A few summers ago, I backpacked Europe alone. Last summer, I ran a half marathon. Most days, I’m an individual who prides herself in her independence and the ability to conquer any challenge. This month, going more than a few steps has become a feat in itself.
Two weeks ago, I was in bed with the flu. I had just finished watching Mad Men and was content to snooze off into a NyQuil and Don Draper induced haze.
My last thought before dozing off was: “I should take some vitamin C and zinc before going to bed.” I quickly jumped out of bed, shattered the cup I had just used to take NyQuil, and proceeded to lacerate my tendon on the broken glass.
My apartment looked like a murder scene.
Howling in pain, I ventured to the ER. The doctor informed me that surgery would be necessary and I would be put on crutches for over a month. I started laughing. The outcome was clearly not funny, but my defense mechanism for pain has always been laughter. Flashback to the time I fell down a flight of stairs and sat at the bottom laughing uncontrollably.
After three morphine filled days in the hospital, I was given a shiny pair of crutches and was then discharged to hobble off into the sunset. After a week of excruciating pain, I finally ventured out of my apartment. Hobble. Hobble. Hobble. I made it one block and promptly returned to my apartment collapsing on the sofa. This was not going to be easy.
The next day, I went two blocks.
The following I went four.
By the end of the week, I could travel a mile.
Next challenge: Taking the subway to work.
Though the last few weeks have been difficult, so many people have helped make this experience a bit more bearable. From strangers opening doors, to friends helping me take out the trash, this experience has truly been humbling and I can’t stress enough my appreciation for all of the kindness displayed. To everyone who helped me – you will never know the extent of my gratitude.
When I first got my crutches I promptly Googled “Getting Around On Crutches In NYC.” I was disappointed by the search results. To remedy this, here are my tips that will hopefully help someone else in a similar position.
Delivery Is Your New Best Friend
Today, there are so many delivery services that can bring anything right to your door. From smoothies to grocery delivery, I have been able to order anything my heart desired. Two websites that made this possible were Seamless and FreshDirect.
Seamless: Order takeout from any restaurant. Bonus: Free $7 on your first order.
FreshDirect: Grocery delivery right to your doorstep. Bonus: $100 off your first two orders.
Find Out Which Subways Are Handicap Friendly
The NYC MTA website lists the subway stations that are handicap accessible. You can view this information here.
Taxis Are A Godsend
In the rain, you’ll need a taxi. In New York, rain makes it near impossible to hail a cab in a timely manner. Drenched after a downpour, I quickly learned this. For this reason, download an application like Uber to request a cab. This way, you can sit indoors until a taxi arrives. Bonus: $10 off your first ride.
Though difficult, navigating NYC on crutches is possible! In the same boat? Connect with me on Twitter for more tips – would love to chat.