Anxiety - A New Addition to my Recovery

Hello week 5 and what an unexpected surprise you brought with you. I have been to my doctor twice since the accident. The first time was 3 days after the accident and honestly I could barely sit up and remember very little. The second visit, a week later, he removed my soft cast and bandages and replaced it with my brace. I was very nervous on that visit when the bandages were taken off, actually sweating and shaking. I knew it was fear of my leg being unprotected and fear of that unbelievable pain coming back. I could barely lay still from all the shaking I was doing while the brace was being put on. The doctor said I could take the brace off to shower but then it needed to go back on for protection. Out of complete and total fear, I did not take the brace off. I just cleaned each section one at a time all month. I realize now I had no idea the fear and anxiety building inside me.

Last week, five weeks post injury, was my third visit. I noticed as soon as I got in the exam room I started to sweat. I felt silly but could not get it to stop. I was taken across the hall to x-ray where my brace needed to be removed. The brace was removed and my anxiety shot up. I needed to get into a couple of positions for the x-rays, one a particularly uncomfortable position. After coming out of the position, I needed to go right back into it as the image was not clear. We put my brace back on and I went back to the exam room.

When I got back to the room my anxiety was even higher as was the sweating more excessive. I could not get "fixed" when I tried to sit down. My doctor came in and showed me all the x-rays and gave me NOTHING but good news. He then took the brace off and told me I could try to bend and straighten my knee. It was then I literally froze with absolute terror. I looked down and saw my leg. It was misshapen and atrophied and covered in dried skin and I started to feel sick. I tried to get it to move, even a little bit but nothing. The doctor began explaining in great detail about how I needed to try to bend, to try to straighten, to try to start putting the broken leg down but only put 5-10# of weight on it. What? How on earth do I know what 5-10# feels like?? I was beyond overwhelmed and it felt like my head was spinning.

I became more and more overwhelmed and I noticed my hands were ringing wet as were my legs and sticking to the paper on the table. I started to feel almost dizzy on top of the nausea I was already feeling. It felt like I had been sitting there an eternity when we finally put my brace back on. It was at this point he wanted me to stand and practice putting my foot down. My head felt like it was completely in a cloud and I could not grasp how to put one foot down as he was very patiently explaining to me. The visit was over shortly after this and I apologized for the dripping hands as I shook his hand as he was leaving. He was very kind and laughed and said "at least you don't have stinky feet!"

I sat for a minute as I needed just a second to rest. I then started down the hall and made it about one door when it hit me. I could no longer see and my ears were ringing like crazy. I said I need to sit down and was grabbed  a chair and waited for the doctor. He again was very kind and said this was very common with orthopedic issues and brought me some orange juice. Another doctor came out as well and started taking my pulse. I felt beyond silly and embarrassed and had to be wheeled out to the car, which was another disappointment as I pride myself on being able to walk in and walk out, which I have been able to do since the 2nd visit.

When I got outside and the cool air hit me I realized I had just experienced a full blown panic attack. That was something new for me. Honestly I just felt exhausted and leveled the rest of the day. I now know the fear overtook me and I am trying daily to touch my knee and leg and remind myself I am ok and I am getting better to try to overcome the fear I know is there. I am glad there is 4 weeks until my next appointment so I have some time to work on overcoming this fear and working through this anxious energy I have. The last thing I want is that to happen again! Ive been spending extra time in gratitude and have all my crystals and oil going around me (my juju.) For anyone that suffers from anxiety on a regular basis, my heart goes out to you. Sincerely.

Here is to week 6 and growing my mind as my body rests!

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