Decided to do this phase of the recovery blog through photos and video!
I’ve got quite a bit typed up for this time period but I believe the easiest and most entertaining way to blog the last several weeks is through photography and video. I put together a 4 minute video on YouTube of what my recovery has some what looked like over the last 7 weeks. Thank you to everyone who continues to pour out the love and support to me and my family! Love y’all!
It took about 3 days to get the natural flow of things going at home. The wonderful Rosiak family came by on Sunday evening to drop off a homemade meal and spend some time. My first Monday and week with Rodney (I think that’s what I’m naming the rod that now resides in my right femur). Tuesday was toughest day yet, however got certified for CPR/AED. The beginning of March Madness basketball with Doom. Also a little review of mt follow-up appointment that took place on Friday.
The lack of rest from being in the hospital had definitely caught up to me by the end of Saturday night…my new hangout spot, the bed, was definitely a welcome site for my tired-crutch walking body. I hated spending so much time in my bed at first however I had to keep reminding myself that this is an opportunity to rest. So plenty of time spent there for the foreseeable future whether I enjoy it or not. At least I know Apollo is enjoying the new rest-to-work ratio.
The beginning of this week, my Crossfit Charleston family was out in full force supporting me. Kathryn Sykes, incredibly strong and awesome young woman who just joined the CC family a few months ago; decided to whip up and bring us over Spaghetti w/ protein noodles: Gains on gains! You’re already busy enough and you find the time to not only make the spaghetti but also drop it off? Unreal. Thank you so much Kathryn! I’m looking forward to getting back in there to see how much more you have improved!
A few hours after that another Crossfit Charleston family, that took me under their wing from the beginning of my coaching, came over to visit. Scott & Debbie Rosiak along with their beautiful daughter’s Libby Scott and Langley brought us over a homemade Chicken Potpie dinner (The pie was phenomenal, and I ate it 4-5 different times in the week and surprisingly Scotty made the salad that was a HUGE hit…impressive bro!), accompanied by a bottle of wine, and chocolate cake 🙏🏼. The new movie and edition of “Beauty and the Beast” recently came out in theaters. Libby Scott, so very sweet and thoughtful, presented a perfect rose to the “Beauty” of our castle, Mallory 😊. After that we spent some much-needed time hanging out and laughing. Again another couple that when I first started my career as coaching, really allowed me to flourish as a coach by accepting my coaching style and also asking me questions, giving me feedback on the coaching. The Rosiaks not only help develop me as a coach during class hours but also as a person, with our conversations before, during and after class about things that go beyond the box. I like to call it, “Life-living Advice”: Information that is obtained from day-to-day conversations, that helps one to improve his or her life by learning from other’s experiences as they share them. Not a message or a specific lesson that someone is trying to convey, but just something smart that comes up in a conversation. Something worth remembering and applying to your own life. Whether it be Debbie helping me out at the 8:30am morning class with ideas of how to be more efficient with scheduling and financing or Scotty coming in to the 4:30pm class helping me learn how to approach upcoming challenges by sharing some of his past experience’s that he’s had in his career. Not to specifically lecture or force learn something upon me, but just genuine words of life experience being shared and exchanged. Y’all may not remember the conversations but I do and they really have made and continue to make an impact on my life. Through the years we all have grown closer as a family. It is amazing to really take the time and think back on the first time you met someone or a family, to kind of audit everything that has changed since. One thing that has remained consistent through the years is the effort, support and love poured out by the Debbie and Scott. For all of those things I could never thank you both enough.
And if that family hadn’t already done enough, Brenda, Debbie and Scott’s mom ended up, later on in the week, dropping us off a huge homemade shepherds pie! Brenda is one of my 8:30am warrior-goddesses. She shows up ready to work hard each morning and inspires me as she crushes the workouts, gets up with a smile and a high-five, just to head out and conquer the rest of the day. I am truly blessed to have y’all as part of my family. We love y’all so much and look forward to what the years have in store for us all!
