If you're going to see me in a group situation this month, don’t read this entry. Anything you read here will most likely be embellished socially later.
I have a Tayshaun Prince arm. By the time it gets to the wrist it's only skin and bone. From the right angle – which depressingly is from top down – it looks skeletal. The majority of bulk in my left forearm is scar tissue. My surgeon ordered X-rays to examine the metal button on my ulna that staples on the reattached tendon, but really he could have just run his fingers along my arm to check any detail of its skeleton.
I had my cast removed on Tuesday by a small saw that vibrates instead of spins. It was still pretty freaky having my arm hacked into for 15 minutes albeit stopping millimeters from skin. At one stage the nurse that was mining for biology put the saw down too quickly on the table and it took less than a second to hack a nice line into the plastic covering the leather. Not that another scar couldn't go amiss.
Now outside the cast my wrist feels like it's filled with concrete. Curling down or up cannot happen. Twisting the palm to face the floor or ceiling was equally stunted but in 36 hours I have gained a few degrees. I have to wait two months for my next check-up and I am not starting rehab until after that consultancy. I have a removable splint until then. November seems very very far away.
But this was all expected. After losing the cast my surgeon told me to rotate my wrist to face the roof and my lip curled more than my hand did, but he said "good". Same again when I managed two degrees of oscillation to try and face the floor.
I have all this extra sleeve on my left side. Itching it straight after felt like the best thing in the world! Actually, no, being able to hug properly again felt like the best thing in the world.
So much of this recovery is going to come down to patience, and I can do that. I still wonder how I even got injured to begin within. My bicep, tricep and bicep-brachia all atrophied and based on my experience with DOMS I figure in another five days I will be able to position my forearm without internal expletives.
I have scars everywhere, and skin rash all over my arm. I've scrubbed about three layers of dead skin away and still I find more. By all this I'm guessing I'm definitely not going to wake up mid-September 2008 and discover this was all a dream.
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The woman with the fake tan stepped into my office, sat across from my desk and lit a cigarette.
At least, she would, sometime in the next 20 minutes. Smelling the future has advantages, but precision isn’t one of them.