery table, they strapped me in and my anesthesiologist put an oxygen mask over my face.  He told me to take some deep breaths, and assured me that it was just oxygen.  That's the last thing I remember.  Was it really just oxygen?  Probably not, that bastard.



I woke up in the recovery room, to very minimal pain in the foot.  I felt pretty anxious though.  I have a really bad case of panic disorder which is mostly controlled, but I think they just had me on so many drugs, I felt like I do when I feel a panic attack coming on.  I was also thirsty, so the nurse brought me a cup of ice cold water.  I didn't stay in recovery very long, within a few minutes they brought Nate in, and within a half hour I was discharged.  They delivered my prescription pain meds to me bedside (nice!) and the nurse told me I should be good to go for a while because they'd given me a full shot of morphine right before I woke up.  Sweet.  But also not sweet, because I was super anxious.  But not in any pain.  The nurse gave me some Lorna shortbread cookies as we wheeled out to the car.  It was 5:30 now, and I knew Nate was not going to make it to school.

On the way home we got McDonald's and ice cream!  I was so excited to eat.  But I had to take it really slow so I didn't puke it back up.  I also immediately came home and started drinking my "poop juice" (aka Metamucil) because I remembered how horrible it was from the last surgery.  I settled in the my bed/nest on the couch and just drifted in and out of consciousness for the next few hours.  We are currently marathoning "Heroes" and I think I may have missed an episode or two.





So far, recovery hasn't been that bad.  It is different from the first surgery for sure.  First of all, this surgery took approx 40 minutes, where as my first surgery was almost 3 hours.  I only needed a light amount of anesthesia to keep me out during the procedure and it was not as deep as it was before.  I was not groggy for very long after waking up.  I also had been freaking out about pain.  Right before surgery my doctor said that if I rated the first surgery pain as 80/100 (which yes, it was the most painful thing I've ever experienced) than this surgery would be somewhere around 4/100.  I still expected a lot of pain, but when I woke up, I didn't really feel much.  After the morphine wore off, my foot started feeling pretty sore, so I took a pain pill or two and it was cleared right up.  I think the most challenging parts of surgery #2 are not pain related.  I have a whomping headache, brain fog, fatigue, nausea... all of that fun stuff.

So, I'm pretty excited about all this progress.  I get to meet with Stephanie on Monday for a weight bearing session.  I was also instructed to by my doctor to get these shoe inserts (Superfeet) for arch support when I start weight bearing in the boot.  He says they are the one of the highest quality over the counter inserts you can get.




Thursday, October 8, 2015

The Final Countdown

It's less than one week until my surgery!  I've just been trying to keep myself distracted and hoping that the time passes quickly.  I've already done my pre-registration and pre-admissions prep & paperwork, so all I need to do is show up on the 13th with an empty tummy and a urine sample.  Because again, I need to prove that I am not pregnant!

I do have an appointment on the 12th, which will be my final check up.  I am actually 13 weeks post-op, and the plan was to have this surgery at 12 weeks, but my doctor was out of town last week.  He will take some x-rays and validate that enough healing has occurred to remove the two pins going across the 4th and 5th metatarsals, which are holding the cuboid and cuneiform bones in alignment.  I will still have the screws over my 1st and 2nd metatarsals and in the plate on my navicular.  I will need another surgery in about a month to remove those, unless something changes on Monday at my appointment.

I'm so ready for this surgery.  Words can't explain how done I am with the NWB and scooter life.  The past 3 months are about to be behind me for good!

These days, I feel like everything hurts BUT my foot.  Mainly on my left side.  I still have pain in my left ankle that I sprained in the fall, but it's not nearly as bad as it was.  It feels like it might be getting better, but the progress has been really slow.  I've also got this really annoying pain in my left hip.  It's sore all of the time now, and it feels a lot like my IT band at times and radiates around my pelvis and glutes.  I no doubt have been putting a lot of strain on my left side and it has had to overcompensate.  I am balancing all of my weight on my left side a lot, like when I stand still on my scooter, or when I am hopping around unassisted.   I hope that is what has been causing that pain, and I hope that when I start to walk normally it will work itself out once the muscles are being used as they are intended to.  I'm just trying not to worry about that right now, and just get myself healed from the next surgery.

I'm not entirely sure what to expect from a hardware removal surgery.  I've read other blogs and talked to others who have had it, and it seems like everyone is different in the healing process.  I know that it won't be nearly as painful as my initial surgery, but I'm still being put under anesthesia, going under the knife and getting stitches.  It will take about 10 days before I am healed enough to have the stitches removed, and be allowed to bear weight.  I'm curious how my body will respond to this 2nd surgery.  I know the 1st surgery was much more traumatic, but it was pain like I have never experienced in my life!  Once the pain subsided, I got horrible dizzy spells for a couple of weeks after, and standing upright for any length of time resulted in waves of nausea and feeling faint.  I'm hoping that doesn't happen again.  I also ran out of energy really quickly.  Simple tasks of showering or going to the bathroom felt like massive feats.  So, I guess I'll wait and see this time around.  Luckily, I have some banked sick time at work!

