Last weekend we had a dog sledding adventure on the Tuul River, about 90 minutes outside of Ulaanbaatar. It was wonderful, and I will write a post about it soon. But I will also be writing another post about adventures in health care, because… About an hour or so into our first day of sledding, we both fell off our sleds. Emerson’s lead dog, Luna, had a mind of her own, as dogs do, and decided to take Emerson’s sled up a 8- or 10-inch-tall ice ledge, instead of following the lead sled around it. My lead dog, Blue, followed Emerson’s sled.
I saw Emerson go down, and we were hearing directly for them. I panicked and hit the breaks, which was a bad reaction. My feet flew backwards off the runners because the sled was already heading up, I think. It all happened really quickly except the next bit, which was in ridiculously slow motion. Because I didn’t let go of the sled immediately, I got dragged just long enough to land like Superman with my shoulders even with the ice ledge. I felt a horrible crunch in my left shoulder, and immediately curled up on my right side on the ice.
It took me while to get up, and once I did, I knew there was something wrong with my arm. Turns out, four days and one hospital visit later (well, two, really: one to make an appointment because they weren’t answering the phone, and another two days later to get my shoulder checked out), I learned I have a subcapital humerus fracture. But at the time, I didn’t know it was broken and figured it was just a torn ligament. Emerson, fortunately, was unhurt except for a sore knee. I was able to ride the rest of the way in the lead sled (getting in and out was excruciating), and we spent the night in a guest ger in a family’s compound. I asked our guide, Joel of Wind of Mongolia (which I highly recommend for dog sledding), if we could take a car back to Ulaanbaatar from there the next morning, and he arranged it. Emerson could have probably dog sledded the next day, but they wanted to ride back with me.
So…at least no surgery needed, but six to eight weeks in a sling, and limited to whatever I can do with one hand. Which makes typing really slow. I have speech to text software, but I don’t talk nearly as well as I write. I’ll still try to post here once a week or so, but the posts may be a bit shorter than usual. I don’t know, maybe that’s a good thing? But I will be writing about dog sledding, and also my very first MRI. It’s been quite a week!