The rest of the week was full of resting and hitting physical therapy as much as I could before getting too sore. Besides going out to lunch with Grandma Dawley, the parents and Mallory once there was nothing to fancy here besides staying consistent on the effort of physical therapy and doing the things necessary for other part’s of life to facilitate. Downloaded some software for surveying, going to start drawing pretty soon here. Also worked quite a bit on this recovery blog…A LOT more goes into a website than just typing and picking out some pictures. So tedious sometimes.
Crutch walks with Callie
Calf raises to rock music
Lunch with family
The Cat Chronicles
His name is Mango, (ask Mallory about the name – his personality is more like Aslan). He is the inquisitive, scientist of the group. He loves to sing the song of his people in the early morning hours from 2:00 to 4:00am. Always watching, observing, recording data. The first feline to approach my new leg, at the best time of course: when I was sleep…by walking directly on it. Felt so good. After that I have slept with a huge pillow on top of leg guarding it. Nights after he has tried to lay on the lower part of my leg. Hypothesizing and then testing, night after night. Mallory is now armed with a spray-water bottle on the nightstand. It’s not over…
Back to my Crossfit Charleston family being there for me in full force this week. Let me discuss Tiffany Peltier, aka Sweet T aka Coach Tiff! She took the time out of her busy schedule to give me a First-Aid/CPR/AED certification course on Tuesday the 14th that I had to obtain by Wednesday the 15th. This is just a small example of Tiffany’s kindness. Time and time again you are going out of your way to help someone else. You are one of the most driven and inspiring people who I have ever met. Your own story of going through recovery to becoming stronger and better than before is incredible enough but the size of your heart and your capacity to care is something I admire and strive to emulate one day. You’re an incredible athlete, coach, and person. Thank you for everything you have done to help me throughout my coaching career. I look up to you so much as an individual and leader. I must also congratulate on your recent retirement from 20+ years of serving in the Coast Guard! Thank you for your time and sacrifice all those years. Continue living the life you love with the passion you have and you will achieve anything you want. We all love you.
Tiffany Peltier aka Sweet T , Thank you again for your 20+ years of service to this beautiful country. You rock.
Her dedication and effort day in and day out are inspiring to everyone who’s lucky enough to know her.
Friday came rolling around! Very excited about the day. It was the first check point after being released from the hospital to see where I was going to be along in the healing process. I had my staples removed…WARNING if your don’t like gross things: scroll fast until you get to the pictures of x-ray’s with orange boxes! I broke down the follow-up appointment on my x-rays so it would be little easier to understand.
The doctor said I needed to keep doing the same movements that I have been doing for the next three weeks in order to allow the screws to set. Last thing we want is anyone of those 3 screws backing out…can’t just secure them back down with my DeWalt 18v drill. After the 3 weeks when screws are set, that I could start doing more movements with my upper body, core, and back. Hopefully I will be able to go to one crutch before then. Three weeks after the screws set (6 weeks total) the bones will have hopefully completely healed. When that happens I will be able to start really working that leg and use “pain as a gauge” as the doctor put it, to do as much as I can while still listening to my body.
After the enlightening doctors visit we decided that we needed to go see the movie “Logan”…it was a great movie, probably the best of the X-men franchise. Even if you don’t know the whole story line it’s a strong enough movie to stand on its own. Felt real nice to be out doing some normal things. Perfect way to end the night and begin the weekend.
“By your own efforts waken yourself, watch yourself. And live joyfully. You are the master.” -Buddha
Thursday night and finally my first two days back home! So nice to be sleeping in my own bed. Got up to the restaurant for some pre-March Madness basketball…Forgot about fractured rib…PAIN. Hit first few sessions of physical therapy in the home. Got back to some normal life stuff but mainly back to Apollo, my pup 😊. Being back home with him is something that can’t be matched as far as being comfortable and at home. Again thank you to everyone that have and continues to reach out and support me and my family. Love y’all!
