Staying Smiling: Breaking My Wrist

On December 29, 2015, I broke my wrist.

I finished the noon CrossFit class, went to lunch with friends then went back to the gym to do another workout (we all had the day off and wanted to get some extra work in). I was warming up my squat cleans before we were going to start the workout (featuring heavy squat cleans). Felt fine at 80#, 90#, 100#. Then I tackled 105# once. Then 105# tackled me.

I was trying to catch the barbell after the lift but didn’t have it, held on a little too long and boom: barbell crashes on wrist, I run to bathroom so no-one would see me cry.

Well, people still saw me cry. I didn’t think I broke it (thought tendons or ligaments) so I iced it, got a ride home and was just going to take it easy. It wasn’t until I called Mama and Papa Honey Bee (who were out of town) that I went to the ER with my sister.

Amy broken wrist2

(PS. Most pics via Lesley’s SnapChat. She’s actually the little sister…)

I really didn’t think there was a chance of a break. I had it in my mind: no way, no how. In all my years of competitive basketball and other activities… I’d never broken anything. Sure a bunch of sprained ankles, fingers, a concussion here and there… but a break? Nadda.

Well, never say never. Yes: I broke both my radius and ulna, a Colle’s fracture.

Amy broken wrist4

I will spare you most of the hospital details but I must say that pulling the bones back into place hurt more than the actual break itself (the freezing didn’t work) and that I am very grateful for the amazing team at Humber River Hospital and my incredibly calm and supportive sister.

Amy broken wrist3

I’m writing this today cast-free (just a splint for a bit and lots of physio/rehab) pretty full of emotion and lessons learned.

When this happened, I thought my world had imploded. I had no use of my right hand or arm. I couldn’t do the simplest tasks (tying my shoes, putting up my hair). How would I be independent? I couldn’t chop vegetables, wash dishes. How would I service my Honey Bee Meals clients and feed myself? I couldn’t lift weights. How would I workout and feel strong? I couldn’t hold a clipboard and a marker. How would I draw out plays for the team?

Yes, I was sad. Yes, I was in pain. Yes, I was frustrated. Yes, 6 weeks in a cast and then the unknown when it came off sounded terrible and terrifying. But I didn’t let these feelings last.

My amazing family and friends helped me tie my shoes, braid my hair (and wash my hair, or else I wore a hat!) Some awesome additions to the Honey Bee team chopped and helped cook. Whole Foods hot bar helped to feed me. When the pain subsided, I went to the gym and became best friends with the air dyne and the safety squat bar. I figured out how to be a one-armed coach and still win games.

I figured out how to live my life because setbacks are temporary.

Amy broken wrist

Sure, there were still some days where I felt down, frustrated, regretful. Why did this happen to me? Why can’t I do anything? Why did I go back for workout #2 when I was tired and why didn’t I wear my wrist wraps? There were a few times when I was a complete misery and horrible to be around but the vast majority of the time I had a smile on my face because sometimes shit happens and we have to figure out how to deal with it and not sacrifice our happiness in the process.

I’m not sure when I’ll be able to do a squat clean again (still working on just regaining range of motion) but I am sitting here today promising that I will. With a smile on my face. And if/when something or someone gets you down, I hope you do too.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

How do you stay positive when something not-so-positive happens?

Have you ever broken anything?! 

14 thoughts on “Staying Smiling: Breaking My Wrist

  1. Staying positive is the biggest thing! I allowed myself to spiral into a deep hole of sadness when I hurt my foot and it was 8 weeks of doing nothing and being miserable. Keep a positive attitude and keep up your workouts- they will make you feel a lot better. Sending healing vibes your way!

  2. Ow ow owww! That sounds SO painful. I’ve never broken or fractured anything so I can’t imagine how much it would have hurt to break it AND have them set it back. Eek!

    I totally understand feeling sorry for yourself – as the exact same thoughts have gone through my head too. Whether i’ve been feeling down about an injury or my arm disability (which I’ve had all my life as a result of a birth injury), I too have those days where I feel pretty down and out. I think the most important thing what that happens is to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and realise that whilst it really sucks – the world hasn’t ended.

    We’ve just got to keep on going!

  3. I can’t even imagine how difficult this was for you lovely. So proud to see your positivity and smiles were there and you have learned so much from this! Life throws you curveballs you did great. I hope you get better and better and it heals well :)

    1. You are so sweet and I am so sorry we are so overdue for a catch up! I have loved following your Whole 30 journey and hope you are back to enjoying your super morning smoothies :)

  4. Hi Amy,
    I came across your blog searching the web for people that had the same problem as I do!
    I broke my left hand radius and ulna while doing a crossfit wod. I was performing toes to bar, and after 3 or 4 reps I slipped off the bar falling on my left hand. Well, yes I did it!
    Now, I have to wear a cast for 6 weeks( 4 more to go), and I experience exacly the same feelings as you did.
    I’m a little emotional of what will it happen after I remove my cast. I will do physio but will I be able to use my hand the way I used to? Wiil I be able to move my left wrist as the right one? Because I am determined to do toes to bar again! :)
    I hope you are well, and if you are and you do cf wods again, I will overcome easier this time of healing and come back in the gym.

Leave a Reply