‘Cause I’m Brokennn

I swear, y’all. Someone is definitely doing Brujeria on me. I just KNOW IT.

I know I haven’t updated in a good long while (that update post is coming!), but I just have to write about my latest misfortune.

I had already decided that enough is enough: I was going to lose weight. I needed to get my head back in the game and get back to Keto (the best way for me to lose weight, personally) and start walking again. Walking, not running, because back in June I’d twisted my ankle at work, which caused a domino-effect of problems for my right leg. The ankle was sprained, my ACL and MCL were strained and my meniscus had tears in it. My sciatic nerve was giving me trouble and I had pains in my hamstring all the way up to my lumbar. I had weeks of physical therapy to help me get on the mend.

So fast forward. Emily joined volleyball and she loves it. I was getting out of work, going to physical therapy, rushing to pick up Emily from practice and then going to visit mom at the nursing home. Then I’d get home and make dinner (or picked up dinner when I was too exhausted). It got to the point where I excused myself from physical therapy because it was just too much. I was only to go in for bi-monthly updates.

During Emily’s last volleyball game there was a popular Instagram photographer taking photos of the crowd and action shots, and of course uploading them to Instagram later. To my absolute horror, a photo of me sitting next to Mario, with Emily’s friends cheering her on in the background and Alaethia and Jaylen directly on the bleacher under us is posted—and I look like a SENORA!! With jiggly senora arms, triple chin and everything! It was another 100 degree day and my curly hair was up in a God-awful bun. I was absolutely mortified. And that was the moment that I decided I was going to “Lose 40 Before I Turn 40”. And ok, yes—that seems completely unattainable because I turn 40 in 5 months, but I was using it as motivation!

I was on a roll. I had started to walk on my treadmill (watching “You” on Netflix made the time pass by quickly) for 30 minutes. I was also sticking to Keto after a weekend of the kids having their Halloween parties (and binging on Hot Cheetos and cheese). I felt good. In the first week I lost 4 lbs., so that was enough motivation to keep going.

Then, Wednesday, October 27th comes around and I start the day as usual: dropping the girls off, feeling a tad sleepy on the drive there, get to the office, make some coffee, chit-chat with the guys and get started on my emails. It was Timekeeping day for me, so I got all my files out and got to work. The morning went by so quickly; by the time I knew it, it was noon and almost time for lunch (which I was excited about because it was rotisserie chicken salad from HEB). Suddenly, there’s a shrill sound blaring in our ears. The fire alarm. The guys said that we’ll usually get an email tipping us off about the fire drill, but we hadn’t received anything, so maybe it was the real thing?

We file out, along with the other departments. I’m holding my dress down with both hands and simultaneously holding my phone and walking carefully since I’m in my tri-color Steve Madden platforms and it’s a pretty long walk. We reach the meeting point and stand around a bit. Everyone starts walking back so we follow suit. I’m getting to the security post and raise my left leg and miss the curb. My foot wobbles and I try to catch my balance with my right foot—AND MISS THE CURB AGAIN. Only this foot doesn’t stop wobbling and twists to one side and down I go. When my bum hits the ground AND lands on top of my ankle I hear a loud *CRACK*. I say, “Oh my God,” out loud and realize the crack was my ankle. People start gathering around me, asking if I’m ok, trying to help me up. I pull my leg out from under me and I’m shocked to see that my ankle is already swollen. Someone asks me if I can get up and I tell them no, I can’t even feel or move my toes. One of the AG guys tells me he’s going to help me up and suddenly there’s 2 men helping me up, one of the CBP girls is wrapping her jacket around my waist so I don’t flash anyone and another girl, Letty, is waiting in her vehicle so they can drive me where I need to go. It felt like forever and like everything was happening so fast all at once. The supervisor on duty for CBP needed to get info about where and how it happened, so we waited in the vehicle. The adrenaline is now dissipating and I’m feeling the pain more and more. I call my friend (and guy I was talking to at the time) about what happened and he said he’d meet me at the ER. Just hearing his voice brought me to tears, especially because we’d just had a small argument that morning. I texted Jaylen to tell him what was going on, too, but he was at work and not seeing the message. My boss calls me and asks what happened and I tell him about my latest ridiculousness. He says the guys will drive over and bring my bag and one of them can take me to the ER/clinic.

