When I asked my doctor about running and biking yesterday, he asked me, "how long does it take a fractured bone to heal?" I'm a nurse and I know the answer is at least six weeks. Why had I been thinking it would only take my fractured bone ten days? I guess I was in fantasy land. Not only can't I run and bike outdoors yet, I also can't return to work, which really surprised me. I hadn't even bothered to start filling out the disability papers because I had assumed I would be returning to work before disability kicked in. So yesterday was a mad scramble with a second trip to the doctor's office to bring him papers he needed to fill out, printing out and filling out and FAXing papers of my own, making phone calls and sending e-mails, and generally doing all the clerical stuff I was supposed to have done last week. This is the sort of thing I hate to do. Add to that the fact that I had been brought abruptly back to reality about the extent of my injury, and Kevin was faced with a very unhappy and grumpy woman when he got home from work last evening.
The most helpful thing my doctor told me yesterday was "if it's hurting, it's not healing." He went on to explain that my muscles supporting the injured area were tense and swollen from guarding the injury because it was hurting, cutting off healing blood flow to the area. He also pointed out that my usually low blood pressure has been extremely high since my accident, most likely from pain. I had been thinking I had to suffer through the pain and actually hadn't had a single minute without pain since the accident. I wasn't taking any pain medication, wasn't wearing my collar as much as I should, was doing activities I shouldn't be doing, wasn't using heat or massage or anything else to ease the discomfort. I was approaching my injury like I would approach a long and difficult Ultra. I was trying to tough my way through it.
So I started today with a new attitude. I want this to heal as well and as fast as possible. I am determined to do everything I can to achieve this! Instead of doing something I'm not supposed to, I rode the bike on the trainer on the back deck for exercise this morning. I have my collar on as I type this, I am going to go soak in a hot tub in a few minutes, and I will take some Motrin if I need it during the day. Pampering myself is going to be quite a challenge for me, but I think I'm up to the task!