Friday, June 5, 2015

The Art Of Healing--Prairie Sherry's Way

It has been a week since my surgery to set and plate my broken arm, and while the plaster splint, cotton batting, and two ace bandages are hot, sweaty, and cumbersome, I am in little pain and healing quite nicely.  I am not, however, probably behaving according to doctor's orders because I didn't receive any.

The do rag is just covering a gaping head wound.

I found that when you break a bone around Memorial Day, unless it is sticking through your skin, you will probably be triaged as low priority. Higher priority are the holiday Harley riders who have smashed their helmet-less skulls on the pavement during their first ride of the season or the barbeque "masters" who have first degree burns following the fireball that commenced the grilling season. I waited five days for surgery after my dazzling fall on a rocky ledge. 

Looking down into the abyss that
proved to be my undoing.

Post op, too, seemed a bit hurried and sketchy.  I never met the actual surgeon while conscious, the occupational therapist didn't showed up, and I only had to suggest that perhaps I didn't need to stay overnight before I was dumped out of the wheelchair right by valet parking. The nurse didn't seem terribly concerned that my daughter would have to drag her drugged-up mother to the third floor of the parking ramp and load her into the car.

So I came home with no instructions.  Of course, having been through all of this before, I know what I should and should not be doing, but just the fact that I wasn't looked at sternly, lectured, and then given a printed page of things to avoid has given me permission to do things my way.

Day One of Recovery:

I go back to work as a cashier.  I work an eight-hour shift checking out grocery orders.  I also bag those orders one-handed.
10 pound bag of potatoes?  No problem!

Day Two of Recovery:

I am back to work again, but this time I bag adding the splinted arm.  I go home and wash the dog--wrestling all 18 pounds him in and out of the laundry tub with one arm. I decide to wash the other three dogs as well.  At 9, 11, and 14 pounds, they are a cinch. 

Next time I hope she breaks both arms.

Day Three of Recovery:

I work another eight hour shift.  With my free evening, I decide to make 10 pounds of pulled pork for my daughter's graduation party. I successfully manage the butcher knife without severing arteries.

Getting it out of the pot was the tricky part.

Day Four of Recovery:

I have a day off, so I tackle the lawn.  I figure out how to maneuver the Torro with one hand.  Did I mention that we have a hilly, oversized corner lot?

I fought the mower, and I won.

Day Five of Recovery:

Another day off, so I clean the house top to bottom.  My only concession to the broken arm is that I don't scrub the kitchen and dining room tile on my hand(s) and knees, but enlist the aid of my steam cleaner.  

I wonder if Ma Ingalls used one of
these in that Plum Creek dugout?

When I have finally settled down to a class of ice tea and a book, a gust of wind takes the patio umbrella off of our second floor deck, and sends toppling to the deck below.  I manage to close it and drag it up a flight of stairs to its rightful home.


Day Six of Recovery:

I break the only rule I was given at the hospital ("Don't remove the ace bandages!"), and I redress my split with one hand.  The bandages are covered in grass stains, pork fat, and cleaning residue. I really have no other choice. I sweep out the garage and wash three loads of laundry.

Impressive one-handed wrapping.

Day Seven of Recovery:

I have taken it easy today.  I met Prairie Eydie for breakfast, and then I came home to do some light gardening. The bandage really needs changing again.

On June 10th I have an appointment with my surgeon.  I suspect that he with then give me permission to go back to work on a limited basis and begin some light physical therapy. I will smile at him sweetly, nod intently, and agree to all of his suggestions demands. He is, of course, the expert.

Prairie Sherry  


A little disclaimer here.  In case you are concerned, I did none of the above while under the influence of the narcotics the surgeon prescribed. I ditched those right after surgery. Didn't follow the directions for those either.   


  1. Wonder Woman! I have not accomplished that much in the past week with two good arms!

  2. Just like a real pioneer! Nothing keeps you down :)