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Trip to doctor to remove torn cartilage in right knee. 7/23/01

Signal Ridge Trail 8/12/01
I’ve played hockey all my life and never had a serious injury, besides stitches and a concussion. At 44 I still play twice a week. Well, when I was 42 I threw a cookout for one of my hockey teammates and managed a severe tear of the Miniscus in my right knee in an impromptu frisbee game in my backyard. Horror of horrors, this couldn’t be happening! Not now! I’m so close to being finished with my mountains! I knew right away I had torn the knee up good. I had torn the same knee up in a softball outfield collision about 8 years earlier. I was told then that I had a torn ACL according to the MRI they had taken. Well, instead of immediate surgery then, I decided the surgery was worse sounding than the injury, and opted to go with therapy and see how it responded. Within a few months without surgery I was back playing hockey with a brace and by midseason I was playing without it. But, this time I knew it was different. I could tell something broke. I didn’t bother with the emergency room as they would only tell me to see a specialist and send me home, so the next day I went to my Dr. who sent me to the specialist. After the initial exam I was scheduled for an immediate MRI and when the results of that were read and it was determined I had a severe tear of the Miniscus I was scheduled for surgery. A piece of cartilage had actually broken off and was wedged between the upper and lower bones of my leg. No wonder I couldn’t straighten out my leg! One of our hockey games was scheduled for the same day I had surgery, so that night, with my leg in a cast and feeling better than it had in several days, I drove myself over to hockey and wished I could play. I guess the leg felt so much better because it was all numbed up with novocaine. The next day as the novacaine began to wear off I began to feel the full impact of the surgery. Ow! I guess this was going to slow me down for a while. Funny thing, while he was looking around inside my knee the Dr. determined that my ACL was intact. Boy! Glad I didn’t have reconstructive surgery 8 years ago! Long before the accident I had planned a week of class at The Maine Photographic Workshops in Rockport, Maine. I managed to drive myself there and limp around the campus, and Camden and Rockport. It was at this school that Icame up with the plan for my final version of Ghostflowers, the book. Well, with 3 days a week therapy and by constant icing to get the swelling down and by doing the sets of exercises they gave me 3 times a day, I was back out hiking through Pawtuckaway State Park, then I accompanied Dan and Jude and Emma as far as I could make it as they hiked Signal Ridge Trail to the summit of Mount Carrigain. I made it in about 2 miles then gave up and took pictures as I took a leisurely stroll along the trail. There were many butterflies around and I had some success with them. The leg was getting better, and I was thinking it felt good enough to climb.
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Carrigain 8/9/08
Carrigain 8/24/03
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