Submitted story by Lou
Monday was a really good day, right up until the moment when I tore both quadriceps tendons and ended up in the hospital, where I’ve been ever since. This is my best guess about what happened:
As I was walking downstairs, my left quad tendon spontaneously ruptured. I went airborne and landed on my right knee on the tile floor, obliterating the right quad tendon (among other things). My first thought, as I lay there on the floor, was that I’d broken both legs.
Then I looked at the divots in my legs where my quads used to be, and realized the bones were probably intact but I’d clearly torn the tendons. We’d just finished a Memorial Day barbecue with Kimberly’s family, which meant we had a lot of people to help get me to the emergency room. They lifted me onto a plastic folding table and then loaded me into the back of the SUV for the 5-minute drive to the hospital. The whole thing would’ve been entertaining if not for the catastrophic bilateral injuries.
For example, when the emergency room staff was trying to get me out of the SUV, I helped them by grabbing the back seat handles and lifting my upper body. One of them tried to get me to stop, but I told her it’s okay because I’ve been training for this moment my entire life. I liked that line so much, I’ve used it at least once a day since then.
I’m almost embarrassed to admit how many other lines I’ve recycled for each new set of nurses, therapists, and other aides. And when you’re in bed with both surgically repaired knees completely immobilized, you get a lot of opportunities to work on your material.
Which brings me to my first breakthrough moment: standing upright — which is an incredible challenge when you can’t bend your knees at all — and supporting most of my body weight on my feet. It was the first time in the ordeal that I couldn’t think of anything funny to say. I was so surprised I apologized to the therapists for not coming up with a joke. I also noted that I’d managed to pull it off without swearing once — a rare moment of self-control that ended less than a minute later.
I’ve got a lot of joking and swearing ahead of me — two weeks before I can bend my knees even a little bit, and at least two months before I’ll have anything close to full range of motion. As tough as it’s going to be for me, it’s also going to be brutal for Kimberly, whose life will revolve around my needs more than her own for the foreseeable future. Thank goodness she didn’t marry me for my sexy knees.