Saturday, 23 August 2014

My Leg Fell Out Of Bed

My leg fell out of bed this morning. That  may sound a bit strange to those of you with normal legs; mine don't work like yours. Yet my legs, when I move about in bed, slide along with the shifting of my upper body.

When I go to bed at night, I transfer from my wheelchair to my bed. That transfer requires that I do a semi-stand with my arms, using the the M-rail on my bed and the wheel on my wheelchair as push points. I force myself up as far as I can then rotate sideways, slumping quickly on to my bed. This process has become increasingly difficult as time has gone by, with me becoming less and less successful in the lift and rotation.

Regardless of the difficulty, the end result is that I find myself sitting on the edge of my bed. I then slide backwards to get as far on the bed as I can, my legs setting the inward limit due to their hanging over the edge of the bed. Once I am on as far as I can get, I rotate my body as much as possible, lifting my legs, one at a time, until I end up roughly in a semi-prone position, or at least halfway there.

At this point I simply roll over until I am completely on my side, allowing myself to sleep that way. I then position my legs into something resembling a running position, with the upper leg in front of the lower. This way I remain until I become uncomfortable. Once comfort has left me or I feel like moving for no reason other than not being able to sleep, I roll from my side onto my back.

This is where the trouble begins. When I roll from my side to my back, my legs don't come along, or at least not easily. The momentum from my torso rotates my legs somewhat, such that near the end of the process they simply flip sideways, inevitably ending up crossing one another in the process. This means my left leg is now across my right leg, the cross happening at the ankles.

The cruciform leg position becomes uncomfortable fairly quickly, the weight of one leg at the ankle pressing on the other at the ankle. I cannot move them; there is no micro-adjustment for comfort. At this point I have two choices; I can rotate slightly further allowing my upper leg to slide off the lower and then roll back, or I can sit up and lift the leg off using my arms. When I am tired and sleepy, the rolling method is preferred.

Remember, with all this going on, I am only a couple of inches from the edge of the bed, usually on an angle as the sit/roll process for bed entry is never perfect. About once every couple or three nights, I do the partial rotation to slide my upper foot off of my lower, only to have that foot overshoot the edge of the bed and slide off. The weight of my foot then drags the rest of my lower leg. My leg falls out of my bed.

At this point I have to get up and essentially do the whole "get into bed" process all over again. Then I try to get back to sleep. Fortunately the effort of this work and the fact that it usually happens in the middle of the night means I am tired.

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