Friday, October 18, 2013

Strained and Torn Calf Muscle - What Happened? (you need to know this)

Hi everyone. Having come back from vacation about a week and a half ago, I was in desperate need of rest from vacation.

But first, an update on my leg condition. It's been hard to walk around since I got back. My right leg still wanted to give out every once in a while, and just thinking about going up and down the stairs caused me to sleep on the loveseat downstairs in the rec room. This is the diagnosis:

So you know when your coach or aerobic instructor tells you to warm up your muscles before you start vigorous exercise? This is the result of neglecting that instruction. This is different from a leg cramp in the calf, which is massaged and relaxes slowly over a few hours or a couple days. A tear or strain (micro-tears) requires muscle repair and rehabilitation.

This is basically what happened:

When I arrived at the airport to go home, I was met with the check-in attendant who immediately said "Oh, here you are!" and then proceeded to radio to the pilot that the "last" passenger was checking in. Apparently the plane was ready to leave early. Never heard of that before! I got a "priority" stamp on my boarding pass so they could whizz me through customs check and away I went.

I ran and ran, and after reaching the hallway of departure gates, mine was at the very end... so I ran and ran again. I was so exhausted, but I just kept running through it until I arrived completely out of breath and a little wobbly in the legs.

When I went to sit down at my window seat, I turned my leg towards the seats to go in, and that's when it happened. It was like someone pushed the inside of my knee to knock me down, and I felt a little "pop" like two pieces of "something" inside my knee shifted. It wasn't painful, which was why I didn't immediately think anything of it. But the pain started after I sat down -- first kind of sore and then every once in a while when I moved it I felt a pinch that would make my flinch.

 Every attempt to get up and move after that (I moved to another seat to give the two ladies I was seated with some breathing room to sit down), my knee would give out again. And each time, the "after-pain" got worse.

I just want to say just how awesome the flight attendants were on my Westjet flight home. I mean -- exceptional. They checked up on me every 30-45 minutes to find out how it was going. They were the ones who insisted to have a wheelchair ready when we land -- just in case. They carried my bags out and showed a great deal of compassion. Yes it's their job -- but I'm saying, they did their job very well without making it into some huge fuss.

The doctor at emergency did just what emergency doctors do. They diagnose as best as they can from the information given, and then give you anything that would require immediate attention. Since it didn't seem like a major situation, a pair of crutches was enough to get me back home.

Next two days just got worse. I was unable to walk on the foot at all, and hopped to the bathroom on my crutches anytime I had to go to the bathroom. I really reduced my water drinking those days! But then it started to get a little better.

Physio started two days ago and Steve, my physiotherapist, analyzed it and gave me some exercises to do, just until it was too sore to continue. The best part was the cold pack machine which they wrapped around my leg for 15 minutes... and every 5 minutes it would slowly compress and squeeze your leg... oooh feels SO GOOD!!!

I'm relieved that I'm walking around without my crutches already. I can almost walk up the stairs normally though coming down is still a real hassle. And today when I received some massage therapy, he found the exact spot of the tear. Everytime he moved over it, I could almost feel the whole length of the horizontal tear. And it was indeed very very painful.

So just doing my daily exercises he gave me to keep rehabilitating the muscle, I'm hoping I'll be back on my feet and walking in the sun by end of next week.


Yes, there has been some progress in the kitchen. Dishes that were unpacked have all been through my new fancy dishwasher! And it's amazingly quiet. If I don't try to listen for it, I can't hear it. If I have some music on, it might as well not be running, it's so quiet!

I'm working on moving my piano back to its original spot in the room before I do anymore weather and temperature damage to it. I'm a little nervous about the condition of the hammers and keys. But it'll be nice to play music again.

I have lots more kitchen pictures to post, and am working on the before and after shots. I'm excited to show them to you all!

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