Friday, April 24, 2015


While April 13th did not fall on a Friday this year, it sure felt like it did in my world.

David and I were headed out around noon on that Monday, the 13th, for an overnight trip to Georgetown, north of Austin. Our anniversary was the week before and we had been so busy preparing our new Wildflower Art Gallery in Wimberley for a ribbon cutting with the Chamber of Commerce there and for our "grand opening" weekend that we didn't get to do much more than say "Happy Anniversary" to each other.

I had several new paintings ready to deliver to a new gallery rep in Georgetown, Artisans Connect. We decided to drop off our dog at my sister's house then take advantage of a 2-day business trip/getaway to deliver the art, find a nice little B-n-B for the night and get in some site seeing around the area. We both tackled a good deal of items on our to-do list Monday morning, clearing our calendar and conscience to take a couple of days "off."

But then the accident happened.

Charging down the stairs, which were wet from the overnight rains and made more treacherous from the pollen that was washed from the overhanging branches, I was on the last or next to the last step when my right foot flew out from under me and I went splat on my butt. In the process, I hurt my right leg and, needless to say, knocked the wind out of my sails. So much for the trip. David was able to help me up and get me to the car and we headed to town. There was no way I could get back up the stairs so the only option was for him to take me to my sister's house in New Braunfels where there are only a couple of steps, no stairs.

We iced and elevated for the evening then made an appointment with my doctor the next day so I could get it X-rayed. With the first read, they told us that nothing was broken and to just continue to ice-n-elevate and take pain meds. Found a "tiny" bit of arthritis but otherwise looked OK. Luckily we had friends and friends of friends to borrow a wheelchair and walkers to get around some, but I was in lots of pain for the first few days and could barely get up and down and when I did had to have lots of help. Was feeling a little better day by day and then a call from the Doctor's office came on Friday afternoon.

They had sent the X-rays out for reading and it came back that I did, indeed have a "small fracture" in right tibial plateau and some compression. (Basically, at the top of the shin bone near the knee joint. I'm sure folks who know more about the anatomy could explain it better). The doctor  immediately put me in an immobilizer, told me to keep the weight off the leg at all times and to see an orthopedic surgeon the following week.

Unless you know what you are looking at, this may not look that bad.
Progress was good over the weekend and the pain wasn't nearly as intense. Monday morning we called the orthopedic surgeon's office and David took the X-ray disk to them.  Within a half hour they called they he wanted to see me on Thursday.

Since we still needed to get the new paintings to Georgetown and rather than just send David on his own, I decided to ride up with him. After all, all I had to do was sit and look out the window, right? We had a great day, accomplished the mission, had a nice lunch in Georgetown, enjoyed the wildflowers along the roadsides and was back home by late afternoon.

But the trip took its toll and I was pretty much wiped out the next day. We had put off talking about or making any decisions regarding the Downtown New Braunfels Art Walk set for April 25-26. Of course I had planned to have my studio all cleaned up and open for the event. After the exhausting trip on Monday, we made the difficult decision to not participate this year. I had to accept the reality that it was just not in the best interest of my health and continued healing to push myself that way. Even with help, it would be too risky.

We made it to the appointment on Thursday and the doctor confirmed that I did indeed have a fracture, but more significant than what we were told the previous week. Also, the arthritis was much more severe, so much so that he felt that surgery at this time would not be a good idea since there was already damage that might, down the line, require knee replacement.

I've been instructed to continue doing what I'm doing: keep the immobilizer on and keep weight off the right leg so it can heal on its on for the next 5 weeks. Yes, 5 weeks! Then I return for another appointment and another X-ray to see if I can start on the next phase, rebuilding the muscle and getting my strength back. And, of course, no driving until it's safe.

Needless to say, this messes up any plans I had for the next few months for teaching, painting and just living life as I normally do. Hopefully by mid-summer I'll be getting "back to normal."

In the meantime, life goes on. David is still opening the Wimberley gallery on weekends and during the week as he can. The summer camp schedule for our studio in New Braunfels is complete and posted, but there will be some switching around on instructors as soon as I get it lined up. But the camps will remain in place as listed on the website and we are already getting enrollments. Thankfully I have my trusty laptop computer and can do business somewhat as normal as long as I pace it, as my sweet David keeps reminding me. Maybe now I'll find time now to clean out my overloaded in-boxes!

Thanks for reading and thanks for your interest!