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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar. 31, 2008
    Posts
    150

    Default Broken Collarbone: how to stay entertained while I heal?

    Alright folks, I had the unfun experience of breaking my collarbone last saturday severely enough to require surgery with metal plates and pins. The docs said 4-6 months before I can ride again... and 6-8 weeks in a sling. I go to get my stitches out today...

    But what on earth should i do to stay entertained while i can't ride or work?
    Do What You Can With What You Have Where You Are!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan. 19, 2005
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    12,680

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Stay Gold View Post
    Alright folks, I had the unfun experience of breaking my collarbone last saturday severely enough to require surgery with metal plates and pins. The docs said 4-6 months before I can ride again... and 6-8 weeks in a sling. I go to get my stitches out today...

    But what on earth should i do to stay entertained while i can't ride or work?

    I went to work 2 days after I broke mine.....of course I sit behind a desk most of the time Lots of reading, movies etc...time will go by quickly. I didn't have surgery on mine...broke it in two places but it healed well. I think I started back riding after about 4-6 weeks (not with the docs permission though). Just take your time and let yourself heal......this is a do as I say not as I do kinda thing! It is a very sucky injury....getting dressed in the am was PITA (and I needed help for a few weeks)....I also couldn't sleep laying down for what seemed like forever.

    If it makes you feel better.....I have a friend going out on bed rest for 4 months (preg. related).....I think I would go nuts after a week!!! So at least you can get out and about quicker than her!
    ** The difference between genius and stupidity is genius has its limits. -- Albert Einstein **



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul. 13, 2006
    Location
    St. Louis
    Posts
    676

    Default

    I am so sorry!! I went through a similar situation a few months ago with a broken foot, and spent some time in a full cast. It's not fun.

    Things to do . . . well, I knit, so many projects were completed and new ones started. I watched a lot of movies and spent a lot of time online. Reading is always good as well.

    I have some great friends that would kidnap me and take me to horse shows as a spectator, or out for dinner/lunch.

    With the holidays just around the corner, can you get around the kitchen? Might be hard in a sling though. Baking your Christmas gifts could be fun. I have always wanted to do that but just can't seem to carve out the time.

    Do you scrapbook? If you are anything like me, you have drawers of pictures just stacked up. You could actually put them in scrapbooks or photo albums after putting them in chronological order.

    Fortunately I was able to work. I just couldn't drive or do anything that didn't agree with crutches.

    Good luck and hope you are on the mend sooner than anticipated!



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun. 22, 2001
    Location
    Coatesville, Pa.
    Posts
    5,469

    Default

    I was bored out of my mid during my recovery. Thankfully I was able to go back to mom and dad's. I couldn't dress myself or anything! Ugh.

    I think its a great time to read books, educational or otherwise.

    Also catching up on old shows or movies.

    I think scrapbooking or loading your online photo albums can be fun to enjoy the trips down memory lane.

    ~Emily
    "Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgment that something is more important than fear. The brave may not live forever but the cautious do not live at all." ~2001 The Princess Diaries



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar. 31, 2008
    Posts
    150

    Default

    Thanks for the ideas... and yes, I had to give up my awesome new job in NJ and was shipped back to the west coast to my folks' to mend... the whole family never wants me to sit on a horse again... i think they are nuts!

    I think once the bone sets more and i can exercise a bit I'll be happier. It just sucks going from working with the horses 14 hours a day to sitting at home all day. urgh.

    Life will also be easier when I can use both hands/arms... and shower... oh how i look forward to my first shower!
    Do What You Can With What You Have Where You Are!



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun. 27, 2002
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    5,180

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Stay Gold View Post
    I think once the bone sets more and i can exercise a bit I'll be happier. It just sucks going from working with the horses 14 hours a day to sitting at home all day. urgh.
    Once your incision is adequately healed, ask you doctor if you can swim. Obviously, he may not want you to use that arm (strap it to your body with vetrap), but you can prop up on a kickboard for some good, low impact exercise. As soon as my cast came off my leg, but before I was allowed to be weight bearing (symdesmosis screw had to be removed before I was allowed to bear weight), I was in the pool, albeit very carefully. I was sick of sitting around and craving some sort of physical activity, and swimming helped.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec. 12, 2007
    Location
    Olympia, WA
    Posts
    370

    Default

    I broke mine last May and I watched training videos and caught up on all my reading. My husband (non horsey) hates that I am going to jump again. Mine healed great but it also took surgery since I broke the end off. Good luck and relax....



