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Betty_B : 2 weeks post break & insurance referral tango + firs OS appt
Diary entry posted Sun 6:14am 22 March 2015

The first couple days were awful. Fortunately that first day, the idea crossed my mind to use a wheeled office chair to get around and carry stuff, though I didn't do much of that between the pain and not feeling comfortable on my crutches. Not to mention the swelling and my foot turning totally purple every time I put it down for 2-3 minutes. We had to figure out where I was going to sleep since my bed is down two flights of stairs. At this point not only was I incapable of going up OR down, but if we had a fire, there's no way I'd make it out. Our couch was uncomfortable, impossible to roll over on, and I was too tall for it to be a reasonable option so we ended up putting a mattress on the living room floor which ended up being easier to get off/on than I expected. The ER doc gave me instructions to ice and elevate 23 hours a day and only to put it down for meals and bathroom breaks. Difficult with two kids, 4 & 9, but I did my best. The icing was useless however, it never penetrated the splint no matter what I did. I made it through the weekend and Monday came.

Before calling to find an OS, I needed to touch base with my insurance company to find out if I needed a referral to be covered. Of course, being closed on weekends, everyone and their grandmother was calling on Monday and I had to leave a message. As my luck would have it, my return call, which stated that I did need a referral from my PCP didn't come until Tuesday at 5:30 pm. My PCP's office closed at 5.

Wednesday morning, I called my PCP and they called me back with a referral that afternoon but stated that they were swamped with referrals and my injury was urgent, so I needed to call the doctor myself and have their office fax a referral over for them to sign off on. I called and did so and the receptionist was rude and told me she wasn't sure the OS wanted to take me and they would let me know. At this point I began to panic as the ER doctor told me I needed to be seen within 10 days and I only had 4 business days left. We were at the end of Wednesday and my PCP doesn't work Fridays, so I didn't feel comfortable starting the entire process again Thursday afternoon or maybe even Monday morning. Thankfully, early Thursday morning they called back and set an appointment for Tuesday.

One week post break, my swelling was down considerably and the splint was now looser and rubbing in the most painful way, slightly on the lateral malleolus where my worst break was and terribly on my medial malleolus where there was a hairline fracture. I called the emergency room and they said in an effort to keep my bones from slipping out of their much improved alignment, they wouldn't touch me and they were leaving it to my OS. I began sticking a sock in the top of my splint to create a tiny gap to reduce the pain and it worked somewhat. As disgusting as it sounds, I didn't take my first shower until the night before my appointment, 9 days post break and 10 since my most recent shower. It was a nightmare and not at all satisfying even though I bet I lost 10 lbs of grime and yuck.

Tuesday came and I went to the orthopedist. I was still doing terrible on crutches and had a long way to go so I used a wheelchair instead. I waited over an hour to be called back, then another hour before I saw my OS. His nurses were sweet and although I only saw him for about 5 minutes, I really liked him.

He looked at my xrays and gave me my options - essentially surgery or probably never walking again. I obviously chose the surgical route and he scheduled me for Thursday morning which coincidentally was my parents' 30th anniversary. Great. My OS also refused to adjust my splint for the same reasons the ER did. I cried on the way home, but was happy I only had 2 days left.

When I got home from the appointment, I fell on my crutches for the first time bending my ankle all the way up and sending a sharp pain through my foot. Uh oh. Called my OS who added it to my chart and said he'd look Thursday.

Thursday morning, my mom got me to the hospital an hour late but fortunately I still made my surgery time. My dad had to work and my mom had my kids so I was left there alone and terrified even at 28 years old. I was prepped for surgery and got my xrays again. My OS informed me that in my fall, I had sustained a hairline fracture in my 5th metatarsal but it was uncomplicated and would heal on it's own without surgery, the immobilization after surgery would get it back to where it needed to be. I was relieved.

The last thin I remember is being told to take deep breaths through my oxygen mask which they swore only was giving me oxygen but I don't think so!

Next entry - waking up from surgery, the first few days of recovery, maybe I'll get into the three weeks after and possibly my post op appointment depending how long I ramble!

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 Sun 6:14am 22 March 2015
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