I was always the person that danced a lot. In fact I studied dancing growing up such as ballet, modern, tap, acrobatics and gymnastics. And then one day, I was in a car accident and broke my legs and other major bones. I had been drinking at a work dinner, I never thought for a minute that my life would be in danger, or that I wouldn’t get home.
I was in hospital for about 4 months, started off in an induced coma and then hi-care at the Johannesburg General Hospital. During the trauma admission to ER, they put titanium in both of my shattered femur to help them grow back together. It was very lucky of me to get the care that I did by prompt medical response to the scene of the accident and being admitted to the student education hospital. I was unable to move for some time, but I eventually learned to walk again. And I soon went on extended trips overseas.
***Song that comes to mind here is – “Titanium – Sia and David Guetta”
You know all those people you meet at dance parties, amazingly they all came to visit me in hospital, will never forget that. The power of friends you meet there.
My lovely Mom brought me a tiny CD player for hospital, and I was able to listen to Bob Marley non-stop to feel happy.
***Song reference: “Three little birds – Bob Marley”
Cause every little thing, is gonna be alright! During every operation I went to, I would hum this tune and the medics would all know it and laugh with me. Nothing like some humour to brighten up another major operation.
I had a bi-lateral femur fracture, and they put these titanium rods in my legs, and accidently made one leg longer than the other. Its only 3cm, but hi-heels are now out of the question. I have 8 screws in my upper legs, and struggle to sleep on my sides. But you know, my legs were absolutely shattered, and I made it, I got through it. I have limited mobility and painful arthritus. Running is out of the question for example, but I can enjoy other sports like aqua and yoga.
I can dance better than before. I mean, imagine that instead of using my legs to dance, I just use my hips. And wow, THE HIPS DON’T LIE. I have even had compliments on my dancing, so that’s a real bonus. I have a spirit inside of me that hasn’t died and is still very much alive.
I remember the first time I got onto the dance floor at a friends’ house party, wearing my fancy old jeans, I felt amazing. Crutches and all, I could do a few songs, and my friends couldn’t stop saying how happy they were for me, that I could walk again. But you know what was more important to me, was that I could dance! I got my life back, I got happiness back, I got even more than I bargained for. It’s no fun sitting in a wheelchair listening to music (although I of course did do that for a while), it is just a whole lot more fun being on the dance floor.
If I had to live that night all over again, I wouldn’t be drinking on a school night, and if I did I wouldn’t be driving myself home. I would know that it is OK to say no and act responsibly. I have the right to insist on a venue for a work function that does not have a popular bar inside of it. I should insist on a menu at the restaurant that is not laced with hidden alcohol in the sauce. I shouldn’t have to sit overlooking a seductive enclosed wine cellar, and perhaps my boss shouldn’t have asked me to choose a special red wine for dinner from that private cellar. Wine-not!
Moving on in life, the more appropriate thing to do is to respect the life inside of my body and treat myself with dignity.