Guys, I’ve been reduced to a blubbering mass of self pity, I can focus on nothing but the knotted muscle and crushed bone in my shoulder. See, I fractured my collarbone on a bicycle two weeks ago. But this injury was not the problem. In fact, that injury was no problem at all, except for the 438 euros the hospital charged me to stand in a hallway with 13 other people for four hours. Oh, then they took two X-rays and confirmed I did not separate the bone (which I knew already), just fractured it about 1/2 way through. I was on a bicycle the next day. I went to the gym, and 8 days later I rode 40km through mud, up and down hills, over rocks and branches without so much as an “ouch”.

No, the problem here is what I did 8 days after breaking it –  I reached for my phone and broke it again. Only this time much worse. In fact, as I was twisting and reaching for said phone, I heard a distinctive crunch. I had just enough time to think “was that…?” before pain shot through my entire shoulder and arm. It turns out I crushed the healing break and it bled, leaving a hematoma right over the break. So now any movement pulls the painful lump right over the break and, well let’s just say it does not feel fantastic.

If any of you know me well enough, you know I have a high pain tolerance and I ignore illness and injuries as much as possible. Case in point: 3 days after surgery on this very same clavicle, I was in Oregon qualifying for a 125GP race. But here it is, one week later, and mentally I am a basket case. Imagine my general outlook on life after an entire day of trying to carry your arm around like a dead weight, while a knife is slowly twisting in the shoulder blade behind it. My outlook has not been sunny.

The best was yesterday, when I finally found a heating pad for my shoulder. They are not easy to find and I went across looking for one. I finally got home after 2 hours of trudging across town while carry my arm in the opposite hand like it was a wet towel, bumping people with it on the metro, and hauling it up and down stairs. I popped the heating thingy in the microwave (it said microwave proof) and it promptly exploded one minute later, spraying blue goo everywhere. Poor GP had to witness the subsequent meltdown.

This injury has made me realize I might be more vulnerable than I care to admit. In fact, it brought on quite a bout of homesickness for a few days, where I just wanted to lie on my old couch in my house with my dogs and cat hanging around near me (or on me if I let them, the big dog included), watching recorded episodes of Project Runway. But I don’t have my dogs here, or even a television, let alone a Dish Network or Tivo.

Oh yeah, and I have cut out wine for the next 6 weeks. Self comforting has been a challenge, let me tell you. Thank goodness for cookies.


4 thoughts on “Ouch.

  1. Ugh.. that sucks. I feel for you. Sometimes an injury like that makes us re-evaluate our priorities. I guess adversity might be good for the soul.. or something like that. My blood clot in my leg from my pulled calf (or whatever happened) is testing my patience. We need a healthy dose of patience.

    If you still need a heating pad, you can fill a sock or zip lock bag with dry rice (not instant). Nuke that and it should work pretty well. Do you have a sling for your arm?

    Hulu.com has a lot of tv shows. You’re probably familiar with it though.

    Hang in there! Things should get better.. even if it doesn’t seem like it now.

  2. Pegmonkey – THANK YOU for the rice-in-the-sock suggestion. It works great! And heats fast and I don’t need to worry about explosions! A small point of light in my painful day.

    I have a figure 8 that I wear to protect the break but I can only take it for so long before I need to allow my shoulder to move a little bit more due to the knotted ball of muscle/tendons/gristle/whatever that feels like an alien in my shoulder.

  3. Britt, So sorry to read about your misery. It sounds awful. I recommend Irish Whiskey shots — as many as needed.

  4. Pingback: It is winter and that means cold/flu/phlegm ball time! « Britt at Large

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