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar. 31, 2008
    Posts
    150

    Default

    there is a stationary bike here at the house, i think that might be my first exercise... it shouldn't make my shoulder bounce at all. i've been told i can't get the wound wet for quite some time after the stitches come out to prevent infection.
    Do What You Can With What You Have Where You Are!



  9. #9
    Join Date
    May. 31, 2006
    Location
    Columbus, OH
    Posts
    734

    Default

    4-6 months? Really? Wow...that seems like a long time.

    I'm sorry about your collarbone, I can sympathize with you having just gone through that 2 months ago. I just broke mine in September, fell smack on it and it broke in two places (one piece was set at a 90 degree angle to the other two holding them apart front to back). I broke it about Sept. 17th, had surgery with a titanium plate on October 2 or 3rd. I got the all clear to ride about 3 or 4 weeks ago (I had to have 6 weeks off after the surgery) and am allowed to start jumping on the 24th of this month.

    Life will also be easier when I can use both hands/arms... and shower... oh how i look forward to my first shower!
    Haha. How true. You never notice many things in life you do with 2 arms/hands.

    I had my mom and sister-in-law ride my horse for me so I still got to go out every day and see him and brush him with one arm. I read up on my books and really sat down and thought about how to improve my riding when I got back on and used the time to just relax, sit, watch TV, and do my homework.

    You'll make it through. Sending good healing vibes your way for a quick recovery.
    God forbid that I go to a heaven in which there are no horses



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 31, 2008
    Posts
    150

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Marney View Post
    I broke mine last May and I watched training videos and caught up on all my reading. My husband (non horsey) hates that I am going to jump again. Mine healed great but it also took surgery since I broke the end off. Good luck and relax....
    ouch! you broke th end off... that souns painful. mine broke in the middle, then the bones slid and were over lapping each other, the whole length of the bone.

    i wish i had a cool story of how i broke mine... after training cci** horses all summer, grooming them at Fair Hill, etc... and how did I fall? i was schooling a rank lesson pony in an indoor arena at a trot... As i flew through the air i remember thinking, "i can't believe this little snot just bucked me off..."

    I can ride just about any horse buck... but those ponies w/ itty bitty necks... man i got sling shotted to the ground :-p
    Do What You Can With What You Have Where You Are!



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar. 31, 2008
    Posts
    150

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Tuckertoo View Post
    4-6 months? Really? Wow...that seems like a long time.

    I'm sorry about your collarbone, I can sympathize with you having just gone through that 2 months ago. I just broke mine in September, fell smack on it and it broke in two places (one piece was set at a 90 degree angle to the other two holding them apart front to back). I broke it about Sept. 17th, had surgery with a titanium plate on October 2 or 3rd. I got the all clear to ride about 3 or 4 weeks ago (I had to have 6 weeks off after the surgery) and am allowed to start jumping on the 24th of this month.



    Haha. How true. You never notice many things in life you do with 2 arms/hands.

    I had my mom and sister-in-law ride my horse for me so I still got to go out every day and see him and brush him with one arm. I read up on my books and really sat down and thought about how to improve my riding when I got back on and used the time to just relax, sit, watch TV, and do my homework.

    You'll make it through. Sending good healing vibes your way for a quick recovery.
    thanks! ouchies, yours sounded really painful! i don't think i could have waited 2 weeks for my surgery, the 1 day wait was agony enough!

    i've totally been removed from the horses...as the accident was at my job in NJ and now I am in CA... (hey, can't complain about having the warmer weather to heal)
    Do What You Can With What You Have Where You Are!



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun. 22, 2001
    Location
    Coatesville, Pa.
    Posts
    5,469

    Default

    Even though it sounds like your break was worse, I would happily trade how I broke mine.

