Typically, when I tell my friends about this, they stare at me as if I'm not finished giving account of the accident. The reason being that they know my high risk interests of downhill mountain biking, whitewater kayaking, hiking, and any other adrenaline production activity that I can concoct, but aside from bumps, bruises, scrapes and a few cracked ribs there has never been anything that has kept me from making it home to do it again the next day.
But this, which will cause me to be "laid up" for approximately two months, happened under "normal" daily circumstances. The only "odd" factor that could potentially make it interesting was that I was carrying one of our chickens back to its roost, but it wasn't directly involved in any way. I do believe that if told right it could resemble the beginning of a good riddle: "A man is lying on the ground with his right leg broken and holding a chicken..." A friend suggested describing the accident involving the words "yard surfing", but I feel as though I'm trying too hard. None the less, it happened as it happened no matter how I try to dress it up as "epic".
During this time, I've had some "suspicions" regarding disabilities confirmed along with learning a few new things. I would like to share two confirmations and one learned in regards to the walker:
- Building codes set by the Americans with Disabilities Act are a MINIMUM, making building access "easier", but still difficult.
- Whether or not someone looks like they are struggling with moving about with the aid of a walker...they are indeed struggling, so don't be afraid to step up and help in some small way (holding a door, etc.) without being asked.
- Walkers are difficult to use and if a little old lady has been using one for five years or so be careful around her. Odds are she's now strong enough to bench press a semi so don't make her mad!
The nurses said that I should be "ok" with a walker because of my strength (even though I don't consider myself associated with that word). After using the walker to move about indoors, I have found that it is a very good tool to "work out" with due to the need to push the walking aid out in front of me about 8-10 inches, lift my entire body off the ground a few inches, set it back down centered in the framework, then repeat until I traverse the desired and/or necessary distance. Being inspired by this, I have added a leg lift and a body lift exercise.
The day of the accident, I spent some time on the river in my whitewater kayak and was concerned that I was not "seasoned" enough to fully utilize the "oversized" blades of my paddle without becoming exhausted in a short time. I am convinced that once I am able to return to the river, that will no longer be a concern.