The day that I catastrophically injured my shoulder last May was one of the hardest days of my life; I still remember vividly how I could barely move without crying out in pain. See, in the year and a half before that I had dedicated my athletic life to lifting heavy weights, and I was finally set to have a killer showing at two national level competitions. It was an exciting time for me, but I didn’t even realize that an injury from my high school hockey days was ready to rear its ugly head. The constant instability of my shoulder had become a fact of life, one that I never thought twice about, but that made me work harder to get stronger so that I could compensate for it. When my labrum and bicep tore, I didn’t know what to do or where to turn. Thank God I was sent straight to you.
You took my pain very seriously, and you quickly learned what my long-term athletic goals were so that you could recommend the exact right treatment for me. You knew I wanted to get back to lifting heavy weights over my head, and your treatment plan respected that desire. Somehow, I left your office that first day feeling confident that my strongman career was not over, and that you would get me back on track. To be fair, there is a great amount of credit that goes to your caring support staff as well. Not only were they compassionate, but they were funny, honest, and authentic people. It was as if I had been pulled into this cozy nest of support and I was surrounded by genuine warmth and care.
So we operated and fixed the tear. You never shied away from telling the truth about what was happening or what was going to come next. You let me cry in front of you. You let me rejoice in front of you. And you knew just when I needed to hear, “You’re so strong!” Thank you for all of that.
We are now 9 months out from surgery and I just competed for the first time since the injury. Going back to my favorite sport has brought me so much joy, and guess what…I’m stronger than I was before. Did you do something while you were in there to make me stronger? It’s ok, you can keep your secrets on that one. I’m already qualified to go to nationals in June, and it’s looking pretty good for me to be a solid competitor while I’m there.
Thank you for everything, to you and your staff. I’ll make you proud come June…promise.