Alan Katz

First post: Dec 30, 2018 Latest post: Jan 25, 2019

December 27, 2018

Welcome to my CaringBridge website. I am using it to keep  friends updated in one place. I appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting. 

12:15 AM, on the morning of Monday, December 17, 2018, while walking down the the front steps of my house -- my right leg slipped; causing me to come down as hard as I possibly could, with the full weight of my body, on my right hip;  I saw stars. Determined to get my things from my car, I hobbled get my last load from a weekend trip to Massachusetts; and back to my house and out of the rain. By this time, my hip had swelled and hurt terribly, so I  grabbed a canoe paddle to use as a crutch. In excruciating pain, I managed to down 2 Ibuprofen and 2 natural sleeping pills, before finally falling asleep, after 4:00 AM. I've had more than my fair-share of injuries resulting from accidents; including the time my femur was broken into 25 pieces in a car accident. The pain I felt following this fall, doesn't come close. I've heard it said,  hip injuries tend to be extremely painful. I can now say from personal experience, this is true.

Up by 8:00 AM and truly unable to walk, I thought I'll just call a home-aide service, to help me for a few days -- until I can walk again on my own. When the nurse replied as if I was crazy -- and after talking with my girlfriend Joan; I finally decided to call an ambulance. The two men who came, had to carry me from my bed. After spending most of the day, getting X-Rays and a CAT Scan; and experiencing much pain, moving to and from the scanning tables -- the doctor told me I had fractured my acetabulum; a hip socket bone. By this time, the thought of people waiting on me, sounded pretty good. Unfortunately, the hospital would not allow me to spend even one night. After some quick lessons on use of a walker and crutches by a physical therapist; they kicked me out -- and Joan picked me up.

The following day, Joan drove me to the Orthopedic doctor, who told me, I had a hairline fracture of my  acetabulum. The top ball part of the femur (that big bone in your leg above the knee), swivels in the acetabulum (the socket part of the hip). I was told to keep my weight off my right leg for a month. The "good" news is, the break wasn't more severe, and that my hip was not knocked out of place. If it was, surgery would of been required. Now I'm counting the days till my next appointment; January 16 -- afterwards, it's my hope I will be able to drive. After seeing Dr. Avallone, we were off to Wegman's for some groceries -- lots of frozen dinners that are easy to make.

At this point, I am hobbling around my house, with a walker; where it seems, things take 5 times as long to accomplish -- and some things I cannot do at all, unless I get help. People who know me well, know I cannot sit still for very long -- and I hate having to ask others for help. There are some times in life though, you really need to let go of some long held baggage. Personally, I can think of better ways to become enriched by a trying experience  :-(

I'm thankful, the excruciating pain is gone. As long as I don't twist my body in an extreme way, or strongly jostle my right leg -- I'm not in pain. And I don't dare even test to put my weight on my right side, even though it might  be okay to do so.  I'm also thankful for the visits by Joan and her daughter Jen; and Ziona -- and the many well wishes received so far. After several days with a "stripped" walker, I ordered a couple of storage holders; a tray and cushioned hand grips. These items arrived today, and have made getting around easier.

Part of getting over this thing about asking for help, involved me putting the word out, early on, about my injury. With so many folks now writing back, asking how I'm doing -- this CaringBridge site will make updating folks easier. By 12/22, I no longer had to scoot my butt to the end of the bed to stand up. Instead, I was able to move first my left, and then very slowly, my right leg, off the side. On 12/24, I was daring enough to take my first shower since the accident -- by myself! I just happen to have a shower stool, which made this process, relatively easy. I will continue to note milestones, along my journey to full recovery. Any encouraging thoughts and words of support (see Well Wishes) you might offer, will be welcomed and appreciated -- and displayed here on this website.

Before closing this first entry, back to the time I shattered my leg into 25 pieces. For four long months, I was placed in traction. My mom, Peggy, visited me every day -- bringing a milkshake every time. I learned later, she put a raw egg in every shake. Before my discharge from the hospital, I was fitted with a very fancy leg brace -- one that could be locked at the knee. At the time, my orthopedic doctor didn't say anything about rehab, or exercise -- not a word. Once again, my mom knew just what to do -- to the pool it was for me every day. I recollect after a week with the brace, and just a few days with crutches -- I was able to walk completely unassisted. Now 39 years after this very serious injury, I'm faced with a similar physical challenge -- and know with proper diet, exercise, optimism, and support from my friends; I will recover just as well, as I did back in 1979. Thank you for reading my story -- and thanks in advance, for any comforting words you might be able to offer in my time of need.

Alan Katz

90 Glen Avenue - Apt. A
Phillipsburg, NJ. 08865



In later entries, in addition to updates on my recovery, I plan to share some things about my brother Michael, and his struggle with mental illness; the very difficult and ongoing fight I've had with my sisters over the estate of our mom, and a huge difference of opinion, over Michael's care; and my Quality and Role Awareness Idea (QRAI) Cards -- a team building kit I created over 17 years ago. These things I know, will be of particular interest, to those individuals I've lost touch with.