Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Still Screwed

A year ago today I had a 6-inch steel plate screwed into my upper right arm. To mark the occasion, Miss Snark ran a "Bella Stander Get Humerus Poetry Contest," for which I remain ever grateful. She and the Snarklings were the high point of last summer--maybe even the entire year. (I saw her in NYC today and thanked her in person.) Read all about the contest--and see Xrays!--in my post Well & Truly Screwed.

The good news is that after two surgeries (I had another on Nov 1 to free the median nerve from scar tissue), I can use my right hand to do fun things like: scratch my nose, write, type, floss my teeth, turn a key, hold the dog's leash.

The bad news is that my fingers are partly numb and my grip is weak. I have to rummage around in my purse left-handed because I can't feel the difference between, say, a lipstick and a bottle of eyedrops. Also the sites of the original breaks at the humeral head (top of arm) and under the plate are still sore.

My D.O., who hasn't been wrong yet, says that the bone isn't set straight (clearly visible on the Xray, only I hadn't noticed) and the median nerve is being impinged by the plate. Which means that I may need to have the plate removed--but not till at least December, as the bone has to have grown back completely (if crookedly).

But first, I'm getting:
  • oral surgery (top front) & root canal (bottom front) next week.
  • S-curve in septum straightened, dent tapped out of nose & sinus reamed out in early October.
  • cap on top front tooth (provided it's OK after surgery) in mid-November

Oh yeah, and in between I'm giving Book Promotion 101 workshops in LA, NYC and DC. And... um...probably going for the occasional trail ride (wearing my super-duper new Charles Owen skull helmet--thanks, Billie!).

Am I:
a) optimistic
b) in denial
c) nuts
d) all of the above?

P.S. Gomez, the equine responsible for all this tsuris, has long since been sold--I hope to someone who stears clear of steel-pipe fencing.


Eric Riback said...

Gomez...has long since been sold.

To the glue farm, I hope.

Mr. Obie Joe said...

Oh, I vote for choice (a) -- you are a remarkable optimist. That's the choice for strength, and at the risk of evoking a hoary clinche --"If you fall off a horse..." err, never mind.

Good to hear you continue to be on the mend. We need you in D.C.!

billie said...

Oh, Bella, the list of more surgeries is sobering but with your determination and spirit I know you'll get through all of them.

I don't know what to say about the trail riding in between, except that horses are just magic, and once you experience that there is not really a way to give it up. I would bet the riding makes you heal faster, if anything. :)

Glad you got that Charles Owen!!

I thought of you yesterday - we went to meet a one-month old miniature donkey we are getting. The demeanors of the little guy and his mama were so incredibly peaceful and calming. Equine, in a way, but different b/c they are so small. We sat on the ground and he came up and gave kisses. You can take a peek at my blog. I couldn't resist!

I wish you would come further south with one of your workshops!!

Kim Stagliano said...


Wow. I can't imagine what you've been through. Simply astounding how a life can change in the blink of an eye. Last weekend a family member polished his motorcycle for the first time all summer, mounted for a ride on a sunny day before his daughter in laws birthday party and never came home. Lost control of the bike and died. Life can be short. Best grab it while you're able. I'm glad you're still able, Bella. I wish you all the best as you head into more surgeries.

Bella Stander said...

Thanks, all! I keep having to think about the upside to all this: painless front teeth, a straight nose through which I can easily breathe, smiling without embarrassment.

Chumplet said...

Good to hear you're back in the saddle.