There's a saying we throw around, usually after a late night...
"Man, I feel like I got hit by a truck."
On Halloween 2015, a Ford 250 Pick up truck hit me dead on.
Yep, that's my bone sticking out.
Time really does slow down, and fracture- in the same way the body does.
It was a beautiful fall morning, I was on my bike riding home from a Pilates mat class on a quiet tree-lined street in the South End of Boston.
A truck driving in the opposite direction made a sudden left hook turn and drove right into me.
My Shoulder/Arm Fracture
In the second before the truck hit me, I remember seeing the grill way up close and then BAM! I was flying thru the air and landed on the ground several feet away.
In a single moment, the chessboard of my body was thrown into the air - each piece disrupted, floating, its story intersected.
I was mangled and intertwined with my now very broken bike. Thankfully there was a witness who ran over to me (as well as the driver of the truck) to see if I was alive.
A 911 call was made.
I remember hearing an ambulance, a fire truck.
Minutes later I was surrounded by cops, firemen, EMTs and the woman who found me.
I began to become vaguely aware that I was in fact still in a body.
but I could not move.
My life orbits around movement. My gravity was taken from me.
There was blood on my head from where I smacked it on the pavement. I was put into a neck brace and loaded onto a gurney and into the ambulance.
I was admitted into the emergency room with multiple fractures, a posteriorly dislocated shoulder, bruises, cuts, and abrasions.
They needed to give me anesthesia in order to relocate my shoulder, so I wasn't allowed to eat. Unfortunately, there wasn't a doctor available to do that for over 29 hours! I had to wait for a specialty surgeon since posterior dislocation is difficult to relocate.
I was in the hospital for two days and suffered a scapular spine fracture, a fracture of the humerus, bursitis of the knee, and a bruised sacrum.
I couldn't dress or go to the bathroom by myself.
I was in more pain than I'd ever been in my life.
Once I was released from the hospital, I was made to wear a sling with a large foam attachment to keep my shoulder and arm in the proper posotion to heal. I was home for over three months and couldn't dress or groom myself, shower, cook or eat without help.
I couldn't do what I was born to do, help other people live more fully in their own bodies.
I had to ask other trainers to see my clients and relied on my business partner to take over my half of running the gym.
I remember sitting on the stoop and waiting for a stranger to come to help me open a can of dog food to feed my dog Millie.
When the trajectory of our life is disrupted, we get to pause... reflect, metabolize, and reinvent.
I went to see an orthopedic specialist weekly to decide whether or not surgery was needed. My weekly progress was slow but positive.
After 3 months of being home and out of work the doctor decided I did not need surgery (horray!) and that I could start physical therapy. It was a very scary time as I couldn't move my arm. My knee and hip constantly ached.
I was in mental and physical atrophy.
I began seeing a physical therapist, a orthopedic massage therapist, an acupuncturist, chiropractor, naturopath and several corrective exercise specialists to help heal my body and mind.
After several months I began to slowly reclaim pieces of my former life, the one that orbited movement.
But, I couldn't walk the dog without fear of her pulling my arm, couldn't hand dumbbells to my clients, and I feared getting bumped into while walking down the street.
It is always possible to be broken, and still whole.
been through stuff too? Of course you have. Do you need an expert, empathetic and genuinely experienced approach?
Two years later, the work isn't over - but the view has shifted.
Two years after the accident my husband and I moved to Arizona for the weather and the slower resort-style life in the valley.
Almost three years later and my path to recovery has been slow, un-paved, and littered with potholes, but a road none-the-less.
So far I have worked with rotator cuff tendonitis, have an unstable pelvis that slips out regularly, a knee that always clicks and a SLAP tear in my shoulder.
The practitioners that I have been blessed to work with have helped me to gain increased range of motion in spite of these developments but there are still some things I unfortunately can no longer do.
I've created a new normal.
I have traded kettle bell swings and heavy deadlifts for Pilates, barre, yoga and meditation. I concentrate more on functional and corrective exercise and I continue to learn more and more about how to train post rehabilitation.
I've become an passionate expert in corrective exercise, and functional movement.
Life closed one door.
Well, life technically slammed a door.
But this world is full of windows.
I focus on what I can do rather than what I can't.
I embrace all I have overcome and all I have achieved.
Most importantly, I understand impermanence.
I am uniquely focused on providing accessible, therapeutically-minded personal training, yoga & movement.
I am so fortunate to be able to help & support people working with injuries and limitations.
I specialize in training people with:
Interest in corrective exercise
Postnatal personal training
Ready to move with more Joy & ease?
Jenn Menzer, Corrective Exercise Specialist
I have now become the corrective exercise specialist and combined my 17 certifications and 15+ years experience to help you overcome your unique obstacles.
Everyone has their own big red truck.
It does get better. I can help you find new pathways to balance and wellness!