Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Near Crisis

This will have to be a short post because the battery on Deacon Chris's laptop is about to die.

I wanted to post about perhaps the scariest thing to happen to me in a long time. Believe it or not it involves volleyball.

I was playing volleyball with the students yesterday, which is an everyday occurrence. These kids love volleyball; they absolutely eat it up. They would play all day if they could, and they are very good. I was playing up on the net and I jumped to spike the ball but it was further back than I realized. As I pulled my arm back and thrust it forward I heard a pop, and a sharp pain. As I reached for my shoulder I felt a gap between my arm and my shoulder. I had dislocated my shoulder. It was one of the strangest feelings of my life, and it hurt A LOT!

Luckily Tyler was there and he helped me back towards the parish house where we live. As we were walking I knelt down because of the pain, I used my other arm to lift the dislocated one to about parallel with the ground and gave it a little push. Much to my relief it popped back in! This was honestly a miracle. I am over an hour by jeep from the nearest doctor, and who knows what kind of training that doctor has. It was one of the scariest moments of my life.

I popped a bunch of Ibuprofen and lied down for a while. I think it is going to be okay, but I won't be playing volleyball for at least a week.

Everything else is going well. The teaching is really fun, and the students are enthusiastic. I drank fermented milk, which is like yogurt, for the first time today. Hopefully I won't puke!

Tanzanian Fun Fact: The people of Tanzania are extremely poor, but they have softer toilet paper than the University of Notre Dame, which has a $5 billion endowment.


  1. oh my gosh, if that happened to me I wouldn't be able to post it because my mom would probably fly to africa in hysterics... Glad it popped back in!

  2. I'm going to skip over the part about the arm and move straight to the Fun Fact. It doesn't surprise me, considering that Target has softer toilet paper than SU, which has about a $50 million dollar endowment. While I do realize this is 1% of your endownment, when you compare the school sizes, it probably equals out.

  3. I'll be the motherly one to say that you should be careful because once it has popped out before it gets easier and easier for it to happen over and over. I guess I am learning something at school :)

  4. Hi. I'm Stacy. Okay, there... it's established. Tim told me to sign up for this blog and I agreed as it appears very amusing!
    I have one pointer for ya and agree with the last post. So, yeah... it does become very easy to dislocate once you do it once. I would be careful over the next few weeks and do some exercises for the rotator cuff. That being said, if it does dislocate again and you don't have access to a doctor, one fix is to lay on a table on your stomach. Hang your arm off the table and apply 10 lbs of sand bags or other weight to the wrist and let the arm hang freely. Make sure the arm is relaxed. This can distract the muscles and relax them, allowing it to go back in place. If it does nothing after 10 minutes... sorry! But I imagine you'll be fine without further shoulder probs anyways. And BTW, sometimes doctors get xrays with dislocations because there can be an associated fracture. Just so you know... if your shoulder worsens it may need to be examined. If in doubt, check it out.