Thursday night ended up being my best night of sleep yet, felt like I finally earned a little of the rest after doing physical therapy, a mentality I would slowly have to adjust after being used to doing some much physical activity in a day – to almost a dead halt in activity. It took me a day or two to realize how much energy the process of healing takes not only trying to heal a snapped femur but to accept this new addition of a metal rod into my body. Mentally the body needs rest as well so when I viewed it as a rest for both my body and mind, I understood how much of an opportunity I have that most people don’t get to have, especially for such an extended period of time. Yeah I’d be on crutches a lot of the time and would need a lot of help…but there are too many good things around to be that upset about a broken bone. For example: returning home to my best friend, to my bub, the one, the only: Apollo. He had a spend-the-night with my sister, Meghan and her dog, Alaulua (Ah-LOO-LAH) 😁 while I was in the hospital. Apollo was dropped off right before my Mom and I pulled up to home. He was so excited to see me until he saw how slowly I was moving getting out of the vehicle, so from barking behind the front entrance windows, ‘DAD! DAD! DAD!” and excitement it went to gently walking up to me, smelling, and being real docile “Hey Dad…are you okay?” Wouldn’t leave my right side when I was sitting down. So very curious, sniffing about and around the ‘weird skin-stickers that covered 3 of Dad’s metal-staple cuts’. Also, we have a lot of pets, animals that reside here that you will get to read about and see in the future… 3 cats. 2 dogs. 1 Max 🤣. So I think Apollo was hovering around that right side to be a little protective of anyone or thing getting too close. One thing that stinks the most about being one leg-down is not being to wrestle with the big dude. Soon enough.
Nothing like being back home. I felt an immediate wave of relief getting into the house. Also, once I maneuvered and navigated through the entire downstairs and upstairs, I got a little more confidence and reassurance that: this is the least amount of weight I’ll be able to put on and range of motion I will have in that right leg. Another testament to Crossfit Charleston, among the family-community that is established there, is the actual programming and training of the body and mind. The mental conditioning from facing that “fight or flight” mechanism we get from just even showing up to the box to hit a wod or lift is something that makes day to day tasks very manageable. Combined with that “fight or flight” mechanism being engaged, the effort that’s poured out by anyone at any certain level of fitness not only helps the body and mind develop but most importantly , I believe what all exercise in any shape or form should push and grow: your heart and soul. For me in this current situation, that previous mental fortification has me looking forward to the challenges of moving around with crutches, getting in and out of vehicles, and hitting my physical therapy…Yeah it’s going to be tiresome and going to wear me out because I’m not used to doing it but it’s all for the improvement, that next day of being a little bit stronger mentally and a little bit better physically. One day at a time, one step at a time. For me that’s where the beauty and purpose of the crossfit ideology really lies and is really nailed on the head by the Crossfit Charleston community and coaches. Not to mention the obvious physical benefits the programming has provided me of my left leg, upper body and core being strong enough for me to maneuver on the crutches (very similar to locking out at the top of a ring-dip or muscle up). Also making my physical therapy on the legs a lot easier when I can apply as much pressure as I want when stepping and walking on that right leg and foot because of the control I have with arms, back and core.
With so much focus on my leg I kinda forgot about the fractured rib. So after a day of riding in a vehicle for the first time, we ended up going to Doom’s Corner (I’ll be referencing this spot in the future so I’ll explain it now to avoid confusion: My Dad’s fantasy football team name, also name of corner booth he always sits at👊🏼😎 in the Wild Wing Cafe @ Oakland ) – After laying in the hospital the last few days I couldn’t wait to just hang out and watch some basketball after all March Madness started in a week and these were all the conference championship tournaments being played, had to get some research-viewing in! It was great to hang out with Dad. Mallory and Mom headed to the store to get a few things we needed around the house. I could feel my rib on the way up to the restaurant, nothing more than just a slight point of really dull pressure. As time went on in the restaurant, I could feel that pressure building a little more – up against my lung as I was breathing. (Not really aware that the serious pain medication they had me hooked up to in the hospital was wearing off 😐)…After about two hours at Doom’s Corner, we headed home…by that time it was definitely more than pressure, the pain started showing up a tiny bit more with every breath. It seemed like laying down made it worse for a time, I was laying there in probably the most amount of pain I had been in since when they had to move my leg for the x-ray pre-surgery. After about 15 mins of real painful breathing, it started to dull and I was able to relax a little more and breathe a little deeper with each breath. Really freaked me out. I can deal with limb pain but pain when breathing is like a form of torture. From then on out: We RESPECTED the fractured rib. I fell asleep thankful that night just to be able to breathe without pain.
