Conditions + Treatments
I have had a passion for football since I could walk. It has been something that I love and enjoy doing. I've played just about every sport you can think of, but football stuck with me. I started playing when I was just 4 years old, and I've played ever since.
My biggest fear was getting hurt in anyway. I didn't want anything to come between me and my first love. My freshman year in high school was the first time I had ever been injured. I fractured my L5-S1 in the lower portion of my back. Even though that was pretty bad, the worst was yet to come.
In January of 2015, I dislocated my right shoulder while working out at school. Dislocating my shoulder became a common occurrence, but this time I wasn't able to pop it back in place. My mom left work and took me straight to the hospital. It seemed like an eternity, but the hospital staff eventually got it back in place. After that incident, I decided it was time to do something about it. Luckily enough, Mrs. Melinda Wilson (Winfield's athletic trainer) help set me up for a MRI on my right shoulder. The MRI showed that I had a large Labrum tear. When Dr. McGough saw the results, he scheduled my surgery. After I had surgery, I went to rehab at Encore. Within 4 months, I was able to return to football. To this day, I have not had any trouble at all with my shoulder. I was able to continue playing football and return to normal life.
Even after all of that, the worst was still yet to come. On the night of November 5th 2015, I was playing in the first round playoffs against a school called Geraldine. I was starting left guard for my team and I was playing pretty good. We were on the 40 yard line and we were having a good drive. Our quarterback snapped the ball and I fired off to block the defensive end. I remember setting up a nice block for the running back to go right through the hole. I remember feeling someone hit me in the legs and I lost my balance. The defensive end pushed me backwards in a last effort to tackle the running back. My leg was pinned underneath the person who hit me, and my body went the complete opposite way of my leg. I remember seeing my ankle almost protruding out of my skin. I had dislocated my ankle and broke my fibula. My mind went fuzzy and I called for Mrs. Melinda to help me. She came out there with other doctors and trainers.
The first thing they did was call for a stretcher and put me in a temporary cast. I remember Dr. Gary Fowler (Winfield's team doctor) feeling for a pulse in my leg. When they realized there wasn't one, they loaded me on the stretcher and hurried me to the ambulance. I remember throwing my thumbs up and hearing the loudest cheers I've ever heard. My mother, stepdad, and girlfriend were all in tears. I stayed calm and told my mom that I was going to be alright. I really didn't know if I was going to be, but God sent a blessing my way. When we reached the hospital, Dr. Martin Hajjar just so happened to be at the hospital that night. He would've probably been the only man to be able to set my ankle back in place. After they sedated me enough to not remember, he popped my ankle in place the first time he tried. If he wasn't there that night, a part of my leg might have been amputated. While this was going on, Mrs. Melinda called Dr. McGough immediately and told him what had happened. Dr. McGough went out of his way to schedule surgery for me the very next day.
Early that next morning, we drove to Birmingham to have my surgery. I wasn't allowed any medicine in my system before my surgery, so the wait was agonizing. When I went back, I couldn't help but notice how caring the entire staff was. They talked to me and kept my mind off of my pain. The surgery went great, and they were able to repair everything. He placed a 10 inch rod, 11 screws, and 2 anchors in my leg. After surgery, I was a mess. I was angry and wanted to see my family and my girlfriend. The nurses were very patient with me, and for that I cant thank them enough. Recovering has been a interesting process. I was in a soft cast for 2 weeks, then a hard for 3-4 weeks. After I got my hard cast off, I was put into a boot. I couldn't bear weight yet, so I used crutches. I started therapy right after I got my boot. Therapy helped a ton, and I eventually started to bear weight. Eventually, I was finally able to take the boot off and walk again. I can not express how great it feels to finally walk again. My therapy is going good, but the nerves in my foot are still messed up from the trauma.
Today, I can say with confidence that I am recovering, and I'm doing great. Without Dr. McGough, Melinda, the Andrews Clinic, and Encore, I would not be where I am. Also, I want to thank my family, girlfriend, teammates, coaches, principal, and the community that supported. I especially want to thank God for looking over me always and helping me through every situation.