Performing Seal. Chapter 23

This was a big week; depending on my performance, the home physio and GP had my holiday in the palm of their hands. Although I had made many mistakes when it came to holiday planning, this time it was in someone else’s hands. I was keeping everything crossed as the departure date was imminent.

First up-the physio, they had called ahead to ask if I was happy with a student attending. This was quite an interesting prospect after all there were more than a few learning opportunities for medical staff on my journey so having the chance to influence someone fresh out of the wrapper was mouthwatering.

It’s crazy how much I was looking forward to this appointment, I felt like a kid on Christmas Eve. They arrived on time and the student asked permission to lead the session. We identified the priorities; “I cannot sit, I’m hoping to go on holiday and struggling to walk”. This young man, was confident, listened attentively to my explanation and reassured me with several nods of understanding that felt so genuine, which was something I had seen so infrequently from some medical professionals. So far so good.

He advised that the pool on holiday would be ideal for exercising my leg, walking but no swimming that was too vigorous. My heart skipped a beat – did he just say that! my eyes popped as a result of the heart skipping. I digested this statement and quickly flicked my gaze to the senior physio who had accompanied him. She didn’t appear fazed nor was she forcing these words back in to his mouth, instead she was looking at him intently assessing his guidance and advice without a flinch. It must be ok to go, could that be right?

“Let’s get you sitting” and within minutes he had me standing on my good leg, curling the bad leg behind me. I had to do 30 a day, no more no less. I felt like a performing seal, my tongue protruding from my mouth and gasping loudly with each repetition. (Did I just make that noise?) Such was the level of concentration I’d lost touch with reality. Fair play to him, his good manners ensured that he contained his laughter at this performance. “Next let’s introduce some weight bearing on the bad leg”. He encouraged me to stand on one leg, both hands steadying me on the settee against another fall. A performing seal now a flaming flamingo, nevertheless I was so elated at being able to achieve this.

After a few travails up and down the red carpet he had me ready for the catwalk with an improved technique for using the crutches. I was really working it now. “Take a hot water bottle on the plane they can fill it for you, get some mobility assistance and you’ll be fine”. I asked about DVT’s and they gave me some simple exercises to repeat on the flight. That pretty much concluded their visit with a follow-up appointment after the holiday. I actually want to jump for joy ( don’t worry I won’t yet).

The blood test results revealed a slight improvement in my blood levels, certainly enough to allow me to get away. Again some advice from the GP about DVT’s and I was good to go. Finally I could pack the case. However I had one last test to pass, and it was significant.

The final test was an indulgence I had been denied since before the accident. It was a social occasion; a dinner invitation to sample some Tuscan fare with our friends. I could hardly contain my joy but I how would I cope? I had not enjoyed any wine for over 12 weeks. I put on some make-up, looked out a figure hugging outfit ( you have to make the most of this weight loss it wasn’t likely to last) and off we set. Conversation, music, wine, Prosecco, debate, music, company, fabulous food, oh how I had missed that.

I can confirm I passed that test with flying colours, yes normal service has been resumed and it’s true!! At last I am OFF to the Caribbean……………….

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