Horrible Injuries

I’ve broken more bones than most of my friends..

All right.  Let me rephrase that.  I’ve broken more bones than both of my friends, but let’s move quickly on.

I broke my elbow, my ankle, my wrist, my fingers, my toes and my skull.  Not only that — I think I broke my spine, but that’s only because a recent X-ray showed two fused vertebrae, which I  attribute to acting the maggot as a 16-year-old and falling out a window onto my back, crippling me.

I don’t know how any of us came back to our parents alive.  I really don’t.  Who knew I crushed my vertebrae?  Not me, that’s for sure.

How did I break my elbow?  Well, it was at the same time I broke my skull, and it happened the day I tried to kill my grandmother, although in my defence, I was only five.  We don’t talk about that incident in the family and nobody mentions whether the surgeons saw a series of numbers on my shaven scalp.  Some said  yes and others — the surviving ones — say no.

There it stays.

How did I break my wrist horribly, displacing my hand by a full two inches out of line with my forearm?  Simple.  Acting the maggot on a bicycle.

How did I break my ankle?  Acting the maggot playing soccer.

Fingers?  Same.

Toes?  Same.

Skeletal pain is not something anyone understands unless they’ve been there.  When I broke that wrist, I was a student, sharing a flat with another of the same kind, and on that particular night the hospital A&E was overwhelmed with casualties, so they put the arm in a plaster slab and let me go home, on the very sound logic that there was no point having me hanging around getting in people’s way.

I went back to the hovel we lived in, and tried to sleep, but the entire night was one single pain-filled hallucination.

The broken wrist was a light-bulb of agony, radiating pain in all directions equally.  I woke my flatmate up in the middle of the night.

Mike!  Mike!


Can you feel it?


The pain.  Can’t you feel it?

Shut up.

Jesus Christ, there’s nothing like a broken bone to get your full, undivided attention.  It’s hard-core pain.

To this day, I can’t look at bone injuries in sports videos.  I just want to hide with my hands over my head.



18 thoughts on “Horrible Injuries

  1. i feel your pain, sugar! absolutely! broken foot, broken leg, different times, but the same side. i cringed when i saw the x-ray posted above! (and the stitches on my leg started tingling) i>jesus wept! xoxoxox

  2. Tellin ya now. Serious pain. I can’t understand how these jockeys get up on the horses knowing they’re going to be breaking bones

  3. Broken arm, broken wrist, and dislocated shoulder twice. The wrist was school football and I remember the doctors waiting 6 hours for parental consent before they’d do anything!

    2nd time i dislocated the shoulder i was in a waiting room for 8 hours (NW London), agony, and i thought i was going to puke with the pain. I mentioned it to a nurse and she told me to stick my head between my knees – I’ve hated her ever since!

  4. I’ve broken both my ankles,one of them twice.The most serious pain though was a smashed heel which detached the achilles tendon.Now I need a shoe which is a half size bigger than my left than my left shoe to accommodate my enlarged achilles.There are no plaster casts or bandages for that sort of injury,or at least I had none.Unless you’ve experienced broken bones as you say Bock,it’s hard for anyone to understand how painful it is.

  5. I’ve broken nothing..
    Yesterday though I cut me right index finger opening a can of tuna.. there’s still a little nick there. Very inconvenient when it gets wet.

  6. Broke a leg 20 years ago…still get the shivers thinking ’bout it…brutal it was

  7. Ach, wuss! On 3 seperate occasions I managed to severe each of my legs above the waist. I’ve lost count of the times I have had to bungee a limb back onto my torso and crawl over 1000 kms with both arms broken, a burst appendix, several gum boils and my piles on fire. All on the same weekend. Those 18 – 30 holidays are not all they are cracked up to be, let me tell you.

  8. Copped a fractured ankle on the 1st day of xmas holidays when I was about 12 or so , 24 hr wait before I was finally hauled off to Barringtons…..ouch !…and yup, all good by school time..ripped off or wot ? ( only ever broken wind since tk fk )

  9. I know what you mean: I broke a collar bone 30 years ago trying to do an Evel Knievel on my Raleigh Grifter. I’ve heard experts say that one cannot recall pain, but I can recall the sleepless agonising nights and sweating with pain.

  10. I’ve fractured my skull, broken my left elbow, right forearm, right thumb, both little fingers, two ribs, both knees, right ankle, and big toe on my left foot (those are the ones I know about). They hurt like the dickens but have the advantage of being able to predict cold weather.

  11. Broken thigh, long time ago now. Had it in traction for months -suspended from the hospital ceiling. It was well on the mend until I slipped out of the bed and yanked it all apart again. I don’t remember the pain at all funny enough, although I was sure I was going to limp for the rest of my life. Now that I think about it- I’m even unsure which leg it was -how do you forget something like that?

  12. Was hoping i’d never have reason to come back to this post, but as of this week can add a fractured fibula to the list!

    Had the pleasure of a 5’10” CUH trolley for 12 hours, which isn’t fun when you’re 6’1″ with your ankle hanging off the end. I resorted to grabbing one of those hospital food tables on wheels – carefully located it at end of the trolley with a stolen pillow on board to provide some extended elevation, and stared ruefully at any HSE staff that happened to pass. One doctor commented that it was quite inventive as he strolled by!

    Have to say it was great care once past that part, plated and pinned etc, but seems it’s de rigeur to do the corridor bit first. 6 weeks of plastered frustration now, aargh.

  13. Mick. Its a very sad reflection on our system that you had your suffering and discomfort increased by what, in my opinion is total ineptitude within our Health system.
    I had a couple of horrific experiences Hospital wise, lots of fractures etc and kept on morphine for almost 3 days due to a ” work to rule ” after that experience and emergency surgery due to approaching kidney failure ( i have 1 kidney ! ) i vowed to never ever return to a general A&E in this Country.
    I have a fairly low level Health Insurance, Level 2, so when i had an emergency in May i went to the A&E dept at the Galway Clinic, it took 10 mins to register and take my details, i was then put in a big spacious cubicle and 10 mins later i saw the Doctor who immediatly gave me meds and a referral to a Surgeon, I have had my Surgery in the same place and all well.
    Granted, due to my own personal experiences and those of some members of my family, i have made Health Ins a major priority, not without sacrifice but it has turned out to be well worth it in the past year.
    My point is though, if it can be done so efficiently in one Hospital then it can be done efficiently across the board.

  14. FFI. If only all injuries were equal !
    Dont know what IMO means…and i thought i was “down with the kids ! “

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