This last couple of months have sucked. I want to thank those that expressed concern over my absence from the blog and assure everybody that I'll be back on the dirt later this week.
At the beginning of August I had an accident (that part is unsurprising) which resulted in what is called a "Tripod Fracture". The Tripod Fx is a heavy duty facial injury most commonly associated with a crushing blow to the cheek bone (think: bar fight) in which three facial bones are fractured (see red highlights below). I wish I had been in the bar fight, at least I could have gotten some licks in. Sadly, my story is less dramatic, bordering on the mundane. I got tangled up with the dog while working in the garage. He went one way and I went over him the other way and in the process I did my best to break my wife's Infinity with my head. I contacted the drivers side rear-view mirror with my cheek. Infinity makes superior car mirrors.
The recovery from this has been long and at times miserable. Initially, my face was swollen up so bad I could scarcely open my left eye. I had spectacular bruising to the left side of my face. At the time of injury I had been nearly knocked out and over subsequent days I had post-concussion syndrome (headaches, headaches, nausea and more headaches). Of course, this was all compounded by the facial injury and instability of the cheek... very painful. I experienced bony crepitus in the form of creaks and pops to the sinus (unpleasant). The CT Scan of my head also showed a large quantity of blood in my left maxillary sinus which took a while to either drain (as bloody post-nasal drip) or reabsorb.
A few weeks ago, long after I thought that I should be feeling better, I experienced a change in my symptoms. The headache returned with a vengeance my eye blackened up again, and my fractures again felt unstable. In a word...hell. After my headache had worsened for the fourth straight day I was concerned enough to go get scanned again and revisited the appropriate specialists (I don't recommend ever letting a doctor scope your sinus). Naturally, I'd developed sinusitus and a sinus infection. This can be a serious problem: think fractured bony sinus, with an infection that can get between the crack and go to the brain. This is a problem that should never be ignored and I wound up on more narcotics and antibiotics.
Let's see, what else happened... After the initial injury I was starting to feel better and went bouldering with Dave Rivas on 09/11 and got a bad case of contact poison oak from handling some of his gear. So add a round of steroids to the misery.
In the midst of all this I've managed to complete (and personally did 70% of the work) a house remodel: brand new kitchen, brand new laundry room, and a host of upgrades to the rest of the house. My home, at least the inside of it could model for a Pottery Barn catalog.
So, with all this bullshit I have either not had the time or not felt well enough to enjoy being outside since mid-summer. I have run out of things to fix around the house, I'm feeling outa shape and soft, and I'm eager to get back to "normal". I think I'm good to go, so I look forward to doing some local exploring in the coming weeks.
Again, I'd like to thank those of you kind friends that wondered if ole Crash Stillman had actually managed to remove himself from this mortal coil. The Devil ain't got me yet!
Ortega Hill and Ortega Peak
1 week ago