My husband rode Saddle Bronc horses as a professional rodeo cowboy for almost 10 years. For the past six years he has still rode off and on. With my work schedule, and his work schedule, he probably went to 20 rodeos or so last year. When rodeo was his only source of income, he would travel to 125 some years. Does it scare me? No. Weird, huh? I guess because I was around it before Otey, or maybe because of my confidence in his skill level, I just have never worried about him getting hurt. Now that you have a little background, here’s how my weekend went….
Satuday night 9:30pm
Hey! How did you do?
Shoot. What happened?
I tried REALLY hard to get bucked off of a good one and finally got it done right before the whistle. (that’s a little cowboy sarcasm for you… of course he didn’t really want to get bucked off… the object of Bronc Riding is to stay on a good one for eight seconds).
Oh, I’m sorry babe. Are you guys headed home?
Ya, after I got bucked off, I got stepped on.
Oh. You okay?
Ya. I hurt my leg. (very nonchalant) The trainers here said I might have broke the little bone.
Are you okay?
Ya. (very nonchalant again) I got to go, they are waiting on me… I’ll see you in the morning.
Okay. Love you.
Love you too.
When I went to bed around midnight I texted Otey and jokingly told him to take some Alieve and make one of those kids drive him home. “Those kids” were three other 25ish year old cowboys that he rode to Cleveland, Ohio with. That’s where he was leaving. Cleveland, Ohio. 12 hours from home.
Sunday morning 8:00am
Hey Babe. Where you at?
I’ve picked the truck up in Williamsburg, and I’m about 1.5 hours from home. (he had parked his truck at the interstate Friday night when he met those kids to go to the rodeo. Now he was back in his truck, and driving the last 1.5 hours home by himself)
Okay. Leave the truck running when you get here, because the boys and I are going to be leaving for church about the time that you get in.
Okay. See you in a little bit.
Hey. I’m coming down the hill. I might need you to come out and help me get in the house.
I then thought, this is a little bigger deal than I thought. When I got out to his truck, I opened the door and he looked like doo-doo (nice description, huh?) and was sitting there with one shoe on, and one shoe off. He could hardly turn side ways for me to help him out of the truck. We then somehow managed to get him hopped in to the couch and that is where he stayed until this morning. He did get up a couple of times to pee. The first time we used the hopping with my assistance technique, and then I ran out to his boss’s house and borrowed some crutches for him. I don’t know how he made it home in so much pain. If his left leg touches anything he nearly has a stroke.
This morning I called an Orthopedic Office in Des Moines and they of course fit him right in. Normal people just don’t understand how rodeo people work. Injuries are just part of the job description and that’s how cowboy’s treat them. If it’s not going to kill you, it can wait until Monday morning and HECK NO we aren’t going to an emergency room. I need to back up a little farther… okay, a lot farther. In 1999 Otey broke both of the bones in his lower left leg and had to go through MAJOR surgery to install a rod and several screws. That rod (which sets off the freakin’ alarm at every airport we go to) goes all the way from his knee to his ankle.
In the same leg that just got stepped on.
After leaving Cooper at daycare for the day and making arrangements for him in case we didn’t make it back to pick him up, Otey, Grady and I headed to the Doctor. The final verdict is that Otey’s leg is indeed broke. Not the little bone, but the big bone.
Notice the rod and screws in the x-ray (Otey was ready to shoot me when I busted out the iPhone camera the second the doctor left the room). The big bone that the rod runs through is broke, but the rod is still there, and looks like it’s where it’s supposed to be. The doctor was concerned that maybe the old fracture never really healed, so after the xray, they sent us to the hospital for a CT scan. CT? Is that right? Anyway… this test is going to show what bone is old bone and what bone is new bone so we can get a game plan. Otey’s Mom is overnighting the x-rays from 1999 and we will go back to Des Moines on Friday for the doc to examine all the info and tell us what’s next. I have to tell you I have a great husband. He has been in excruciating pain for two days and still finds the energy to make me laugh. When we pulled up to the hospital this evening poor little Grady had finally fallen asleep. I thought it would probably be best for Grady if he and I stayed in the truck while Otey went in for the scan.
Do you want me to go in with you, or do you think I should just sit in the truck and let Grady sleep?
You can’t go in the room with me for the scan.
I know… but do you want me to go and sit with you in the waiting room… or am I annoying you?
I don’t care… whatever you want to do.
Well… which is going to annoy you less…. Me going in and talking to you a lot, or me not going in with you and sitting in the truck?
I would say they both will annoy me equally.
You would think after six years you would be immune to my annoyingness.
Don’t worry babe. I’m sure you’ll keep coming up with new ways to annoy me.
Gosh I love that man. Even doped up on pain pills, hobbling around on crutches he can get a little digger in. I’ll update you on “broken leg version 2009” on Friday.
Sidenote… for those of you requesting the Chicken Spaghetti recipe that I mentioned yesterday… I hear ya… soon.
Tanya - You are in our thoughts and prayers. One of the ladies I work with Bonnie Hayes, I guess has known Otey since he was little and she was devasted to hear he might have broken his leg again. I will pass this along.
kay - So sorry to hear about Otey breaking his leg! I didn’t know Dan when his calf horse flipped in the box at a rodeo and he suffered a compound fracture to his leg. I was with him at the rodeo where the arena was full of rocks and he rolled his ankle running down the rope and broke his ankle in 2 places (same leg). We had a new 2 ton truck that I had never driven and Dan didn’t trust me to drive us home. So he drove us home pushing in on the clutch with a broke ankle. When we got home he wouldn’t let me wake up his folks to keep the kids so we could go to the ER so we waited ’til they got up! These cowboys! sheesh! Now, if I remember correctly back around 1990 we were going to jackpot ropings in Salem, Mo and Otey was roping with a cast on his leg then… Ask him sometime if that was him or not. My memory ain’t that great anymore… the only thing I can retain is water!
Kim - I love you two:)