Woke up the next morning feeling great! First night sleeping in my own bed, we have a very relaxing little setup in the bedroom. My sister Meghan lent me her essential oil diffuser and with the supplies of essential oils we have, there is a nice rotation of lavender oil to sooth and calm at night time and then lemon oil to wake up and breathe in the morning. Also had the thunderstorm sounds playing on youtube at night time, game-changer for resting. So I woke up and hit my physical therapy movements provided by my PT Mike upstairs and then came downstairs for upper body work and crutch-walks! It’s not an insane amount of work but the amount of energy it takes the body to heal is still surprising me, after the session I’m pretty darn tired. However it’s the best type of tired to feel.
After my late morning of physical therapy, we put our little herb garden on the back patio and I posted up out there sitting next to them, trimming and watering the plants with the beautiful, warm low country sun radiating down…the outright highlight of the day. After being used to working outdoors for several hours a day every other day to going to almost no sunlight, it’s amazing how much that affects the psyche. After about 15-20 minutes I could feel my body and mind soaking up and enjoying the sun rays…similar to a thirsty person chugging a bottle of water, it felt like my body was doing the same with the sunlight. From here on out, 20 minutes minimum in the sun daily is required as part of my recovery plan. The human being is designed to be outside. Sweating and breathing the fresh air…Not sitting at a desk for 8 hours…in school or in the office. SO if you’re reading this and you’ve been sitting on your butt for more than an hour, stop reading. Get up. And go for a walk outside. “Pay now, or you will pay double later!” Plus it’ll make you that much more efficient when you get back on the project or task you are working on or studying. Alright I’m off my soap box, done preaching. The only real negative thing that occurred Saturday was my stomach not being able to hold anything down. Threw up two different times trying to snack on relatively healthy food, a slice of ham and a sip of apple juice. Both came right back up 🤢. That was extremely frustrating, my love of food was being diminished by the pain medication…a necessary evil for now. To end on a positive note, at the very end of the night I was able to hold down a small bowl of chicken noodle soup and that made all the difference in the world.
The messages and the donations were still coming in throughout the Friday and Saturday, again the amount of support and love I am receiving is incredible. God is doing truly amazing things. I am so blessed and consider my self truly fortunate to be able to shine light on His love with this story of healing and recovery. Which wouldn’t be possible without people like y’all and my family, constantly pouring your prayers and love out for me. Just going to give a quick shoutout and inadequate Thank you to the following people…
These two giving within the first night!
Thank you so much for setting the tone and reaching out like that. The following day these friends and family reached out and gave:
Brenda von Glahn
Again, this isn’t a big enough thank you but you all deserve a shoutout for be so unselfish and giving like you did…Another cluster of family and friends followed those days up:
Some of you may have been strangers before this but now I just see this list as a combination of friends and family. If I missed anyone, I will catch it next post and won’t forget! To the one’s who personally messaged me with words and prayers, I look forward to continuing our conversations! This goes to everyone, reaching out and keeping me up and afloat, not just monetary wise but most importantly; spiritually and emotionally, something that you can’t put a price on. My family and myself would not be able to do this without all the help that y’all have provided. Like I said this is hardly thank you enough, but I just wanted each of y’all to know that, I know. And I’m going to do my best to contribute back the way y’all have contributed forward. So much love for this community. Thank you again, I look forward to it all with y’all.
“You can’t connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future… Because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well worn path. And that will make all the difference… Your time is limited. So don’t waste it by living someone else’s life… Don’t be trapped by dogma: which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life. And the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work… and the only way to do great work: is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking and don’t settle. Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition, they somehow already know what you truly want to become. ” -Steve Jobs-
Two days after breaking femur. Surgery went great. No cast needed. The first real day of recovery and physical therapy. A few of my friends came by to visit in the afternoon, lifting spirits and setting my focus for the following days. Amazing to stand up after a couple days of just laying. Here is a little Thank you to the one’s who visited and reached out these days. You’ll never know how much it really meant.
Plan A was a success! Going into the surgery, my family and me thought I was going to have to be in some sort of cast or external support. However when Dr. Merrill came out after the surgery to discuss how it went, the question of a cast came up and I believe his response was a chuckle and then something along the lines, “It’s 2017, what cast?”. So from what it looks like in the x-ray: The rod that goes the length of my femur, is now my femur…until the bones grow back fully.
