The Operation

This carried its own risks: nerve damage, infection, failure. It was possible they’d need tendon from my wrist if the ligament was too damaged. I was afraid of the scars and would only know when I woke up after the op. 

Looking back I think I was still in a state of shock at that point. The operation seemed to go well and I woke up with my wrists intact feeling in reasonably good spirits.

I’d expected pain for the first week or two and took back to back painkillers and didn’t sleep much. I’d had my hand cut open, the ligament sewn and repaired and a metal wire put through my thumb joint to stop it moving. The metal stuck out through the skin on the side of my thumb and I couldn’t bear to look at it.

The period that followed was the darkest time of my life. I remember watching ‘Stranger Things’ and feeling like I was living in the ‘Upside down’ For those who haven’t watched it, this is another dimension and a dark, evil place where monsters live. I felt like I was living parallel but separately to everyone around me. I couldn’t sleep and was in pain most of the time. Later it transpired that this was due to infection in one of the stitches. It was the most overwhelming, loneliest time of my life. I remember
dreading being awake and grateful to sleep. 

For anyone who is experiencing anything like this my message would be ‘You are not alone’ There will be others, if not many of us, who at any time, are experiencing illness or injury or a life experience that separates us in some way from the day-to-day. ‘Hold tight’

The Accident

This is my hand last October. Crazy really. I’d fallen heavily onto my hand slipping on a wooden floor rushing through the hallway. The damage was immediately visible and my thumb and forefinger swollen and bruised beyond recognition. It was 2 weeks before I saw the consultant who broke the news to me. I remember hearing a loud crack when I fell – my thumb and forefinger had taken the full weight of my fall splayed apart. I learnt there was a high chance I’d snapped the ligament in my right thumb which was confirmed by an MRi scan. It was explained that this left my joint unsupported and without repair I wouldn’t be able to use my right hand. Also that, even with the operation, I’d never regain effective use of my right hand. It’s actually painful to write that. I try not to think about it and focus on the positive thought of my work now. The accident changed the way I saw the world and I found a strength I didn’t know I had. If it hadn’t been for my accident I don’t think I’d have had the conviction to pursue my idea.