Houston, We Have A Problem!

Sunday, February 9, 2012

Remember this photo because Jil won’t be using her pickleball paddle for a while:

Back on January 30th Jil and three gal friends decided that they were going to put in some afternoon practice for the Palm Creek Pickleball tournament to be held the first week of February. All went well until Jil decided to chase a ball that probably wasn’t returnable. The result is pictured below:

Yep, she broke the radius bone right off of the wrist. A lady was kind enough to transport her back to our RV in her golf car. I saw her sitting in the car as it approached and the light bulb didn’t come on- until I saw her supporting a very deformed looking wrist.

She told me what happened. Of course ya just don’t break your wrist on a fall like that- she hurt her hip, her side, her shoulder as well as hitting her head on that fall. We decided to go to Banner Urgent Care located less than a mile from the park. We were there maybe an hour. X-rays were taken and Jil’s wrist was placed in a splint, her arm in a sling. We were told to contact the Orthopedic docs at the Banner Hospital complex in the morning.

Pickleball Injuries are similar to all active sport injuries. Even tennis pro Raphael Nadal can take a spill now and then.

Morning comes, the call was made- the Docs had access to the images of her wrist taken the evening before. Nope, we can’t fix it says the Ortho Doc. What? Understand that this group of Ortho Docs are the only game in town. Well, who then? Call Doc Myo in Chandler. He specializes in hands, wrists, etc.

We called Doc Myo’s office on Friday. Can’t see you until Monday, dear! Is your hand in a splint? Yes…… Do you have a sling? Yes……. OK, see you Monday! Sheesh! What about pain control? Orthopedic Docs usually say “It’s gonna hurt- suck it up Buttercup”. No pain control prescribed by any of the three Docs consulted.

OK, Jil is in a lot of pain. The urgent care Doc didn’t want to give her pain pills but would prescribe high strength Motrin. She has Motrin so why purchase more? Motrin helps calm the pain but it doesn’t help enough. Aha! Call a friend! Friend has had her share of injuries, maybe she has a few extra pain pills laying around. She has a few- but there are for her German Shorthair Pointer. We’ll take ‘um! Same med as for humans……. I make the round trip in short order and Jil has pain meds enough to last until her Monday doctor’s appointment. She has taken a couple of pills now- and no, she didn’t start barking……….nice try though……..

Monday’s appointment was in Chandler, a distance of 35 miles. Half of that is on I-10, the rest on rural country roads until we come into town. Then maybe eight miles through nice neighborhoods on a nice wide road. Once in the office we fill out 9, count ‘um, nine pages of paperwork. Jil’s writing hand is in a sling- guess who gets to fill out all those forms?

The bottom line from Doc Myo- you can elect not to have surgery but the function of the wrist will never be normal and it will deformed forever OR elect to have surgery, no more deformation and regain 90-95% of the function of the wrist. What do you want to do? Duhhh- lemmi think……… Surgery is scheduled for the next afternoon at the Gilbert SurgCenter just 4 miles from Doc Myo’s office. AND, he prescribed her pain meds.

When one travels with dogs a lot of concessions are made as to where, what and when we can visit and air temperature must be considered. We tried leaving Megan, our neurotic Lab with Jim and Connie on Monday with limited results, electing to bring our rambunctious Boxer put with us. She was not a happy camper nor were the Gales. Even so Jim was kind in offering help in the future if needed but we didn’t want to put him or Megan through another stressful day.

Tuesday we head to Gilbert taking both dogs. The weather is in the 50’s, there’s a park nearby where we can get some exercise while Jil undergoes surgery. Everything worked out as planned. The dogs got some exercise, the car never got too warm and I was able split my time with them and spending time with Jil in the recovery room.

The outcome- Jil’s surgery went well. We were back home at the RV five hours after we left. Jil is comfortable because she received a nerve block that numbed her entire right arm. Numbing the arm sounds great when intense pain is involved but that too has it’s hazards. If ya can’t feel it ya don’t know where it is! Her arm flopped out of bed and scrared her to death because she didn’t know what it was!

She is now in her fifth day of recovery. Her wrist is in a splint and wrapped heavily with an elastic bandage. The only things peaking out are her finger tips. She’s taken her arm out of the sling quite a few times in order to exercise her shoulder and elbow. She’s wiggling her fingers and thumb to keep the swelling down. She’s even taken doggie walks several times each day. Relearning how to open jars, remove bottle caps and just basic things one normally does (like dye one’s hair) with two hands is coming along. The good thing is she is managing the pain with only occasional doses of Motrin/pain killers.

If you know Jil she’s always doing too much too soon when in recovery and pays the price. Right now she’s spending more healing time relaxing and sleeping. Yay! And then she puts in 10,000 steps the next. Phooey. She mentioned to me when she starts to feel the least bit sorry for herself she recalls the ad on TV that shows our soldiers with missing limbs- blown off by IED’s in Iraq, all with positive attitudes-and she experiences an instant attitude adjustment. That ad should sober anyone……

By the way her wrist, her side, shoulder and head were not the only casualty. As has happened in the past when she receives anesthesia one of her crowns came off- never to be found again. We really don’t understand the dynamics of losing a crown because she was sent to LaLa Land, do you? So Monday we have an appointment with a dentist. Sigh…………….at 0700 hours…….. it’s still dark at 0700 hours here in Arid-zona………

COWBOY WISDOM: Life is simpler when you plow around the stump.

6 thoughts on “Houston, We Have A Problem!”

    1. Hi Linda
      Thanks for your concern. Jil is doing well. Still has some pain but she is good at handling it. That said she’s unhappy that she is limited in what she can do. I think she is doing great considering she can only use her off hand. Don’t feel sorry for me- our relationship is built on trust and love. As frustrating as that can be at times there is nothing that I’d rather do than help My Sweetie in her time of need!


  1. glad shes good.yourstory is hillarious.quite the bull in that boy.overallsoundslike things areokay except the stress on the doggies.best luck n get well sis


  2. Hi Jil,
    We area so sorry that you fell and still are “in something of a pickle dealing with the consequences.” Now we know the real reason it is called pickleball! In some respects you were lucky to be relatively close to a surgeon who could do the surgery. We wish the best for you during your recovery!🤣


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