Post Surgery X-Rays Bottom
It was such a HUGE relief to wake up and not have a cast. All the support coming from the inside. Essentially my leg muscles being the cast by keep bones aligned and like I mentioned early the rod is now supporting the weight of my body until and giving bones something to grow back around? Wowzah..definitely a win for modern medicine. I can’t wait to discuss the way they got it in there at the follow up next week. So instead of 6-8 weeks in a cast on bed rest, I get to bend, engage, and rehabilitate that leg AS the bone heals. As that saying goes, “You don’t know what you have until it’s gone.” well here is the list of issues that the no-cast clears up:
Able to sit and ride in vehicles, not laid out in the back.
Able to sit in general
Up and down stairs w/crutches (which my home has bedroom upstairs, Meghan my sister which you’ll hear about a lot later, was already about to move my entire bedroom downstairs 😂)
Bathing, able to shower!
Going to the Bathroom…unassisted. (Probably biggest win for Mallory, my family and my pride. 😜)
Physical Therapy started day after surgery…
Initially we thought all these issues were going to be day-to-day things we were going to have to face. Of course my family showed no hesitation on helping me face those challenges. There was the eagerness and willingness from everyone to take on these challenges that I believe was cultivated in those first several hours. From our collective experiences as a family to the outpour of love and support from the community, there was an attitude from the get-go that still remains;
“Do what is necessary, one day at a time.”
The night after surgery I slept until about 6am. Best night of sleep yet! Woke up and spoke to Dr. Merrill and he gave me the rundown of what he told my family the night post-surgery. He said unless I do amazing at physical therapy today that I probably would remain at the hospital another night. The news that I was going to be able to start PT right away was real nice. Finally, I can move. So around 9:30 my hospital physical therapists came in to give my new crutches a test run and test out my new hardware.
It went great! I took a lap around the 3rd hospital floor, which all the nurses were awesome! Really nice throughout the entire experience. Our little group of the two PT’s, Mallory documenting, and myself arrived at the stairwell to go through that learning progression, up with the good, down with the bad?! Went up and down a flight of stairs and then headed back to the room. Did some leg extensions on edge of bed. Could only get the right leg up about 45% all the way locked out still felt amazing to move it! Back to rest.
My awesome surveying boss, Sandy Peabody and his son came in during the middle of the day to say hello and give their support. The entire Peabody and Associate family has always been great and supportive of me. Always so understanding of my college education pursuit they have always been willing to adjust his time and schedule to help me maintain income while going after a degree. Sandy reached out the first day to make sure I was ok and then offer ways to work with me being physically out for so long. Blessed to work for a man like Sandy. Thank you for understanding and teaching me along the way.
Throughout the day was just a lot of rest. No appetite yet, so haven’t eaten since early Tuesday afternoon. Then around 5:00pm one of my Crossfit Charleston’s brothers and mentors, Steve Mantie came by to give me a visit. From the first time that his wife Jody and Steve came to visit the box, the Mantie’s have been a driving force not only to the family of Crossfit Charleston while inside the doors but more importantly, outside those doors for the family of Crossfit Charleston. To the Mantie’s: Y’all as a family have done so much for Mallory and myself. You are incredible people. I look forward to seeing what the years have in store for all of us as one big family. From the bottom of my heart, we love y’all and thank y’all so much. The amount of energy and focus I get from hearing and reading the words of my friends and family is incredible. Especially for my Crossfit Charleston family, when I initially got injured, all I wanted to do was apologize for letting everyone down…physically not being able to be the person to help anyone had me down for a while. However the more people I spoke to and messages I read, the more I realized how much I really have…
After Steve’s visit, one of my oldest friends, and captain of our kickball squad, Wendy Enis came by with a HUGE Spiderman bag full of Rice Crispy Treats, Oreos, Reese’s Eggs, Starburst, and several books for me to read. One of which had been signed by the entire kickball team with some real powerful and encouraging words of support. My kickball family, those words mean so much to me and you as people mean even more. I love y’all. Thank you. I will be seeing y’all soon. Wendy, you got the ball rolling on all the support that I received from the community…You were the first to text me after the news had been found out. One of the most intelligent and sweetest people I am fortunate enough to call my friend. That friendship means more and more each year. Thank you for all that you have done and you continue to do for me and everyone that surrounds you.