Mark was the lucky one who got to take me. He helped me into my vehicle and he drove me to South Texas Healthy Systems Stand-alone ER. I was in a panic and still in shock so when they were registering me I gave them my insurance card instead of waiting for my Worker’s Comp info and I ended up having to pay a deductible (well, my guy at the time did), so that sucks. I’m going to have to fill out paperwork to get that money back. Ugh.

Anyway, they did my X-rays and it showed that my tibia and fibula had fractures. They splinted me, which sucked because any little movement hurt. I was kind of shocked that that was it and they were having me call an orthopedic surgeon on my own. They offered a name and a number and that was it. They sent me on my way.

My guy helped me into the car and helped me get settled before he had to pick his daughter up from school. He was a blessing those first few days—he even helped me shower and took care of me at my most vulnerable. But, like all good things, that came to an end, too. Heartache and physical pain simultaneously SUCK.

Luckily, Jorge, Mario, my friends, Linda and the kids have been great about helping me around the house, bringing me and the kids food and groceries and making sure I’m comfortable. Jaylen’s been a Godsend taking the girls to school for me, picking up groceries and orders from HEB and Target and taking me to my appointments.

The next few days were a blur of miscommunication with the orthopedic clinic—they ended up setting an appointment for me for PHYSICAL THERAPY and not a consultation with the surgeon. I was pissed. I couldn’t get the stupid ER to get in touch with the doctor who saw me that day to sign my forms for work, either. My PCP didn’t want to get involved with Worker’s Comp because “they don’t do that” so I ended up calling up my old physical therapy place, Texas Federal Wellness Center. In one day Malerie and Stephanie had me go in for a consult with an ortho surgeon, where I got more X-rays. They had me take 2 sets because the doctor didn’t like how something looked (I over heard him through the door LOL). Turns out, I had two full breaks—in my tibia and fibula. Another fracture in my tibia, talus, and the lateral and medial malleolus.

I’d be needing surgery. I cried a little when the doctor walked out. A sweet nurse came in a bit later and removed my splint and finally put me in a cast.

A couple days later I was seen by an imaging place where I got a CT Scan. Jorge took me to that appointment, plus the new orthopedic surgeon I’d be seeing because the original was unfortunately going on vacation. I tell you—my LUCK.

So the new ortho had my cute, pink cast removed (they sawed it off—I was terrified they’d nick me) and did MORE X-rays. We were there for almost 4 hours. I was impressed that Jorge didn’t totally lose his shit. They were going to re-splint me and let me know my surgery would be the NEXT TUESDAY because the surgeon had “emergency surgeries”. I guess because my bones weren’t sticking out of my leg, I wasn’t considered an emergency. I was so frustrated that I started bawling. I was in pain and nobody seemed to give a shit. Just as I’m wiping my face the nurse who was going to re-splint me walks in. He notices I’m crying but doesn’t say anything till we’re in the splinting/casting room. I ask why it’s going to be a splint again and not a cast and he said because the cast I had on was causing my leg to swell even more. I told him that the last time I had the splint I could feel my foot/ankle just flopping around in there an it hurt. He promised he would do a good job and asked me if I was ok. I told him how frustrated I was and he said I would be okay. So I’ve been told…

Linda brought me McDonald’s and took me to get pre-registered for surgery last Thursday. She didn’t think it was possible, but I’m as bad as she is when it comes to directions, even with GPS! It took us a good bit to find the building, but in our defense, there was no address number on it! As stressful as it all was (getting around, her pushing me in the wheelchair I borrowed all over the place, taking my COVID test and bloodwork and a urinalysis), it was also a fun time because Linda is a riot. She is constantly making me laugh. To thank her for her suffering, we went to Sweet Temptations and I treated her to dessert (I told her to get food but she and I only wanted dessert LOL). She helped me get situated in my room and I got to have my chocolate cake and Tylenol with Codeine LOL.

The days have blurred into each other and I’ve had my moments when I’ve gotten really sad (again, a breakup isn’t something I needed right now) but I’ve been able to watch tons of shows, play Pokemon Go, read, write here (this has taken me several days to achieve) and just catch up on years of sleep. This will serve as a lesson to me: be careful what you wish for. I asked for a BREAK and boy did I get one!

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