A couple of days before Thanksgiving in 2009, I was practicing a dance for my second play audition with Playhouse 395. I did something that I knew I shouldn’t have and I started practicing the dance without stretching. Never ever do that. I learned the hard way. The last few steps of the dance required me to kneel down into a lunge. As I started to kneel, I felt the worse pain in my leg that I have ever had in my life. I lied on my floor crying without tears, holding back the urge to scream out in pain. I held the scream because it was 11 o’clock at night and I live around quite a few elderly people. I didn’t want to wake anybody.
It took me what felt like a lifetime to slowly crawl to my chair where my phone was and I managed, somehow, to get seated in my chair. I called my mom and asked her to come over because I thought I did something to my leg. The pain was unbearable and at first I thought that I must have either tore a muscle completely in half or I broke my leg. When both my parents got to my apartment I didn’t hesitate to have them take me to the hospital. I hate doctors so if I offer to be seen by one I really must be in pain. I’ve always seemed to be the type of person that is more willing to let my body do what it is going to do than see a doctor. I think it might be because I’ve had a couple of doctors tell me that my stomach aches were all in my head when it turns out that I’m lactose intolerant and have Celiac Disease.
The doctor at the hospital told me that I had massively strained and slightly ruptured my left quad. It is one of the big muscles on the top of your hamstring (I think). I was told that I have to be on crutches for at least a week and had to wrap my leg in a bandage and keep ice on it. Working at a bank while being on crutches was interesting. The most interesting experience was going through Disneyland.
When we arrived I had a cast member offer me a ride in the short bus (yes it was a short bus, let the jokes fly) to take me into the park instead of on the tram. I tripped getting into the bus and my mom got to ride with me as my brother and dad rode the tram. We got a wheelchair and my second-cousin, Chelsea, fell in love with it. We kept calling it an adult stroller. My dad pushed me around and Chelsea sat on my lap most of the time. Going through Disneyland in a wheelchair and on crutches gave me a new perspective of Disneyland. The cast members talked to the person in the wheelchair not the one pushing it. I got to go through the handicap line and we even got a cast member in trouble for being rude to us.
Being in the wheelchair didn’t allow me to move around all that much and as night fell, I got really cold and could not warm up. I don’t think I went on Big Thunder Mountain that day and I think that was the first time that I didn’t get to go on the ride. I was afraid of what it might do to my leg since it’s a rollercoaster. I got to have fun with a few of the characters and I have loved Winnie-the-Pooh since I was a little kid. Tigger saw me on the crutches and I told him that I bounced a little too much.
After a week I was off the crutches but limping really bad. The muscle in my leg still hurts from time to time and I just ice it and take it easy. I now know exactly how important it is to stretch before doing anything as strenuous as dancing can be. I am thankful to Disneyland for the treatment I was given during my trip there while being mobile-challenged.