I banged up my knee at gymnastics on Monday and had to get crutches to walk!
Around eight pm on my Monday night closing shift at the store, I was greeted by Danielle and a limping Emelia. Danielle said to me, “I take it you didn’t see my text message?” She was, right, I hadn’t. Turns out, Emelia had a fall off the balance beam while working on her competition routine at gymnastics and her knee managed to find the seam in the mats that led to the carpet-clad cement gym floor. Immediately her knee swelled and it looked like she had golf ball under her skin. They iced it immediately which helped to take the swelling down but, by the time I saw them at the store, her leg was sore, stiff and she was hardly able to put weight on it. And her eyes once seeing me, were filled with tears. It was hard seeing her that way and having little I could do except encourage her to get home, elevate her leg and get ice on it.
By Tuesday, the stiffness was worse and she was hobbling more. By midday, Danielle let me know she was going to take her to the Urgent Care clinic at St. Joe’s (thankfully we have a hospital in our ‘hood) to make sure there wasn’t anything more serious going on. By the time I got home at seven, Emelia was home with a set of crutches. The diagnosis was deep tissue damage and that they wanted her on crutches. As a follow-up they were referring her to the Fowler Kennedy Sports Clinic to ensure the diagnosis was correct and to follow up with physiotherapy. The clinic is world renowned and the same very one I had my knee completely reconstructed through about fourteen years ago.
The referral to Fowler Kennedy came up in a hurry and Danielle had to make arrangements Wednesday afternoon to close the daycare so that she could take Emelia to the appointment as I was working the close shift at the store and know that their appointments run late and long (which ended up being the case). With the daycare parents being so understanding, we were able to make the appointment work out so that Emelia was able to make into acute injury clinic within the timeframe from injury.
The prognosis from Fowler Kennedy supported the one made at the hospital. The only difference was that they wanted Emelia to immediately try to get down to one crutch, and then off them altogether as soon as possible (as I anticipated) because the longer she was on them, the slower the recovery and the more chance of damage or stress to her joint and ankle from compensating for the knee. While she was a little tender from the poking and prodding, by that evening she was down to one crutch. By the time I picked her up from school on Thursday, she handed me her crutches and walked home without them. From that point forward they’ve been collecting dust and she says she’s feeling much better. And by Friday night she made it back to gymnastics to do a lighter version of her normal workout.
With the crutches out of the way and her healing, that left Emelia and I still on for our date on Saturday to finally do some Christmas shopping for Mummy. She’s done a wonderful job of collecting ideas this year and is really focused on finding some special things and didn’t want to milk the Pandora bracelet charm cow any more this year! Being very much like her mother she was very focused that we hadn’t bought a single thing and with two weeks to Christmas this was unacceptable. With me off work and Danielle other errands to run, Saturday was the perfect day to have our shopping date. And Emelia was finally happy that there was a plan in place.
We were able to make it through our list pretty efficiently and without doing too much damage to our wallets. Emelia was delighted with all that we found and I was delighted in watching and listening to her thought process. As well as to see and hear all the listening she has been doing to Mummy when she and her are out shopping on days that I have to work. She’s a pretty astute little girl and doesn’t miss much when it comes to her Mummy. And the decision-making behind the stuff we got was so caring and considerate to a Mummy who does special things for herself absolute last—if at all! I am quite delighted with what she found and can’t wait till Danielle gets to open her presents.
Today while I worked, the snow we hadn’t gotten yet this winter finally showed up in a dumping that made the drive home a little bit interesting. I came home to a chunky potato and cheddar bacon soup that Danielle had made and now am sitting while the snow still falls outside with the Ray Charles The Spirt of Christmas record plays on the stereo while I reflect on a week that started with downs and ended with ups. I can’t think of a better way to close out a week.
One thing as a parent I should have figured out by this point in the game. Never say ‘hey we don’t have a lot going on this week I will be able to get a lot done and we can have some downtime before Christmas‘. It is like sayin’ hey I have my shit together let’s test that theory. Anyway this past week should have been a relatively quietish week. I say quietish because we still both work full time, I had a new daycare baby starting this week, Emelia has her activities, we have homework and extra work for Emelia in school to help her in some areas. But we didn’t have more shopping to do, we didn’t have wrapping to do, we didn’t really have any Christmas things to do other than get a start on Christmas cards and figure out what to get her teacher and coaches.
