Get It? Barbecue? As in, barbecued ribs? Because my ribs are injured? Okay, maybe I was reaching on that one but i know some people that would have found that incredibly hilarious. But I digress… Since it’s been about three weeks since it happened, I figured it would be time to provide a cursory update on how my injuries are faring. For those who may not have read the previous posts, I took a straight punch to the left ribs during a weekend karate seminar, which led me to believe I had a fracture. It’s been a brutal few weeks. Here’s the breakdown…
The injury happened on the Sunday and on the Monday morning following the incident, I had to “turtle” my way out of bed. That means I had to rock myself back and forth so that I could essentially roll off the bed. I had no strength or balance on the left side of my body and every movement, breath and step i took shot pain throughout my entire body. Good times. I was lucky enough to be working from home that day, so I was able to at least work in the comfort of my home.
The following day, after recognizing that it was a passing ache that would subside over a day or two, I contacted the dojo and let them know I would be out of commission until I could have the injury assessed and figure out exactly what was happening. This left me with a bit of a conundrum. I don’t have a family doctor, so I had the choice of either trying to go to the emergency room and waiting for an entire day to have some over-exhausted and under-staffed doctor tell me it was a pulled muscle and to take ibuprofen or try and get the services I needed through a walk-in, which would be less of a wait but the unfamiliarity of the doctor combined with the lack of laboratory and x-ray services on site would be an issue. This wasn’t the kind of thing I wanted to prolong over days.
My wife had the idea of giving me a scheduled appoint she had made for herself on the Friday. It was with a doctor who normally sees our son Nathan, so there was some familiarity. I saw him on God Friday and the clinic actually had an x-ray attached, so I would be in good shape. However, the x-ray clinic wasn’t staffed on a statutory holiday. I had to return the following morning but I was given the time of day and actually got the x-ray as well as some prescription-grade anti-inflammatory pills and muscle relaxants.
After an extensive wait, I was able to check the results of the x-rays online where the doctor determined that there was no fracture or break of the ribs. Okay, great. This likely meant it was damage to the muscle wall over the ribs, but I’m not a doctor. I had no idea how to expedite healing this injury. I did what anyone in my position would do; I went online. Most sources seemed to recommend the same thing: rest and applying heat and/or cold to the affected area. There are a few problems with this.
Health and fitness is a kept skill. One can’t simply say, “Oh, great! I’ve reached my ideal weight or fitness goal. Now, I can let myself go and relax…” Even once you reach your goals, it’s important to continue working at it or else you risk losing muscle mass, gaining weight and having your overall health go off the rails. As it’s been a few weeks of taking it easy and resting up, my muscles have started becoming weaker and I’ve lost some mass. The only silver lining is that my blood sugars have remained basically unaffected.
I stopped taking the anti-inflammatory pils I was prescribed when I discovered they were causing heavy nose bleeds. I won’t get into the details of the hows and whys, but the photo above shows how I got a pretty nasty nose bleed during my lunch hour, at work. I was just fortunate enough that none of the blood landed on the tie. You can tell that some of the blood lightly toughed the fringe of the suit jacket, but I was able to brush it clean. Overall, it’s been a pain in the ass… Or a pain in the ribs, I suppose.
It’s slow-going and a work in progress. I can get in and out of bed and in and out of chairs without crying like a little bitch, which is a plus. I’m getting SOME sleep, despite needing to frequently move from the bed to the lounger back and forth due to the discomfort. I know there are worse injuries out there and I could be dealing with much worse. That doesn’t lessen or take away from what I’m currently dealing with. I just can’t wait to get out there and start getting back into karate and get my bicycle out. There’ll be some rebuilding to do, once everything has healed up. ☯️