And finally to cap off a fantastic evening of visits; Julia and Mike Meseck! Also going to be my Physical Therapist, Mike, came to check out his newest patient/bionic-crossfit coach. Little backstory, they came in to tryout crossfit when I was just beginning my career as a coach a couple years ago. My first classes I coached were the 6:30pm. Him and Julia, along with a few others (Chip, Jessica H to name a couple 😜) attended at that time and were in my initial classes I coached for the first 4 months. Him being a physical therapists, could have easily schooled me multiple times during the hour-long classes, whenever I would have a coaching hiccup or slip, on anatomy and physiology but instead, him and Julia along with those others in the 6:30pm classes, let me grow as a coach – taking my advice and coaching cues (no matter how oddly I conveyed them) and applying them. I never really was able to thank them for that until now. It was huge to my development in coaching. When they found out about my injury there was no hesitation from their side on helping me. So fortunate and blessed to have them apart of my family and him as my PT. Honestly, having that level of trust and comfort with a therapist I believe is probably one the most important things about a recovery plan. Looking forward to working through the physical therapy with Mike. Again, thank you so much for the help and thank you Julia for being a rock and roll superstar dropping jokes and whipping up your Chicken Chili that I hear is making it’s way over soon!
Went to bed with even more confidence and looking forward to the next day: Friday the 10th the first day home!
“Always, that which you most need is already at hand. It’s just your present belief in its absence that keeps it from view.”
Just the beginning of March 2017, my year was real busy but going really smooth. Joined a kickball league about a year ago, on a team full of old and new friends that eventually grew into a little kickball team family. It was another beautiful night of Lowcountry weather, the game was real competitive and fun, nothing unusual for a kickball night. It came down to the last play which ended up being my last play for a while. In a freak accident of sorts… I managed to break my femur, crack a rib, and partially collapse my lung. Simultaneously making my year broken, my hope cracked and life partially collapsed. However, all things heal, especially with help. This is the beginning of that story, the part that set the tone for the rest of this journey…
A normal start to a great week, headed out to the Elk’s lodge to have a fun and competitive night of kickball with some of my best friends. The game was a great one, close score all the way. Now it’s kickball but don’t let that diminish the fact that people are going all out while playing. I have had my fair share of diving, jumping, sprinting, throwing and cutting in the ground but that’s the thing about playing a sport or activity outside the normal positions that your body is used to getting into. This is why athletes train their bodies to the extreme but still injuries occur…So the last play of game came down to an out at home that involved me and a baserunner. The play was an all out sprint to home..the baserunner saw I was going to beat him to the plate and made a smart move to stop running and dodge my throw so going from full on sprint and tag, it was an extremely quick stop I had to make with my body in order to make a chest pass type throw at him from about 10 feet away, unfortunately I planted/SLAMMED my foot down, unknowingly, into an uneven spot on the ground, making my upper body rotate awkwardly and causing my right leg to torque violently …the momentum from the sprint/force of my body all came stopping onto that one point on my femur. I felt something inside of my right leg explode, paired with the momentum of the sprint still carrying me and my leg locked up immediately, my body launched into the air and onto my shoulders, ribcage and face where I came to a sliding halt. I rolled a few times in pain but once I stopped. The pain kind of vanished and the realization gathered, like fog over water, that something horrible happened to my body. I had to remain in the prone position, laying on my belly because I couldn’t move my right leg. The kickball teams nearby slowly gathered around me, my team first. Chris was the first one to me and he knew something right away. I couldn’t really feel any pain but knew something was really wrong…
Laying still face down in the hospital bed after a relatively smooth ride with a cool first responder I was transferred to a hospital bed and setup in one of the front ER rooms….the Xray machine was setup with the screen at the doorway where Mallory, the nurse aid and technician were standing. I was expecting to hear news along the lines that I dislocated my hip…the technician takes the first picture and a moment later as it pops up on the screen that I hear, “Oh no honey, what did you do?” from the Tech and a gasp from Mallory. My femur was broken. Bad.
