I’ve just got back from the surgeon to assess the damage on my body from my crash last week and in a word, I feel the same as my shoulder – shattered.
The short story is it’s going to take me six to eight months to recover. That means that by Christmas, I should be feeling 80 per cent better. Christmas … that’s so far away.
Essentially, after looking at my x-rays and 3D modelling of my shoulder, it’s pretty clear why this is the case. The ball of my shoulder – so the top of my humerus bone – has broken into three pieces. It looks a bit like a pie chart. The top, which fits into the cuff of the shoulder joint, is displaced and the outer of the the two pieces below it has slipped away from the main bone of my left arm. However, surgery won’t make things any better. Smaller pieces of bone could crack up under the duress of screws, and there are so many associated risks with major procedures (which this would be), such as infections and so forth, that the doctor believes the body’s own healing process is a safer and more reliable way to go. Luckily, all the pieces are in a good place for healing. But healing, sadly, takes a long time. It also takes a distinct lack of movement on my part.
I’ve got six weeks in a sling that is already making my life extremely hard. I can’t eat properly, wash properly, sleep comfortably, drive, type with two hands, play drums, play guitar, take photos, travel (I had Japan in my sights for October – maybe I can still make that), lift anything remotely heavy, ride my bike or do any other form of physical activity. Ninety per cent of the things I love doing are now impossible, and I hate it.
I don’t use the word hate often, but in this instance, I feel it’s more than justified.
Workwise, too, the next six weeks – with the World Cup and Tour de France upon us at SBS – will be the busiest ever. This could not have come at a worse time vocationally, but I’ll do everything in my power to make sure my amazing team doesn’t suffer.
When the words “six months” spilled from the surgeon’s lips, I’m sure I visibly deflated. It’s so disappointing. Of course it could have been far worse, but as well as depressed, I felt an overwhelming need to find the fucker (excuse me) that made this happen and smash his head against a brick wall until it resembled something akin to my currently destroyed shoulder joint. Call it fate or whatever, but after working so hard to get my life vaguely back on track over the past six months, this landed like an atomic bomb in my lap today. It all seems so grossly unfair. Perhaps it’s karma, who knows, but after this, I reckon I’ve done my time and I’m due some pretty sensational life happenings.
So it’s not all doom and gloom. I’m more than confident I can get through this and when rehabilitation and physiotherapy starts in a couple of months, I’m going to work my ring off to get fitter than I was before this even happened. If I’ve gained anything over the past year, it’s resilience, and a small part of me is actually looking forward to the challenge. That’s not something I could have said a while ago, so I’ve certainly changed for the better on that front.
Bring it on, I say. Let’s do this. Tomorrow is a new start, and today is just one more I don’t have to get through before this is all over.