As some of you know, Jana fractured her tibia and ruptured her quadricep tendon, in her left leg, yesterday. We were at a friend’s house for a small group get together. Most the people were playing sand volleyball, while a handful of us were still watching the Husker game.
During a commercial break I went to go check on Duncan, who was napping. He was screaming and crying so I went to try and calm him down. After a few minutes he was fine, but when I went to put him down again he started screaming and crying. At that moment, someone walked in and said, “You’re wife has hurt her knee playing volleyball.”
I was ready to run to Jana, but Duncan is screaming. The guy offers help and I ask if he can watch Duncan. (And I’m really sorry but I can’t recall his name since we just joined the small group and this was our second time meeting with the group. A nice guy who helped me out in a pinch. Many thanks to him.)
I go down to the sand pit and I see everyone huddled around Jana, who is laying on the ground. She’s in obvious pain. (Before I got there she was apparently writhing.) Thankfully, one of the guys there, Jamey Hendricksen, is an EMT. He’s checking on Jana by the time I get there. What was great was him taking control and just calming things down. Jana says she heard a cracking and popping sound. He thinks it’s a tendon in her knee.
What was sweet during this was Liam coming over and checking on Jana on his own accord. He did this before I got down there, and when I was there he would come over and ask Jana, “Are you okay, Mommy?”. His face showed concern. It made me smile.
We get Jana moved and in a chair. She can’t put any weight on the leg without adding to the immense pain. We start icing her knee. Jamey tells us we need to go to the ER and get it checked out. He tells us to go to Immanuel and where we can drive up so someone will come out with a wheelchair.
I’m hearing this and trying to think about the boys, but Brian and Jen Smith offer their services to watch them before I can ask anyone. We unload the car seats, say goodbye to Liam (Duncan is finally asleep we are told) and everyone else, and pull away for the ER.
We start driving and I start discussing plans about what we need to do after we leave the ER, but then Jana starts crying. She’s not holding back on how much she hurts. I’m doing my best to comfort her while getting to Immanuel as fast as I can within reason.
We pull up and everything goes exactly like Jamey said it would. We get checked in and then we wait for an hour. The ER is backed up. We begin to hear the response, “You were playing sand volleyball?!?” Yep. Jana actually had on three pairs of socks to keep her feet warm while playing, but now all they are doing is keeping her cold since they got wet while playing. I take them off her, while waiting, and we proceed to get sand all over the place.
We get back to the room and the staff start taking care of her. The initial diagnosis is an injury to her quadricep tendon. Jana gets a shot of morphine and they prep for x-rays. They were going to take x-rays to see if there were any bone chips as a result of the tendon injury. However, the x-rays reveal a fracture to her tibial plateau. (Huh?) Near the top of her tibia, just below the knee, is where the fracture is. The concern is the bone could be displaced and that would require surgery.
While this is going on I’m trying to think through what needs to happen with Jana and the boys. Who can help out when I can’t be there for them in the upcoming days and weeks.
We’re fortunate that an orthopedic specialist, whose specialty is knees, happens to be at Immanuel checking on another patient. They put in a call to him and he is able to come by and start the process of checking on Jana. They also prep Jana for a CT scan to find out more details about the injury. Surgery still remains a distinct possibility that night.
CT scan happens and then we wait an hour for the results. In the meantime, I start calling people and making plans. An early development is Jana’s mom being able to come out Monday to help out. The boys are doing well with the Smiths. I am relieved a bit.
Results come back from the scan and it is a ruptured quadricep tendon, along with the fractured tibia, but surgery is not needed at the moment. However, it’s very precarious. Jana absolutely cannot put weight on her left leg at a minimum of 4-6 weeks. If she does she could do further damage to her knee and surgery would then be required. The particular brace needed to immobilize her knee is out of stock, so they put Jana’s left leg in a soft cast.
At this point I realize we’re not getting out of the hospital till close to 10. I call the Smiths and they offer to watch the boys for the night. Liam and Duncan are doing exceptionally well, considering everything. They probably enjoyed playing with the Smith’s three kids!
The staff go over things with Jana and me. Monday morning we need to set up an appointment with the orthopedic specialist we just saw. We begin the process of checking out and heading home.
After picking up some Sonic (one of the few places open after 10 PM), we make it home. Jana is talking to her mom about an idea I had. Jana’s mom comes out on Monday, stays a week, but then I drive Jana, the boys and her mom back to Ohio where Jana can recuperate better. Plus, her mom’s house is much more conducive to someone in Jana’s condition than our split level home. We were already planning to be out in Ohio for Thanksgiving, so I’d drive back out there in a few weeks. Granted, part of this depends on the orthopedist and the diagnosis.
So, that’s the latest. Jana didn’t sleep particularly well last night. She’s taking pain medication every 6 hours. When we go see the orthopedist we’ll be able to get the soft cast off and get her into a brace.
Thanks to everyone who has prayed, emailed, texted, posted something on Facebook, called, offered help and whatever else I may have missed. Thanks. Considering everything, I was grateful the injury happened when we were around friends. Not only that, but people we’d trust to watch the boys in our absence. And, there was an EMT there who checked on Jana initially.
Please continue to pray for us. What can you pray for?
- Jana’s health
- Quick recovery
- Liam and Duncan would understand situation as best they can. Especially so that they don’t jump on Jana’s knee when wanting to play or cuddle.
- Jana’s mobility while recuperating
- Pain in leg would subside
- Need to borrow van or suburban to drive Jana, her mom, and the boys out to Ohio. Our car won’t work with Jana’s injury and how her leg has to be positioned. (She rode in the backseat on the way home last night.)
- Gratefulness for staff at Immanuel that cared for her.
- Costs would be minimal