Wednesday, May 17, 2017

What It Takes To Be Betsy by Betsy Ashton

Most of you who know me or who have been following me know I'm independent and stubborn. That's a double understatement. So, three weeks ago on April 25th when I fell and broke my wrist, I knew I was going to need a lot of help. My dear husband stepped up to taking care of me along with all of his own tasks. He had no idea what being me entailed.

I broke the right radius, the bone that allows the wrist to turn. I had surgery one week later. 

Now, I'm profoundly right-handed, so I knew teaching my useless left hand to do anything would be a long and winding road. It was and is. 

Let's start with what I'm doing now: writing a blog entry. I'm typing with my left hand, backing up constantly to fix typos, and trying to keep my thoughts clear. Yes, my brain struggles to fend off the anesthesia muzzies. I figured out how to hunt and peck the letters. Then there was a contraption called THE MOUSE. I didn't reset the buttons, because it wouldn't have done a darned bit of good. I'm getting better at mousing. I'm so proud of me. I'm feeling cocky enough to trying to cut and paste, but not until I feel like being bought to my knees in frustration.

Cooking is out of the question. I have a freezer full of homemade soups and stews. We laid in a stack of Lean Cuisine and plenty of fresh veggies for salads and for roasting on the grill. Terry is good in the kitchen. Normally, I cook and he cleans up. Now, he's doing it all. I'm so lucky. Eating itself can be a challenge. As one of my friends said years ago about his toddler: "it's not pretty, but it's effective." Only twice since the break have I wished for a bib. At least, clothes and hands wash. Speaking of laundry, I've never been good at folding fitted sheets, but at least I have an excuse. Wonder how long I can milk this for sympathy.

Personal hygiene has been easier than I thought. A baggie over the mallet bandage first and the brace now, rubber bands to keep the water out, and an elbow to help with shampoo bottles work to keep me clean. Pedicures take care of toes and feet. Forget makeup. I'm out and about in native skin. And bless the people who developed battery-operated toothbrushes; they are my heroes.

To the people who have come to my aid--the nice young lady who helped me put groceries in the car, the barista who put lids on my coffee so I don't pour slop hot liquids all over, and the sweet young girl who carried two lattes to the car--I appreciate your kindness and am in your debt. 

To Joesephine at the Westlake Library, the "scene of the crime," who fetched ice, called Terry, and took me to get emergency treatment, you're my hero for springing into action and not getting sick when you saw how out of alignment the wrist was. I promise to share your kindness forward, right after you rename the building "The Betsy Ashton Library at Westlake."

Two weeks after surgery, I'm in a brace like the kind we wear for carpal tunnel and start physical therapy next week. Keep an eye on Facebook for updates. And if you see Terry looking harried, give him a smile and a hug. He's my super hero.


Diane Burton said...

Wow, Betsy. I'm amazed that you even attempted to write your post. Good job, btw. You are so lucky to have a husband who takes such good care of you. Kudos to him. I hope you'll get full use out of your wrist as soon as possible.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Love the picture! Go you. Sorry for your misfortune, but I sure enjoyed reading your post. Such inspiration there! Take care, heal quickly, a milk this sucker for all you can get. ;-)

Rolynn Anderson said...

Love your upbeat attitude, Betsy. I've fallen twice in my whole life; after the second time, I learned that I 'fell incorrectly.' Turns out we all have to go to the gym (with soft mats) and practice how to fall-a kind of tuck and roll, so we land on our 'soft parts,' avoiding head and hand/arm injuries. Have I practiced? No. Has anyone out there? If so, did it make a difference? Betsy and I want to know!

Vonnie Davis ~ Romance Author said...

I don't even want to imagine what you have and are going through. Broken bones are no fun. As Rolynn so often says, "We mush on." And it's not always pretty. Heal quickly.

Jannine Gallant said...

It's pathetic how inept we all are with our left hands. Geez, maybe we should practice...just in case. Wishing you fast heeling!

Andrea Downing said...

Well, you may recall I fell and broke my shoulder last year so I am with you all the way and know exactly what you're gong through. Sleeping with my arm in a sling was NOT fun-a dead weight on my stomach. And typing...feel better soon and do everything the physical therapist tells you!

Leah St. James said...

So glad you're making progress, Betsy! I fell and broke my elbow about 20 years ago, and having my arm in a sling was a real inconvenience, but I had the use of my hands so was lucky. Kudos to your hubby for stepping up, and to all the others who lent a hand (hahahahaha...sorry, couldn't help myself). Kudos most of all to you for not letting it stop you. :-)

Alicia Dean said...

Wow, Betsy. I am so sorry you're going through this. I admire your outlook, though. Sounds like you're powering through. Hope you heal quickly! I can't imagine trying to manage under those circumstances. I'm sure I would have skipped the blog post. :D