Friday, March 2, 2012

Wounded Warrior

Those of you who have been following my Facebook posts over the last several weeks know that I was wounded in the battle called Chicago Winter - I slipped on ice, fell, and broke my right wrist. My write/right wrist and lower arm are currently ensconced in their fourth cast/splint. But things are improving - this particular cast is plastic, removable, and allows for occupational therapy to start immediately. All this means I should be as good as new . . . sometime.

Since I'm also working on a middle school project about the Bataan Death March and Cabanatuan prisoner of war camp, I cannot help but compare my medical incident and accompanying care with what must have been 100s of like and worse wounds and breaks than I suffered. These men would not have had the advantages of a taxi to the ER, or in many cases, even a doctor. They were forced to march 80 miles and were executed if they faltered.

Photo Credit: National Museum of the Air Force

I know the disfigurement of my wrist post-break; I had 7 hours in the ER to stare at it before it was set and splinted. I also know that while I had pain (I'd say 500 out of 10), I was given pain medication to ease my torment. I would venture to say that any wounded soldier on Bataan fortunate to only have an arm fracture kept his mouth shut and his feet moving lest he be deemed too damaged to continue and summarily killed. I suspect that men with broken legs or backs kept themselves as upright as possible in order to take even one more step.

I write this entry to put my wrist into perspective, to put a lot of my life into perspective. I often fear that I take for granted the simple and expedient ways to "fix" my life, to make myself more comfortable. Perhaps I can recall this post the next time I complain about being out of Motrin, or having to walk to the bus in the rain, or yes, even the battle I call winter.

No comments:

Post a Comment