Posted by sean on November 27, 2019 at 8:13 am in Health with No Comments

Light at the End of the Tunnel

After I hit rock bottom, things started to improve.

Just as fast as they had arrived, the delusions and disturbing dreams ceased. I was back in the land of reality and normality… well, “normality” is certainly debatable!

The physiotherapists, who I normally hate, but had been desperate to see, even arrived; meaning that you should be careful what you wish for.

After a rather heated conversation, where Claire, my Dad and I explained to a group of physios what it was and was not possible for me to do, we found a way in which we could all work together.

Across the opening days of my second week in Southmead, I was brought to the edge of the bed and coached into standing. This may sound very basic stuff, but remember that up until this point, I had been led flat on my back, for an entire week. My two arms both remained very painful, following multiple fractures, and I had broken a leg. To add to the complexity of this military operation, I was in the unfortunate situation whereby, up until the accident, I would always use my hands and arms to push myself upwards, from seated positions. Now that these limbs were broken, absolutely no weight could be put through them.

Despite this setback, I managed to persevere with the physiotherapy, discovering improvements on a daily basis.

I was told that I was now too fit to remain in Southmead and that I should be sent closer to home – the Royal United Hospital – for rehabilitation. After a Tuesday evening of great stress, where at one point it looked like I would be transferred during the middle of the night, I was moved on Wednesday afternoon.

My new ward was called Pierce – one of a few trauma and orthopaedic wards within the RUH. While I still dislike being in hospital, I was round the corner from home, and the entire ward seemed a much more pleasant place to be. Was it the case that I was almost happy?

I will admit to wondering where the hell I had been sent, initially; when, on the first evening, an elderly man demanded to speak with his wife. Considering the time, the nursing staff refused to allow him to ring his other half, instead promising him access to a telephone in the morning. This resulted in the man screaming for an hour. By his own admission, this was in an act of defiance, against what he felt to be an unfair decision. He would repeatedly soil himself and the bed, presumably as part of a dirty protest – I’ve never encountered one of these, but judging by the stress caused to the poor nurses, would reccomend anyone protesting outside the Houses of Parliament to do the same and shit – ensuring you are standing in a suitable wind path, to carry the stench towards Boris. Never had I been more grateful to be wearing my BiPap mask over my mouth and nose.

The physios at the RUH were fantastic – as was every member of staff on Pierce Ward. Between us, we worked hard on my exercises and at the time of writing this (the morning of 27th November), I am able to get out of bed and transfer to a wheelchair. The next step is to perform this trick with Claire, as my glamorous assistant. Once we have accomplished this, I’ll be free to be discharged home! The moment of truth will be revealed later this morning…

The pain in my arms has been easing with each new day. Since arriving at Bath, I have even been able to use my phone, which has allowed me to start blogging again, amongst many other things. With a little thanks to my contacts in the IT Department, I found a WiFi access point, allowing me to watch last night’s Leeds game – which was great, considering that they won the match in the final minute, to go top of the league.

I found audiobooks a Godsend, and was listening to them for many days before my hands would allow me to start typing blog posts. I managed to listen to the recently released “100 Years of Leeds United” – over 15 hours long, but excellent throughout. It certainly kept me entertained and made the time go quicker.

I now feel that I have been able to recap all the main topics surrounding my accident and hospital stays. As long as I remain in the RUH (hopefully not much longer), I’ll continue to blog. In fact, I’ll blog when I’m back home too – you lucky people.

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