I felt the explosion of my year of plans happen immediately; certain goals I wanted to achieve with my body physically, plans to go on my first airplane flight to one of my brother’s, Michael Mitchell’s bachelor party in Houston in 2 weeks that no longer was an option, financial goals that I wanted to achieve, coaching and training with my Crossfit Charleston family ..the list went on. So just like when I hit the ground and rolled a few times after the femur breaking, the news and negative thinking only lasted for a time. From a previous experience in my life, I learned many things. One of them being that, once you receive bad news in your life, you immediately have to change your thinking from, “Man, what the f**k did I do?” to “Alright, what can I do?” So I just asked God to help get my thinking focused on that. Not the financial issues. Not the amount of work I wasn’t going to be able to do. None of the negative. Only the positive. It wasn’t and still isn’t easy but that’s why you ask God for help. Suddenly and subtly I started thinking of the opportunities this created for me; Mainly, the climb back to full health with God’s love being the driving force behind it all. Another example, I have so many books that I have wanted to read, so boom, huge opportunity to expand my mind and rest my body. Learn things that I otherwise wouldn’t take the time for because I would either be working, training, coaching, etc…
Still in first ER room, these thoughts got me through the rolling over onto my back screaming at the top of my lungs in the most pain that I have ever felt in my life, WHOOOOOOAAA WOWZAH STOP. Then the first good news arrived, my kickball team captain and one of my oldest friends Wendy, had already asked me if she could create a GoFundMe campaign to help me face the financial burdens to come. This was within hours of the injury happening. Blessed. People started donating money immediately, strangers first. Blessed. Meanwhile, my head Crossfit Charleston coach brother, Josh was already texting with Mallory telling her that the Crossfit Charleston family had my back and was here to support me. Blessed. Then my parents arrived and the third good news arrived, my part-time land-surveying boss and my Dad had already spoken and worked out a situation where I will be learning how to use computer software to draw the field work my Dad would be doing. Blessed. Still in the ER bed downstairs ..Surrounded by family. My mind surrounded with the great news and my heart full of love..I was fully ready for the challenges ahead. Again I must thank every single one of you that reached out that first night within those first hours, you will never know how much of an impact you had on the way I was able to mentally approach the coming challenges. Day Zero was over and I was ready for Day One: surgery to fix the femur to come.
The following day was some what of a short one for me cause I slept the majority of the day off and on, however around 10:30am Josh comes rocking and rolling in with chick fila for milady Mallory who was and has been amazing this entire time. He and I had a conversation, the dude had already planned a fundraiser workout for me at the box, he had emailed the Crossfit Charleston family and linked my Venmo and GoFundMe campaign to it, and mainly he had ideas about how to get me back in the box , how to keep me moving forward, again using computer software to help the box on social media, opportunities. “No man left behind”is something he really meant. And it was one of the things that helped me start feeling like a human again. Instead of directing thoughts on the negative I was able to focus on these positive projects. One thing that had been universally suggested was a recovery-blog…document everything, tell the story as it happens, be honest, demonstrate discipline and stay focused. Not just to tell a story but also keep people that I don’t talk to everyday that have helped me so much informed on how I am doing. At first I was hesitant because I didn’t know where to begin when creating a website nor how the hell to even type one up. Again, an opportunity to learn. So I just told Mallory to start taking pictures and videos of everything from there on out.
After Josh’s very uplifting visit it was back to sleep. Dr. Merrill was great through the whole day before surgery. He visited me and said he had a plan A and a plan B for when he got into my leg and that surgery was going to be later that night. It was my first major surgery, first time under anesthesia, but honestly I was just ready to get to the next step in the healing process. They rolled me out of the waiting room of surgery, high-fiving my family was the last thing I remembered until I woke up after the surgery. Plan A worked. Rod from top of femur all the way to right above to about 3 inches from end of femur. Blessed. Again without the fuel and fire of the words and prayers of the community and God’s love…I would not have been as mentally prepared or hungry for the next day…
To be continued, up next Day 3 through Day 5…
“After all, few could climb Mt. Everest tomorrow, though virtually all could begin preparing.”