Saturday, August 21, 2010

The car tried to eat my leg...

The next part of the rehab experience the I left out was coming to grips with the massive scars on my left leg. After the skin graft was done, I avoided looking at my leg because I was scared it of seeing how bad it was. Before the surgery it looked bad but I still had the surgery. When the bandages came off for the first time it looked horrible but the plastic surgeon was thrilled with it. Grafts of this size rarely take the first time but mine far. The surgeon was NOT happy that I was going back to Plano and actually told me that if anything happened with the graft, it was because he wasn't the one taking care of it!  

Fortunately my wound care dr took very good care of it but I still didn't want to see it. Even though the dressing had to be changed every day, I made it a week or so without looking at it. The part of my thigh wear they harvested the skin was a different matter!  It was now a huge scab and had healed to to point where it didn't hurt for air to touch it but pretty everything else was still bad. I left a trail of scabs wherever I went...sorry, I know that is gross. lol. 

One day fate intervened and, what would turn into a daily ritual, forced me to get used to seeing my scar. Integra was in the process of being sold so things that were not needed a lot seemed to get overlooked when the orders were done. Apparently the medicated, vasoliney strips that were the first layer of my wound dressing just happened to be one of those items. While the nurses were scouring the place for the yellow strips, it was just me and my uncovered scar. Eventually I could look at it but touching it was another matter. As my release date approached, I knew I was going to have to get used to it and finally worked up the courage to touch the tip of it. Accepting it took even is still in process. I vowed that I was not going to spend my life trying hide it...that is kind of hard when you live in Texas and the summer are long and HOT. You get used to the stares and even the questions. One day while I was at a family get together, someone asked what happened. Tori (my adorable little cousin who told me jokes after my surgery), protectively told the little boy that I was in a bad wreck. It was so cute because she had this you don't ask people that look. Her tone said you definitely don't ask me that!  She is my little protector!  She and Nick worked really hard to have great jokes ready for me whenever they came to see me!  

As everything started to come together, plans for my release went into high gear. There was a handicap accessible apartment right across from my old place...same exact floor plan. Even though I had an assigned parking space and no car, there was a handicap spot right in front of my door. The army of friends moved my stuff so, when the big day came, all I had to do was head home. This starts what I call the Kip part of my rehab. 

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