Monthly Archives: January 2016

12 things I learned when my partner broke both his arms

12 things I learned when my partner broke both his arms

  1. When your partner arrives home from A+E with two broken arms you will experience many different emotions such as shock, horror, fear, sadness and a cold sinking sensation as the words ‘toilet’ ‘wipe’ and ‘arse’ come into your head.
  2. The first question other people will ask is, ‘how did he do it?’ and the second is, ‘how will he go to the toilet and wipe his arse?’
  3. A children’s extending plastic toy hand with moveable fingers can help when you are the one who has to solve the problem of how he will go to the toilet and wipe his arse.
  4. The stronger the painkillers, the more unpredictable the effects will be. Suddenly, Bargain Hunt will become hilariously funny. Sometimes nothing will become hilariously funny. Don’t be selfish with the tablets however, it’s your partner that’s in agonising pain after all. If you’re very lucky, they will bung things up nicely for them and you won’t need the toy hand.
  5. If you accompany your partner to any hospital visits, be sure to knock on ward toilet doors before you try the handle. You could find yourself face to face with other people’s bowel dilemmas, although it is refreshing to learn that in an emergency you can poo standing up.
  6. If you don’t have a speaker phone facility, you can avoid arm fatigue from holding the phone to your partner’s ear by wedging it into a strategically positioned headband.
  7. Brushing someone else’s teeth is both surprisingly difficult yet strangely satisfying. It can also foster a new level of intimacy as you discover more fillings than you’d seen whilst snogging and find out they don’t usually do behind their own front gnashers.
  8. Your strengths and weaknesses will emerge in one fell swoop. I discovered I’m good at high level creative thinking, multi-tasking and presenting a stoic consistent level of care without moaning. On the down side, I’m inexplicably shit at putting the bins out. Every time I did it, calamities occurred including not being able to unlock the alley, cutting my thumb, and getting trapped in said alley.
  9. Don’t go on a brave massive shopping trip alone and then believe the taxi company when they say the cab will be at Tesco car park in ten minutes. Despite several more furious and desperate phone calls you could still be there one and a half hours later while your incapacitated partner is starving at home. Don’t then assume the best plan is to wheel the trolley to the road to get a black cab. No matter what the Tesco assistant says, you cannot get the trolley up the corrugated ramp and you will invariably get stuck. Make sure a neighbour is available for immediate rescue purposes. You should then start shopping on-line because a few bruised bananas, stingy sell-by dates and substitutions are well worth it to avoid this perilous debacle until your partner can drive again.
  10. When taxis do arrive in a timely fashion, you may be surprised to learn that 90% of drivers make very good crisis counsellors. They will display excellent empathy, although it may be delivered with swearing. The other 10% don’t talk at all which can be just as good sometimes.
  11. The day your partner can go to the toilet alone and wipe their own arse is cause for jubilant phone calls to friends and family, delighted Facebook status updates and general unbridled celebration in the street. By now you will be amazed at how normal it is to discuss these matters in public.
  12. Life and the human body are fragile but also amazing. You can break both of your arms, be rescued by ambulance, have your arms reconstructed with metal bits and in a few months, they will work again!