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Arlo : Darth Manoeuvres
Diary entry posted Sat 5:46pm 7 January 2006

Friday 7th January 2006

Back to work again today. First day with my new, big, black, bulky friend. OMG! What a contraption. I never realised how cumbersome a Darth boot would be.

Still, last night was a true revelation. For the first time in nearly 7 months, I slept in my bed with two bare legs nicely snuggled underneath my duvet. I can't describe the wonderful feeling of falling asleep on my side without worrying about fouling my leg up on an external fixator or banging my good leg on the plaster cast or catching the leg on a rough edge of the cast.

This simple knowledge obviously has some profound psychological effect on me and I end up having the best night's sleep I've had in ages. I wake up feeling really refreshed and ready for work, despite the heavy head cold that is still lingering that I picked up just after Christmas.

So I get ready for work and strap on my new black companion. I'm ever so slightly lop-sided as the Darth boot is taller than the shoe on my good leg. I compensate for this by using one crutch on the side of my good leg and this seems to work ok.

I used a good chunk of yesterday afternoon in getting used to walking with Darth as it is quite different to walking with a solid cast on - the cast and shoe have a flat base, whereas my Darth boot has a curved, rocking sole that makes the process of walking much easier. That is most certainly true, and I find that I can adapt to walking with one crutch very easy.

After overdoing things on Tuesday at work, I adopt a more cautious approach today at work, and I decide to use one crutch all day with Darth which seems to work very well. I finish the day off quite tired, but my leg doesn't ache anywhere near as much as it did on Tuesday evening.

I'm invited out for a few drinks by my best mate and work colleague, but I decline as I still feel whacked and decide to have a night in (for a change LMAOOO!). Still, what a wondeful feeling to sit down or lay on the sofa with my TWO bare legs layed out before me. Ok, the right leg looks like a third graders bad attempt at map drawing with all of the scarring and wasting, but it's all MINE and I know that with some good, careful physio that it will once more be worthy of to be considered for sunbathing, rather than to scare the local kids when they come trick or treating at Halloween lol.

Saturday 8th January 2006

OMG what a lazy so-and-so I am. I don't get going until early afternoon; I wake up around 9am but spend the rest of the morning dozing and cat-napping. Why? Because I can. No other reason. I look down underneath the duvet and marvel at the fact again that I can once again look at two bare legs, even tho one of them is less than 100 percent.

Now, at home, I sleep upstairs and because my parents house is quite old, the staircase is very steep and the stair treads are very shallow. The net result of this is that despite the fact that I am now tackling stairs with a lot more confidence, I still cannot safely (in my own opinion) navigate my mum's stairs on my feet; I have to virtually plant my Darth foot sideways to stop the foot slipping off the step which is very hard as your body naturally twists when you do this and simultaneously I'm trying to hold onto the hand rail - VERY uncomfortable. So I go up and down these very familiar stairs on my butt. Not great, but safe.

Safe is good!

So I sleep upstairs and leave my Darth boot downstairs - my OS has said that I don't need to wear it to sleep in as my fractures are very stable, which is just as well as I am now exactly 200 days (today) post-accident. I do still count myself lucky that my fractures are healing well and slightly ahead of schedule as so many poor people on this site have problems with infection, non-union, delayed union etc.

I'm due to see my OS on the 27th January but when I saw him last on the 16th December 2005, I forgot to ask him one question - he told me that I could progress from a solid cast to Darth, but I neglected to ask how I should deal with my leg whilst in the house WITHOUT Darth on. I will call him after the weekend for advice as the only thing I DO know is that my OS wants me to wear Darth at all times when I go out, which is fair enough. The leg feels weak and vulnerable without Darth on, and I'm not sure if my OS would be happy for me to try and weight bear with my crutches without Darth, even in the house. So for now, until I get to speak to my OS, I will play it safe and keep the weight off the BL foot unless Darth is strapped on!

So a lazy day for me gets interrupted by my work mate asking me out for a few pints. He's a persistent guy and I'm a weak-willed male, so I cave in under relenting pressure (two seconds of thinking time lol) and go down the pub.

Seven pints later, I get a taxi home and feel quite woozy. I wonder why lol. I order a Chinese takeaway to be delivered to the house which I demolish in about 2 minutes flat - Singapore spicy noodles and chicken satay, yum yum yum!!

So here I sit, gone midnight on (now) Sunday 8th Jan and finish off this entry. My evening of drinking finished quite some hours earlier and despite the two gallons of coffee I've swallowed since I got in, I have the beginnings of the inevitable hangover I know will visit me with avengeance in the morning. No gain without pain lol.

Well, to anyone reading this diary entry, I would appear to be the perfect example of the approach NOT to take when giving your BL the best chance of recovery - too much alcohol and coffee tonight, both of which are on the "naughty" list of things to avoid.

Well, alcohol is most certainly not a regular part of my life (really), but coffee is. I drink lots of milk and do (accidentally or incidentally) consume lots of calcium rich foods. I have to say that I haven't really followed the advice and tips re food and drink for the BL, but so far, it doesn't seem to have done me any harm. Don't get me wrong, I'm not poo-pooing this advice, and I'm sure that it will benefit those people that follow it, but I've never been one to follow dietary advice of any sort. Who knows how well I might have benefited if I'd strictly followed this advice? Not me, that's for sure. It's pure conjecture at this point, as I'm 6 and a half months down the line now and healing very well.

I'll continue as I am then for now, rightly or wrongly!

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 Sat 5:46pm 7 January 2006
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