The Utes are getting ESPN College Game Day this weekend for their game vs. Cal, and I have every intention of tailgating and going into the stadium again!  This could very well be my last game as a gimp.  There is a game next weekend, but I have no idea how my body will be reacting after surgery and if I'll feel well enough to go.  If I'm still taking pain meds and/or getting my dizzy spells, I am making the smart choice and parking my ass on the couch!   Also wait and see.  If not, we have another home game on Halloween and I'll be for sure ready to go by then!  I've even got my Halloween costume picked out, and hopefully I'm able to walk by myself, even if it is in a walking boot.

Nate's been lecturing me about not trying to push it too much while I am on the home stretch.  I was working on my pull ups the other day; I've pretty much lost all of my gains there.  I was telling him about it and explaining how I had to kip up to get any leverage.  I got a nice "talking to" about not kipping and how our marriage might just be in jeopardy if I managed to injure or break anything else just weeks away from being healed.  I did listen to him (a little).

Surgery is so close, I can almost taste it!  I wonder what surgery tastes like?  Probably like copper.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Nerd Rage

It is hard to believe that it has been a whole 3 months since my Lisfranc injury.  3 months since breaking my foot and shattering my navicular, and 11 weeks since the surgery to repair the damage.

People are definitely starting to notice that I've been on my scooter for a long time now.  If it feels like a long time to someone else, you can only imagine how it feels for me.  I get a lot of "How much longer are you going to be on that thing??"  I do a lot of explaining of why this particular injury is so bad and why I have to be completely non-weight bearing for as long as I have.  I still think most people don't understand.  I actually spend a lot of my day meeting strangers and talking to them about my injury.  Nate and I have a running joke of how many people will stop me while running errands and want to chat.  We've never made it one time out in public where at least 1 person didn't chat me up about my scooter or my injury.

The tops of my toes are. still. numb.  I'm hoping that gets better, the doctor said I should get the feeling back once the nerves start to normalize down there.  My range of motion continues to get better.  I'm working on my ankle pumps and marble exercises every day.  I found a new pain sensation as well.  I whacked my exposed foot on one of the wheels on my scooter.  I hit it right where my navicular plate is.  It didn't feel like bone, or muscle pain.  It was a pinching sensation of my skin getting caught between a piece of metal and the rubber exterior of my scooter wheel.  That's new!

The past week has been a bit of an emotional struggle because there were a couple of things I had planned for last weekend that never got to happen because of my injury.

I was supposed to be traveling to San Diego and completing my Spartan Trifecta.  For those of you not familiar with that, there's 3 types of Spartan Races:  Sprint (3+ miles, 20+ obstacles), Super (8+ miles, 25+ obstacles), and Beast (13+ miles, 30+ obstacles).  If you complete each type of race in a calendar year, you receive a Trifecta medal.  I completed my Sprint in February in Arizona, my Super in Salt Lake in June, and had my sights set on the Beast in San Diego (well, Temecula) in September.  It was my fitness goal for the year.  I set one every year.  And not only was it my goal, it was Nate's too, so I am the direct cause of him not being able to complete his Trifecta either and that does make me feel pretty horrible.  But... 2 outta 3 ain't so bad.




The second thing was something that played to my inner geek and stabbed me like a Morgul-blade through the heart.  I missed the Salt Lake Comic Con!  Last year, Nate and I went all-out.  We stayed downtown close to the convention center, so we could get up early and stay out late while getting our geek on.  We decked ourselves out in cosplay; he dressed as Dr. Krieger, from the Archer series, and I went as his virtual anime girlfriend.  We bought VIP passes, took pictures with Manu Bennett, Stephen Amell, and went to every Geekshow panel.  



This year, the Con was bigger and better, and had several actors from Captain America:  Chris Evans (Captain America himself!), Sebastian Stan (Bucky/Winter Soldier). Anthony Mackie (The Falcon) and my very own girlfriend Hayley Atwell (Agent Peggy Carter)!!  I was most bummed about missing Hayley.  I was so frustrated, sad, and angry that I couldn't attend my beloved Con.  But going this year just wasn't practical with my injury.  I'd probably need a wheelchair to get around, and the convention gets really crowded with people so that would have made navigating super hard.  I loved going to all the panels, and finding a spot to fit both me, Nate & the wheelchair would have been kind of challenging.  

I had to stay off Instagram and Facebook for a large part of the weekend, because between that and seeing all of the Spartan posts from California, I was getting pretty upset.  We are determined to make up for lost time next year instead!  My ever supportive husband informed me that this is what I looked like scrolling through Comic Con Instagram feeds this weekend:




Aside from having these emotional outbursts this week, honestly, the 3 months really hasn't been as bad as I'd imagined in my head when I got my initial diagnosis.  I thought I'd be stuck on the couch without a life.  Turns out that wasn't quite the case!  Yes, I'm still on the couch and out of commission more than I'd like to be, but I am doing so much more than I thought that I'd be able to.  I cook.  I clean.  I run errands with my husband.  I go tailgating.  I go to football games.  I workout 4-5 times a week.  I've added 25lbs to my bench press. I go to work.  I go to fancy wine and cheese parties at my friend's house. So while I'm not completely independent and there are still things I can't do, there are plenty of things that I can!