    I own a small piece of the Ky horse Park property through mine. The fence was part of the out of the head of the lake during the October event. Whats now team challenge, and the fence was an Intermediate question, two huge sections of tree trunk ontop of each other, no lean, straight vertical. But on the landing side was a natural ditch that the horse was supposed to clear with their jumping effort....but they couldn't see the ditch!! Ugh. Sufficive to say that the related distance between the jump up the bank out of the water then the 2 long or 3 strides to this was a lot for an Int. course billed as a "good move up course." In fact the distance had been used before in the 3* when the brich rail oxer over the ditch was there. Incidentally the horses could see the ditch then.

    So my horse added for the 3, and then did a pop over the logs like a deer. Had there not been the ditch, we'd have probably been ok. But sadly it was there. Last thing I saw from in the tack was him doing a headstand and there were large shoots of grass sticking up between his ears!! Then I went off and he crushed me. Doctors think he was kicking his hind legs when he rolled over me because I did a similar fracture to yours. It broke in the middle, and both ends, but only the broken tip slid over the new broken ends. Of course that caused a "debris" field of bone chips.

    To this day I am the only person I know to spend 2 days in the hospital for a broken collarbone!!!

    So my way sucked, but I can say I own part of the horse park!!!


    Also... I was cleared to ride after 9 weeks, but when I did I could feel the bone moving, so I benched myself for another 4 weeks.


    ~Emily
    "Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgment that something is more important than fear. The brave may not live forever but the cautious do not live at all." ~2001 The Princess Diaries



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep. 20, 2005
    Location
    Idaho
    Posts
    1,797

    Default

    Oh man! I'm so sorry! When I was sick with mono for 2 years, I had to find my own fun. Ashamed to say much of that time was spent on the computer or watching TV. I also took up some "old lady hobbies," namely beading and knitting. Tried my hand at drawing and watercolor as well. You probably can't knit with one hand, but maybe there's a craft you could try? Decoupage or scrapbooking probably doesn't need two arms. Who knows, maybe we'll see you open your own line of horse based crafts.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul. 19, 2003
    Location
    Middleburg, VA
    Posts
    12,967

    Default

    Oh, god...so sorry. And to think we were joking about this type of stuff the other day. (Because, you know, eventers have warped senses of humor).

    Boredom wise I have one word: HULU!

    www.hulu.com is fantastic. You'll probably never run out of things to watch.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan. 30, 2004
    Posts
    190

    Red face TAKE YOUR TIME!!!!!!!!!!!!

    First, I am very sorry that you've had this injury. Unfortunately, this is a subject on which I havetoo much experience. I broke my collar bone in March of 2007, have had 4 surgeries since then (yep, that's right--FOUR), and the thing is still not healed completely!!. I'm totally bored and depressed....on the verge of breakdown somedays. (Previously, I always thought that a broken CB was just no big deal. Needless to say...it has become a big deal for me).

    With out going into all the details, I highly recommend that you stay in your sling as long, if not LONGER, than the doctor advises, and even if you FEEL like you can ride, swim, bear weight -- especially if you are getting older. (I'm in my early 40s, and have learned that bones don't heal as quickly as they did when I was younger.). Also, there is not a lot of blood supply or natural stability in the collar bone area...so it is hard to keep it immobile and to heal. Take it very slowly and make sure your doctor tells you how much weight you can bear, and how much motion you can take at each follow up appointment. BE VERY CONSERVATIVE and ask a lot of questions !!!!!!!!!!!!!! Make sure your doctor is a SHOULDER specialist, and that he/she understands what a "regular level of activity" is for you. (e.g., resuming "regular activity" for the average person, is not necessarily the same thing as resuming "regular activity" for the horse person.)

    As for boredome, I have read and re-read many books on riding, dressage, jumping, horse care, etc. etc. Lots of lurking on Coth.

    Keep us posted. Feel free to PM if need to vent/whine.
    Best, Koko



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Sep. 19, 2002
    Location
    Laytonsville, MD, USA
    Posts
    59

    Default Welcome to the Collarbone Club!