Well, that was all to change Monday night, normally Monday’s I bring Emelia to gymnastics and then go to the gym to get a workout in. This week I opted to pass on that to take things a bit easier, and thankfully I did. About 45 minutes into her training Emelia has practiced her competition routine a few times on the beam. I had watch her a couple times through and then sat down with the other parents. A few minutes later Emelia comes over saying I need to go to the bathroom and I fell and bumped my knee.
She went off to the bathroom and by the time she came back she said I really hurt my knee and she was limping badly. I sat her down and looked at her knee, within second the whole side of her knee cap looked like an oversized golfball had been planted right under her skin. I called one of the moms over who happens to be a nurse and she checked Emelia over. We got her coach (who she failed to mention she fell and who didn’t see Emelia fall) and we checked her over. We iced the knee and elevated and said we were done training for the night. Emelia insisted she wanted to stay so we continued to ice her knee and she helped co-coach her friends. We left the gym telling her coach that likely with some ice, elevation and some Advil she would be ok. We went off to the mall so Emelia could say good-night to her daddy and she could tell him what happened.
By the we got to the mall the pain had really kicked in and she was barely able to put weight on her leg. We said our good-nights and off to home and bed we went. I got her re-iced, something for the swelling and the pain and she fell asleep pretty quickly. The next morning she woke and I full expected to see a black and blue knee, but nope it was barely bruised and really swollen, to the point her knee cap was swollen around. I gave her the option to stay home but she wanted to go to school. I walked her to school and told her teacher and gym teacher what happened. They agreed to keep her in for recess and out of gym for the day.
By the time Emelia got home that night I had decided if things hadn’t improved I would take her to urgent care to get checked. Well, things didn’t get better – she still could not bare weight on the knee, the bruising still hadn’t come up and it was still swollen on the side of the knee. Once all the daycare kids left she and I were off to Urgent Care at St. Joe’s around the corner from the house. Thankfully it was nearing the close of the clinic and it was pretty well dead in there so we got right away, they quickly got us down to x-ray and back to be seen by a doctor. Thankfully there was nothing broken but she did have a deep bone bruise and soft tissue damage. The doctor wanted her on crutches and for us to be sent to the Fowler Kennedy Clinic (Sports injuries). We were told to keep her on the crutches until she was assessed by the clinic.
The next morning we were called by Fowler and they wanted her in to the acute injury clinic, this clinic is very time sensitive and must be set within 48 hours of a sports injury. So that meant at 8:30 in the morning I found out we had a 1:45 appointment. So with no time to spare I had to do something I have never had to do, close my daycare with absolutely no notice. I have the most amazing daycare families and not one of them made a fuss said Emelia came first and they would figure things out. By 12:30 the kids were all gone, I had Emelia picked up from school and we were off to the clinic.
I cannot say enough amazing things about this clinic, the staff was wonderful, they were through and we were assessed by two doctors and two physiotherapist. She was given some home exercises to do until she was to go for physio at a later date but the big instructions we were given was to get her eased as fast as possible on to one crutch, she struggled at first with this, she was in a lot of tears once we left physio because she was in pain from the assessment. Once she and I chatted and I gave her some time to recover from the pain of the appointment she moved to one crutch. By the end of the day she was taking smaller steps without the crutches and we were starting to finally see some improvement. During all this time I was communicating with her coaches at gymnastics to let them know we wouldn’t be having her train this week.
By Thursday morning she was moving a bit better in the morning, she went to school with the crutches, I spoke to her teacher that she was to move to one crutch but both were sent if she needed them for outside. By the end of the day she was walking home without any crutches at all and only a small limp. We had been keeping up with the elevating, ice and advil – this along with her physio exercises really helped a lot. Friday morning she was free of the crutches and by the time she got home we decided that we would attempt gymnastics training although mortified. We went to gymnastics, she was sore and had to ice and take breaks but I would say she was at about 80% by Friday night.
All in all she was a trooper through it all, she honestly barely complained about any of the pain and took everything in stride. As we sit here on Sunday I would say she is about 95% back to normal, a bit of tightness but she is eager to get back to her full gymnastics training tomorrow and is happy to be back to her usual athletic self. The rest of the week was a blur it seemed. We are almost wrapped up for Christmas and other than Christmas cards we are almost ready for the big day that is just 2 weeks away.