Injury and Logistics

For someone who is a good planner, I’m finding this week a little overwhelming. As I was still recovering from the stomach virus of the weekend, my husband and I learned that our daughter had broken her leg skiing. She had surgery in Vancouver, British Columbia, on Monday, and I headed out to see her Monday night.

ER Xray of daughter's leg

ER Xray of daughter’s leg

I got to her hospital room Tuesday mid-morning, hung around while the hospital staff assessed her condition, and we headed back to her apartment in Seattle Tuesday afternoon, arriving around 7:00pm. She will be on crutches for six weeks, no weight on the leg, which will be difficult, but she should be fine in the end.

Now, I live with the uncertainty of how long my daughter will need me and how to stay on top of my obligations back home while making sure she can cope by herself.

This whole experience has taught me the importance of logistics. Other than breaking her leg in the first place, everything else in the 48 hour whirlwind between learning of the injury and getting her back to her home went pretty well:

  • I found a reasonably priced last-minute ticket from Kansas City to Vancouver. (It was cheaper to get to Vancouver than to Seattle . . . even if I had made my connection in Seattle! Air fares are crazy.)
  • I got the essentials done at home before I left on Monday. I kicked myself for procrastinating on some of my to-do items, but at last I could leave home without fretting about immediate needs. (Other than buying groceries, which I did leave for my husband to do.)
  • The surgery itself went well. The surgeon called me midday Monday to let me know my daughter was fine, which I really appreciated. And she texted me just as my first flight was leaving, so I knew she was fine.
  • My flights were on time, and my tight connection was not a problem because my first flight landed at Gate 33 and my second flight left from Gate 32.
  • My daughter’s friends got her car and her belongings from Whistler to the Vancouver hospital, and left her car keys and the parking ticket with her. So when I arrived, it was easy to find the car and pack up.
  • The Canadian and American medical systems, while they don’t talk to each other perfectly, so far seem to be accommodating each other. My daughter has had to pay for some services out-of-pocket, and will have to work it out with her insurer later, but no one has balked at providing care or refused to cover anything yet. Thankfully, she has a good job with good insurance.
  • The road trip from Vancouver to Seattle went smoothly, despite my unfamiliarity with the roads and her car. We missed the worst of rush hour in both Vancouver and Seattle, had only a five-minute wait at the border, and it only rained intermittently.
  • There was enough food in her apartment for dinner when we returned. (But on Wednesday I’ll need to buy groceries for my daughter, as I did not for my husband before I left home.)

For all the things that have gone well so far this week, I am grateful. And most importantly, I am thankful that my daughter is young and healthy and will recover.

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  1. I am sorry to hear about your daughter’s leg. As you said, thankfully, she is young and healthy, so her recovery should go well. Six weeks on crutches will be tough. I hope you are feeling better.

  2. Oh, dear, reminds me of when, with misgivings, I set out for New York, wondering how my husband would manage, his capabilities being somewhat diminished by his health. As I departed, he was preparing to host a regular monthly poker party. At the plane switch in Chicago, I called home. I recognized the voice that answered, not my husband, and thought wildly for a moment that I had not called my home number. Recovering, I realized that the speaker was one of the poker players, probably the one sitting closest to the phone. So I asked to speak to my husband and was told, “He’s taking Joe to the hospital. Joe fell in the doorway.”

    My husband, who could hardly manage on his own, taking someone else to the hospital? I almost turned around to head for home.

    Sounds like you are through with the most serious issues of your daughter’s ski injury, but stop and take a few deep breaths for yourself.

  3. Sorry you and your daughter have had such an unsettling and painful experience. Fortunately, you’re a quick study and can cope — and I bet your daughter can, too.

    We were in Whistler this summer riding the ski lifts for the view. Much safer!


  4. Many thanks for all the comments and good wishes.
    Not noted in the original post was the post-operative requirement that I give my daughter a blood thinner injection in the belly each day for the next 10 days. She and I are both quite squeamish. But we both survived the first one. In fact, she thought I was overly enthusiastic with the needle. I just wanted it over quickly.

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    • Thanks for the comment and good wishes. She’s recovering, but it will be a long process. I’m still with her, but heading home this weekend.
      And the U.S. docs could read the Canadian x-rays!

    • Thanks for the good wishes. She is recovering, but it will be a long process. I’m still with her, but heading home this weekend. And the U.S. doctors had software that could read the Canadian x-rays, so they’re still talking!

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