This story is to say thanks to all who have been and supported me before and after the accident. This story is to share my experience with all who need that kind of support, good word and mental power to fight the injury. And finally this story is for me and me only - as a reminder how much strength I have hidden inside. For last 4 years climbing was all my life. Being at my early 30thies, working at gaming industry and finding time for 3-hour training everyday, was more then complicated. However, there was no excuse, no force to keep me away from climbing. Was feeling strong and unbreakable ;)
During one competition I fell off a pretty high boulder. I still remember seconds before my fall. It was silly position, I was hanging upside down and just wanted to reach to the top with my hands. Then I lost it. Luckily landed on both feet but I guess the surface was wavy and fall was too hard. My knee couldn’t take it. Huge pain. Ambulance was there quite fast. I couldn’t move my knee at all. “Please don’t let it to be broken” was in head the whole time. Paramedics and doctors didn’t spare me from ‘smart’ comments such as I shouldn’t climb so high. Injuries .. broken tibia, ACL torn in two, both LCL and MCL badly injured, cracked meniscus - all in one fall. They said that I MIGHT be able to climb after 1 year but it’s not gonna be anything like before this accident. Was not so strong and unbreakable any more. To be honest I couldn’t stop crying for couple hours.
Next days were bad. There was so much anger and sadness mixed up. I knew there is no way I stop climbing just had to find MY OWN way to fight for it. I googled the whole Internet for the right reconstruction method. Chose one and let doctors reconstruct my knee and my hopes : ) After waiting for my broken tibia to heal docs transplanted ACL and after 2 days I was back home. I stopped climbing for only 5 days after the operation. Modified my whole training. Leaving my crutches by the wall and climbing one-legged on over-hanged walls. Days were all the same. Morning physical therapy for my leg at the surgery. Evening climbing with one leg, top-rope campus and all other different ways to keep me moving. My knee brace was giving me hard time too.
I’m not gonna lie.. doctors and rehab people didn’t even wanted to hear about me climbing. It was strictly forbidden. I decided not to stop climbing and took all the responsibility for my actions. It probably looked easy.. the girl is climbing with one leg. The truth was that I was climbing with one leg and additional 50 kilos of worries in my head, ‘be careful, no.. don’t twist it, don’t bump it on the wall.. hold on, what was that pain.. etc.’
Rule #1 of recovery: Do what makes YOU happy :) So I did.
That is how the months were passing by.. and here is the most important thing. From the very beginning my friends and the closest people were with me. Giving the support I needed. Spending their time, trying to find the way for the best training for me, as well as keeping me from going too hard. Helpful hand, cheering words or just a smile, all that kept me moving.
After placing some pics of me climbing in knee brace on ILOVECLIMBING I started receiving messages from people around the world who suffered similar injuries with questions or just with best wishes. It’s a great feeling that you can help somebody just by sharing your experience !!
I know I’m only half way now ..but with such friends and support recovery is just a matter of time. Climbers society is great. You couldn’t wish for better companions, friends and people you can rely on. Climbing requires devotion, time and patience but it gives so much in return. And in the end it teaches us how to be strong and unbreakable – literally and mentally.