It’s been just over two weeks since I finished my tea and grabbed a slice of cheesecake to eat in front of the tv. As I bent down to sit, my left knee gave way under me as my kneecap dislocated. I can’t describe the pain that ensued, but if I had to choose between that again or childbirth, I’d take the latter.

Unluckily all round there had been an RTA locally, meaning my screams went on for a good two hours before help arrived. Morphine and gas and air took the edge off, but after an hour of trying to push my patella back into place, it was time to take me to hospital. After being dislocated for a good three and a half hours, I finally had a reduction, which helped with the pain massively. 

After an X-ray, I was fixed up with a brace, crutches and sent on my merry way! A few days later, I attended the fracture clinic, who took a look at my knee and said to stick with the brace for another couple of weeks. Some physiotherapy will be arranged too, but so far I’ve not heard anything about that.

Now I know there are people in a far worse situation, but life with a full leg brace and crutches takes a bit of getting used to. There have been tears, more from frustration than pain.  We take so much for granted!

My allotment friend, Sue, has been amazing and has even recruited others to help out on my plot. They have been nothing short of brilliant in taking the edge of the colossal amount of tasks that seem to have built up.

The time came though when I decided to evict the rest of the seedlings from the house and make my way up to the plot. When greeted with so much in flower, I was reminded of the peace and happiness that the allotment brings.

Making my way tentatively to the greenhouse, I began making a mental note for allotment improvements. The first one is to make the paths wider. I’ve no shortage of space, so this shouldn’t be a problem. Secondly, the ground is uneven in places; when I can, it would be a good idea to level out the lumps.

With a fair amount of shuffling about, I managed to plant rows of lettuce, tomatoes and beets. Also, some potting on in the greenhouse, oh and a row of peas!

It seems as though recovery may be a fairly lengthy process, so I’ve been thinking about how I’m going to get through and still be as productive as possible:

  • I’ll be taking little and often to a new level
  • Take things slow when I’m doing them
  • Have one main task planned for each visit even if it’s something small like water the greenhouse
  • Learn to accept help a little more graciously

The main change, though, and one that I have been experimenting with already is to switch to the no dig method. If this isn’t the push to switch entirely, then I don’t know what is! So, when I’m not at the plot, I’ll be planning my new pathways and researching the no dig and composting. There is always plenty to be getting on with.

Any top tips for managing an allotment with a leg injury appreciated.

Sarah.

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