    Ditto the advice about keeping your arm still and using the sling. I broke my collarbone in late Sept. last year and had surgery on it Oct. 2. (plated and screwed back together). Everyone I know who broke their collarbone and didn't follow doctors' orders took many months to heal and/or needed additional surgeries because the bone didn't heal properly.

    Wear that sling!

    Mine healed in 10 weeks and I was 42 years old at the time. I also made sure to take a concoction of vitamins and supplements that promote healing - calcium, boron, lysine, vitamin C, and a multivitamin. You can find a lot of info on the internet about what nutrients promote bone growth. Make sure you eat healthy too.

    As for how to keep busy - you should be able to do the stationary biking, and lower body strength training, within a few weeks. Just keep that arm still! Knitting is a good idea - I took up needlepoint while healing. TV gets REALLY boring very quickly.

    Good luck!



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Sep. 19, 2002
    Location
    Laytonsville, MD, USA
    Posts
    59

    Default One more thing

    While recuperating it's fun to do some natural horsemanship stuff with your horse. I taught mine to back with a hand signal (very handy for trailering) and had a lot of fun just free lunging him. He enjoyed the NH "games" so much that he started trotting up to me in the field when I arrived at the barn. I guess he liked it better when I was broken because now he's not as easy to catch!



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar. 31, 2008
    Posts
    150

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Xctrygirl View Post
    To this day I am the only person I know to spend 2 days in the hospital for a broken collarbone!!!
    Wow, but at least you have a good story... mine is just lame :-p

    And i spent 3 days in the hospital :-p the day of injury, had surgery 24 hours later, then they kept me another 32 hours after surgery to make sure all was ok.

    Very smart of you to give yourself longer to heal when it didn't feel right though1
    Do What You Can With What You Have Where You Are!



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar. 31, 2008
    Posts
    150

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by yellowbritches View Post
    Oh, god...so sorry. And to think we were joking about this type of stuff the other day. (Because, you know, eventers have warped senses of humor).

    Boredom wise I have one word: HULU!

    www.hulu.com is fantastic. You'll probably never run out of things to watch.
    Hah, warped sense of humor, sheesh, i never would have guessed. my family is grossed out that i am highly entertained by my post-op x-rays showing the metal plate and 6 screws that now hold me together.... i think it's pretty cool!

    And yes, hulu is great... catch up on all those seasons where i didn't have cable
    Do What You Can With What You Have Where You Are!



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar. 31, 2008
    Posts
    150

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Koko View Post
    First, I am very sorry that you've had this injury. Unfortunately, this is a subject on which I havetoo much experience. I broke my collar bone in March of 2007, have had 4 surgeries since then (yep, that's right--FOUR), and the thing is still not healed completely!!. I'm totally bored and depressed....on the verge of breakdown somedays. (Previously, I always thought that a broken CB was just no big deal. Needless to say...it has become a big deal for me).

    With out going into all the details, I highly recommend that you stay in your sling as long, if not LONGER, than the doctor advises, and even if you FEEL like you can ride, swim, bear weight -- especially if you are getting older. (I'm in my early 40s, and have learned that bones don't heal as quickly as they did when I was younger.). Also, there is not a lot of blood supply or natural stability in the collar bone area...so it is hard to keep it immobile and to heal. Take it very slowly and make sure your doctor tells you how much weight you can bear, and how much motion you can take at each follow up appointment. BE VERY CONSERVATIVE and ask a lot of questions !!!!!!!!!!!!!! Make sure your doctor is a SHOULDER specialist, and that he/she understands what a "regular level of activity" is for you. (e.g., resuming "regular activity" for the average person, is not necessarily the same thing as resuming "regular activity" for the horse person.)

    As for boredome, I have read and re-read many books on riding, dressage, jumping, horse care, etc. etc. Lots of lurking on Coth.

    Keep us posted. Feel free to PM if need to vent/whine.
    Best, Koko
    oh gosh! i'm so sorry that you've been trying to recover from yours for 4 years... i can't even imagine how frustrating... but you make an excellent point... activity level for a full time horse person is far different than your average person.

    i hope you heal well too!
    Do What You Can With What You Have Where You Are!



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