Only 2 more weeks until surgery!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

I've Lost My Marbles!

Ten weeks post-op!  And I had another physical therapy session!

I went to see Stephanie (my lisfranc physical therapist) again, and she was really excited for my progress!  My swelling is down a half centimeter in my right ankle, which she assures me is a really big number, as far as feet and ankles go, after seeing my reaction of sheer disappointment.  I'm only 1 cm off from leftie.  Yay!  She also measured my range of motion on my right foot, and I've improved 14 degrees.  14 is a much bigger number that I can get behind.  I've been working diligently on my ankle pumps.

Then, I got a set of new exercises to do for the next few weeks leading up to my 2nd surgery to remove the pins.  My favorite is picking up marbles with my toes (video below)!  My toes were super, super stiff at first but they gradually loosened up and I could pick up more and more marbles with my piggies.  I tested out leftie to see how she'd perform picking up the marbles and she was an old pro.  One day righty will catch up.  Also, marbles are hard to find in stores so I had to get them from Amazon!


video


My new list of exercises includes 2 hamstring strengtheners and a harder clam stretch.  I definitely am feeling the burn of an unused hamstring when attempting the exercises.  I trust and will obey anything my physical therapist tells me, so she thought that she was hilarious when she told me to crutch over to the treadmill, and then informed me that we will be doing some walking this session.  A look of sheer terror must have came over my face because she grabbed my arm and said, "Just kidding!"  Ha ha.. very funny Stephanie :)  Although I am looking forward to the day that we are able to get up on the treadmill and walk for the first time.  She did give me something to look forward to, however.  She said that the day I get my stitches out from my hardware removal surgery, she will see me back to back from that appointment with Dr. Van Boerum. And, we'll start putting weight on the foot that day!

I also had been having some nagging nasty pain over the top of my foot since getting my stitches out a few weeks ago.  I assumed that it was one of my screws or pins irritating the area and that it would go away once I got them removed.  But, the pain wakes me up frequently in the night, and I take my boot off and massage the area and stretch.  I also can only keep my boot on for a couple of hours during the day before the pain strikes and I need to take it off, massage and stretch.  When I told Stephanie this, she immediately knew the problem, left the room, and came back with a circular piece of foam.  She cut a hole in the center.  She had me point to the spot where the pain was the worst; it was not hard to miss as it was red, angry and puffy.  She placed the foam pad on top of my foot and centered that spot in the hole she had cut, and then had me fasten my boot as normal.  THAT FIXED EVERYTHING.  It turns out that my boot strap was just severely irritating that part of my foot and there was a tiny part of my incision that was not healing because of it.  Since she hooked me up with that extra padding, I have not had an ounce of pain! (at least not in that spot - it still hurts when I bang it around and I'm not careful with it lol) 





Also, last weekend, I was able to make it INTO the stadium for the Utes game!  It actually was much easier than I anticipated, thanks to the help of the hubby and my mom.  I tailgated for several hours beforehand, making sure to ply my body with plenty of alcohol incase it was a bad experience, but not too much, since I didn't want to have to use the bathroom during the middle of the game.  That was what I was most anxious about actually.  My friend had a great idea though, for future use maybe.  He suggested I wear Depends or some sort of adult diaper. 




We got to the stadium very early, about an hour before kick-off, so that I'd have plenty of time to get into the stadium and up to my seat, without encountering too much of a crowd.  It was a complete success.  The floor inside was nice and smooth with no cracks at all so I cruised along on Trumpy ringing my bell at people that got in my way.  I couldn't believe it actually worked and people got out of my way as I was rolling by!  Usually I do that just for the humor aspect.  Anyway, Nate helped me up the 35 rows to my bleacher seat, and much to my delight, there were people cheering me on in the stands as I hopped.  

"Way to go girl!"  "That's dedication!"  "That girl is still going to the game... awesome!"

I scooted on my butt along the bleachers to my seat, while Nate went back down and he and my mom took Trumpy to Guest Services to hang out until the game was over.  It was the 9/11 tribute game, so there were 3 paratroopers that dived onto the field before the start.  So awesome.  The only problem I had during the game, is when something exciting was happening, everyone stood up.  It completely blocked my view of the field and the jumbotron, so I had to ask what was happening every time.  But, that was the worst of it!  The Utes won over Utah State, and I DIDN'T have to go to the bathroom the whole time!  Despite of all that tequila I drank...








We waited a few minutes for the crowd to clear, and Nate left to retrieve Trumpy from Guest Services.  My mom stayed behind with me.  I didn't really want to hop down the stairs, so I used my l33t tricep dipping skills to dip myself down 35 rows of bleachers to the entrance.  I hopped on my scooter and off we went out the exit.  I had a group of guys following close behind me because I was going pretty fast, and people were scrambling out of the way for me to pass, and they used me as a crowd clearer.  At least I'm good for something!

I had a ton of fun, my team won, and there were no casualties.

Although, Trumpy was left unsupervised in a room full of other mobility assistance devices at Guest Services during the game.  Who knows what kind of trouble he got into.....