Happy Anniversary! It’s been a year since I broke my neck while trying to teach my boys how to play baseball. (Click here to read the full story.) Throughout the year, I’ve written quite a bit about my neck healing.
The process was a long one that involved:
- self-discovery (5 Tips for Sleeping Well with a Broken Neck and Living With a Neck Brace: 10 Things to Avoid),
- doctor visits (Life Without My Neck Brace: Week 1),
- trying to recover mobility without a physical therapy script (Acupuncture for Cervical Spine Therapy),
- getting physical therapy (Physical Therapy for My Broken Neck–At Last), and
- being released from physical therapy.
Although my broken neck was a serious consequence of my fall, it wasn’t my only injury. My neck is fully healed, so here’s an update about my other injuries from my fall.
What Happened Again?
I was teaching my boys how to play baseball June 30, 2017. Unfortunately, we have a large hill in our backyard. First base was headed up the hill. Second base was at the top of the hill. Third base was on the way down the hill, and home was, well, the back door of our home.
I had a pretty good hit and managed to make it to third. My older son was trying to tag me out, and I explained that the only way he could get me out was if he tagged me between third base and home.
“Well, run then,” he said.
You should know that he and I are very competitive, so I took off down a large hill at a dead sprint. I lost control about halfway down the hill, ended up skidding across our concrete patio, and head-butting the aluminum door frame of our back door. This means that I also body-slammed our wooden back step, and I came to a stop with my eyebrow sliced open by our door’s metal threshold. He did not, however, tag me out. So, I guess I was safe at home–sort of.
My Head and Face
When I head-butted the metal door wrap, I hit it so hard that I left a dent and pieces of baked-on paint came off onto my hair. It took days for the paint to fully come out. Even after I washed my hair for the first time post-accident, there were still little bits of paint stuck in there.
The impact left me with a dent on the right side of my forehead. It’s not terribly noticeable all the time but, when I get in certain light at the right angle, you can really see the dent.
My glued eyebrow was the funniest of my injuries. Luckily, my ER doc glued my eyebrow shut instead of stitching it. After about a week or so, I started using this oil blend that contains orange oil, which is known for its de-gumming properties. As I used this product, parts of the glue would roll away under my fingers.
One day, I decided that the glue must be ready to come off. I put the oil on my wound, rubbed the glue, and peeled. At the time, I noticed that some hairs were coming out, but I felt pretty pot-committed to the project.
Unfortunately, I overestimated the properties of my oil and ended up waxing off half of my right eyebrow. As you can tell from my picture above, it grew back just fine, but here’s what it looked like right after I accidentally removed it. I texted this picture to my eyebrow gal, Ashley. She was not amused.
When I fell, I banged my left thigh on our wooden back step. It left quite a bruise. This was by far the worst bruise I’ve ever had. It was amazing to see the different colors that emerged day after day and even week after week.
After about a month, there was no more bruise left. In its place was a dent about four inches long. If you look at the yellow part of the bruise pictured above, that is about the location and size of the dent.
The only injury that even remotely compared to the severity of my broken neck was my right knee. As I was falling and moving at the same time, I drug it across our patio. The whole knee skinned up.
It was so bad that the ER insisted on doing an X-ray to ensure that my patellar tendon was still in tact. The wound was so bad and so large that even one of the large Band-Aids wouldn’t cover it. I had to use the large rectangle Band-Aids with a large oblong Band-Aid above it. I did not take a picture of this injury.
This whole time that my neck has been healing, my knee has also been healing. Even when the wound was fully closed, my nerves were messed up. It took months before I could even allow my right knee to touch the floor. I discovered this the hard way when I accidentally kneeled down to change my son’s diaper. The pain was so horrible and intense that I cried immediately and had to take Tylenol for about a week after the incident.
When I could apply pressure to my knee, I started applying special oils to help the discoloration and scarring. Then, after months of being pain-free in my knee, it started intensely hurting again. I started massaging it to break up scar tissue.
Now, here we are at present day. It doesn’t hurt and it moves just fine, but sometimes my 3-year-old forgets and asks, “Oh, Mama! What did you do to your knee?”
“Well, son, this one time I was teaching you and your brother how to play baseball…”
Thank you for reading all about my recovery. I know there are tons of folks out there who are dealing with (or have dealt with) a broken neck. Feel free to share your story in the comments below.
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