Dirty Pop

Ariana, Third Year Medical Student

“Pop!” “NoooOooooOo!”

Those are 2 of the sounds you never ever want to hear come out of your body.

Of course THAT guy tore his ACL, his BMI is 35. And yeah, she’s on her 3rd marathon,  an injury was bound to happen. But me? I’m (or at least trying to be) a healthy young woman that exercises regularly and eats lots of fruits and veggies. It won’t happen to me. I’ve never had an injury before even though I love doing adrenaline-rushing things. Invincibility must be running through my veins.

But of course it happened to me…New Years Day, I got a group of friends to play a fun game of flag football. If you know me, I LOVE playing flag football, in the sand, in the grass, on the turf, it doesn’t matter. But 2 hours later…”pop!”

There I was, imagining myself in a wheelchair or crutches trying to get vitals on a patient in time for rounds. How would I survive rotations as a cripple? Thankfully I appeared to only have had a knee sprain and just had to “conservatively” manage it. This includes RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation), and gradually increasing the mobility of my knee through stretching and low impact exercise AKA swimming.

Fast forward 3 weeks and I am still slightly limping with a knee sleeve, but it could be far worse. I had a small glimpse into what life could be like without a functional limb and boy is it scary. I can almost imagine the agony a star athlete feels when his/her knee gives out and the only thing they’ve known for their entire lives, their masterfully sculpted body, is snatched from them. Sadly for them, a few million $$$ goes as their knees go. And so the road to recovery tends to be a long and treacherous one but if done with patience and care, can lead you right to where you started.

The lessons I learned from this is:
1. Always STRETCH before exercising. The one time you blow it off, you will regret it…
2. Be grateful for each of your limbs and get MOVING while you have the ability to.
3. I FAIL at using crutches. It really shouldn’t be that hard but it just feels so awkward and that bar really digs up under your arms…
4. I WANT MY KNEE BACK! You really “don’t know what you got till it’s gone”…