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12 weeks, 3 days

It's hard to believe that if I would have had to keep the Halo on for the full duration I would only have been free 3 days.

I also can hardly fathom that its only been 3 weeks since the damn thing came off.

I went in for xrays on the 4th and had my final doctor appointment. While I was waiting for the xrays to come back a girl walked in with a Halo on. She appeared to have no other injuries and was walking on her own and seemed almost comfortable looking but she made no eye contact with anyone but her family. I wanted to speak to her and see how she was doing, but was too shy to approach her and her large family.

My recovery from the accident is ongoing. Now that the Halo is off I just want to feel normal again! Other parts of my body are taking there sweet time. I still have neck soarness and can't sleep normally. I've tried sleeping on my stomach, but the bend in my lower back is too much to bear. I can sleep on my sides, but stupidly got my tattoo touched up last Sunday…
Recent posts

weight loss and gain

Before the accident I was a comfortable 145 - not too thin, not too plump. The ten days in the hospital left me ten pounds lighter.

I had a tiny appetite and the food that was served was ever rarely what I ordered. I would consider myself a picky eater, but on the healthy side. Chicken dripping in gravy makes me think of clogged arteries, steak and potatoes is a heart attack - and the taste is dry and chewy. All I wanted was juicy fruit and vegetables. I ate up all the greens I could they hadn't wilted before they arrived to me. A friend brought me raspberries and I was in heaven!

But eating with the halo was not easy... or pretty to watch. With the halo on I could not tilt my head to accommodate a large bite and would often leave most of the fork contents down my front. Sometimes they went down the inside of the vest! Lots of cookie crumbs ended up there... Eating something with my hands took a little getting used to as well. I had a broken right wrist in a brace for the first tw…

the bike

Here's what the bike looked like after the accident.





Here's where the bike ended up.








Here's how I left the scene.





This is me before the accident.






Everything hurts

It's been a week and one day since the halo came off and everything hurts. My body feels as though it has the flu. Achy all over.

My head/scalp hurts. It feels as though I've been wearing a hat or ponytail too long. My head hadn't touched a pillow in ten weeks and now it has become very sensitive. My hair style hasn't changed much so I can't blame the hair for the cause of the pain. I can only think its the pressure of lying on my head again when sleeping.

My upper spine hurts when I lean back onto a hard chair. I think because its been protected by the vest and now its touching surfaces for the first time in awhile. My upper back muscles feel stiff as well as my lungs/ribs are soar. I'm moving about more and I think that movement is straining my body. I guess I haven't moved much in ten weeks!

My neck is soar as well, but that was expected... this all over body pain is draining.

I wish my pain meds worked better but still allowed me to be functional. The s…

Day 3

This dang collar is gettin' old.

It's placed loosely around my neck so I can turn my head, but still placed as a reminder I need to take it easy. To think I will wear this for another week and a half is almost unbearable...and then I turn my head and pain strikes. I feel muscles I never knew existed flex and bend.

Lifting my head up and nodding down are done with the most ease. Turning right is easier than turning left. I wonder if this is because my neck was always causing me most pain on the left side? Those muscles were used during the nine weeks...hhhmmm. When I take the collar off I feel exposed and very nervous.

Now that the vest is also gone, I put a bra on for the first time in nine weeks. Felt a little uncomfortable, but then again -- it's a bra.

I also took a shower.

To feel the hot water run over my head and down my body was incredible. I wanted to stand there forever. To wash my hair and feel clean all over was exhilarating. I almost forgot about my broken leg…

The removal

The removal took less than 10 minutes and was a little painful. Not anesthesia was given, just a tight grip on the table was all they thought I needed I guess.

The orthotist assisted my neurosurgeon as they removed the hardware. The sound of the screwdrivers unscrewing the pins echoed through my head. The only real pain came when I felt a pressure against the front of my head when they had finished with the back pins.  The pin area itself never hurt. Actually as soon as the halo was removed my back left pin area felt relieved. I was then fitted with a plastic and foam neck collar that fits under my chin and comfortably around my neck. 

But, OH! how wonderful and weird and scary it was all at the same moment. I had fear and elation in my eyes at the same time. My head felt heavy, as if it was going to roll off.  I was terrified to turn my neck. It felt stiff and awkward.

I asked my doctor a zillion more questions about the safety and next steps. He was so casual and assured. I could …

WOW!

It's off! ...and this is how I slept. With a pillow against my head and my husband next to me I slept peacefully for the first time in weeks.