Some intimate images that my partner James took at the time, as he had the foresight to realise I would want to be able to look back at once of the most significant moments of my life.
I have mixed emotions about this image. You can see all the medical equipment I’m hooked up to as they try to stabilise my stats. They wrapped me in bubble wrap because patients with traumatic injuries can lose body heat very quickly, so it’s one of the easiest ways to help maintain body temperature.
I can only imagine what it was like for James as he sat by my side wondering what my prognosis was.
But now I find myself studying the liquid eyeliner on my eyelids which I think is pretty nicely applied. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to achieve this since my accident and is just one of the little things that has continued to frustrate me. I know its vain, but as someone who previously had a career managing big name cosmetics counters in department stores, it had become part of my identity.
When I was in hospital I don’t think I ever understood the magnitude of what had happened to me. Actually now I’m not sure if I was able to even take it seriously.
At no point was I particularly panicked about the fact I had woken up in hospital. I realised my head and neck hurt like nothing I had ever know before but I wasn’t really able to analyse much else.
My hair was crazy because I wasn’t allowed to brush it as I had an injury to my head. I had to wear a neck brace as 2 vertebra in my neck had become compressed so I needed more support. But I hated it. I found it hot and uncomfortable and kept taking it off.
I had to be retrained how to walk. Initially I could barely move my right foot and had “foot drop” caused by nerve damage. But as that returned the ongoing problem was my lack of strength and coordination in my left. The physiotherapists were very patient with me but at the same time encouraged me to do more than I initially wanted too.
They knew my muscles needed to relearn how to behave and so I had to push myself.
I was repulsed by the smell of my own hair. With lots of dried blood in it it was revolting. So after not being allowed to tackle it to give my laceration a chance to heal I was itching to give it a go.
James had to help me wash as I was too weak and unsteady to manage on my own. I’m not sure how long it took but it was such a relief as James gently helped me wash and rinse my fool smelling hair.
Part of my hair had to be shaved so the medics could deal with the laceration on my head. As I worked for a Hairdressing Academy at the time I remember worrying about what people would think. Again I clearly wasn’t really understanding the implications of my situation as my priorities were misjudged.
But more than anything I was relived to be home. Little did I know this was just the beginning…
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