By Veronica

(Free from) bondage

Crack open the champagne! This is not what I expected from my visit to the orthopaedic surgeon today. He asked me a couple of questions and then said, "We'll have  that off today then", leaving me spluttering. "It's fine," he said. "You can't see consolidation on the X-ray because it starts as fibres that develop into bone later. After the first month you can start putting a little weight on it."

Half an hour later I lay on his couch while he showed me (using his own hand) how his circular saw wouldn't chop my leg off. But I was wondering why he even needed it. He was startled to realise that I only had half a plaster round the back of my leg, held on with bandage and providing plenty of wriggle room. "They should have replaced it with a full cast after a few days once the swelling had gone down," he tutted. But no-one had suggested this to me.

Anyway, once he'd used a scalpel to slice the bandage, he pulled the cast off and was duly flabbergasted by the range of pain-free movement in my ankle, much more than he'd expected at this stage. So doing everything wrong seems to have been the right thing in this case. "Go to the swimming pool this afternoon and start walking in it," he suggested. Yesssss!!

I hopped out with a gloriously naked leg (hadn't brought a spare shoe with me) and paused in the shade of the overhang outside the building while S brought the car over. "Don't put that foot down!" snapped a voice behind me when the tip of my toe brushed the ground. I was being followed by a random physiotherapist.

We drove to B's and had a long leisurely lunch with her (with fizz to start) and then called at the pharmacy on the way home to get my new ankle support. Still not really daring to put any weight on it, and I haven't had time to go to the swimming pool, but it feels like a major step forward (sorry).

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