From Bronchitis to Broken Knees: But Still, I’m Thankful.

It was a cold, dark November night.

I awoke from a strange dream, breathless from another coughing fit. I sat up, took a swig of water, popped a cough drop, but nothing quieted my hacking.

When I started to feel dizzy from lack of oxygen, I rose from my bed and headed for the stairs – and the codeine-laced cough medicine that awaited me below.

Still hacking, I stepped down the first stair. But below my foot was not the hard tread of the threadbare carpet, but something soft and slippery.

Before I knew it I was falling down one, two, three, four, five…six stairs.

I heard an ominous pop and my kneecap started to slide. Petrified of another dislocation, I slammed it back in with my fist.

Only then did I realize I was in serious pain. And that there was no way in hell I was going to be able to stand up on my own.

“Brian?” I yelled. “Brian, I need help.”


“BRIAN? Brian, HELP me!”

Still nothing.

“For the love of God, Brian, WAKE UP!”

I heard the first whimpers from Tori’s room, meaning she was awake. But still nothing from our room.

“Tori? Tori, I need you to wake up your daddy,” I called.

“Mommy?” she called back sleepily.

“Yeah, baby, I need you to come here.”

She trudged down the hallway and peered down the stairs at me.

“Mommy? Are you okay?”

“No, honey. I fell down the stairs and I need help. Can you get daddy?”


She disappeared into our room, calling for her daddy. A lifetime (or a  few minutes) later, he appeared, pulling on his jeans.

“What’s wrong? Where are you?”

“I fell down the stairs. Didn’t you hear me calling you?”

“No, I had my headphones on.” Then, as he shook himself awake, “Why weren’t you hanging on to the banister? You of all people…”

I have a history of falling down the stairs, you see. But I didn’t want to hear it.

“Can you please just help me up,” I snarled.

He did, and a short while later, I was ensconced on the couch, ice pack on my knee, three Advil in my stomach.

“Do you want to go to the hospital?” he asked.

“No. No, I do not. I’m fine.”

I was so not fine. But I was determined not to admit it.

In fact, I didn’t go to the doctor for two days. I even went to work. It wasn’t until my leg started to resemble that of an elephant that I gave in. And still, I thought nothing much was wrong.

Nothing much, that is, until the doctor looked at me with horror.

“When did you do this?” she asked.

I told her.

“And you’re just now getting this looked at?” She shook her head.

Several painful moments later, after she twisted and turned my leg in all sorts of directions it didn’t want to go, she had a diagnosis.

“Something is really wrong in there,” she said. “I’m thinking you’ve got some torn meniscus floating around. You, young lady, are going to see an orthopedist.”

I groaned. That was not in my Thanksgiving weekend plans (but at least she called me a “young” lady).

Then she ordered me to stay off the thing entirely. Made me get crutches and everything.

I hate crutches.

Still, I’m using them. And forcing myself to stay put on the couch as much as possible.

It sucks.

But at least I didn’t dislocate the damn thing entirely. And for that? I’m grateful.

Stupid knee.




8 Comments on From Bronchitis to Broken Knees: But Still, I’m Thankful.

  1. Wendy
    November 23, 2012 at 11:19 pm (3 years ago)

    Yuck. I am having sympathy knee pain for you right now. Also having horrible flashbacks to when I dislocated my knee and – you guessed it – slammed it back into place with my fist. Yuck yuck yuck yuck. And whimper.

    • Amber
      November 25, 2012 at 7:51 pm (3 years ago)

      Ohhhh, I had forgotten that. That was bad. Don’t have too many sympathy pains! You’ve got your hands full right now!

  2. Rebecca
    November 24, 2012 at 12:26 pm (3 years ago)

    Yikes! You poor thing.

    Hope you are good as new very soon.

    • Amber
      November 25, 2012 at 7:50 pm (3 years ago)

      Thank you, lady! I’m sure it’ll heal, eventually. Someday, I hope to have a bionic knee!

  3. addie | culicurious
    November 24, 2012 at 5:15 pm (3 years ago)

    oh my! that’s awful. I’m glad it wasn’t worse. But still sucks. I hope you recover quickly!!

    • Amber
      November 25, 2012 at 7:49 pm (3 years ago)

      Thanks! I do too…the holidays are no time to be lame!

  4. Elona
    November 27, 2012 at 10:12 pm (3 years ago)

    Seriously, what is it with you and stairs? Your next house needs to be stair free. Or perhaps ramps. Yes, definitely ramps. Or one of those chair thingies that was in Gremlins that you can ride up and down.

    At least it wasn’t marble stairs like at the Hermitage (or was it EEEERmitage). Didn’t your camera bear the brunt of that?


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  1. […] year, I’m going to bake, even if I have to prop my knee up on a bar stool to do it. There will be peanut butter kisses, sugar cookies, and some Russian tea cakes, at least […]

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