A “Crippling” experience

(This entry is a finalist in our Good, Bad, and Funny honeymoon story contest.  There are 16 stories, please vote for our winner by adding a comment to your favorite.)

Our adventures all started out about two months before we got married while we were engaged.  My husband worked at a ski resort and was an avid snowboarder.  He called me late one night from work and told me to meet him at the hospital because he thought he broke or hurt his leg really bad.

My heart sunk and I thought this can not be happening I have a wedding coming up.  I met him at the hospital and the doctor told him that he would need knee surgery in the morning and he thought that they could just go in with a scope and clean off some bone chips that had broken off and fix a little torn tendon.

The next morning he went into surgery and half way into the surgery the doctor came out to his mother and I and told us that he had bad news.  When they went in to clean out his knee that found out that he had broken off the whole bottom part of his femur and he would either need a knee replacement or there was a new procedure that they could do a cartilage and bone transplant using his own cartilage and bone, but it would require another surgery in 2-3 weeks.

I was dying because I was doing the math in my head and thought I am going to have to cancel my wedding because that means he will have the 2nd surgery 3 weeks before our wedding.  We decided on the new procedure and they took a cartilage sample from him at that point and then they sent the cartilage to Boston to a lab that regenerated more cartilage for his transplant scheduled in one week.  When my husband woke up I was dreading telling him that in a week he would have to have major knee surgery and wouldn’t be able to walk for 8 weeks.  The news did not go over well as you can imagine.

Then that next week they called us and told us that his defect was so severe that they would need an extra week to regenerate more cartilage.  I felt like I had a stopwatch on my neck and I was just watching time click away and get closer to our wedding day.

We had LONG talks about postponing the wedding, but after long debates and some things that would not be able to reschedule we decided that the SHOW MUST GO ON!  I told him that I only had one rule and that was he better not have to take pain pills on our wedding day because I wanted to make sure he was really in the moment and knew what he was agreeing to! :)

Well he had the major knee surgery and all went well, the recovery was very hard on him for the first few days but he was a trooper.  The nurses and doctors at the hospital were laughing that we were still getting married in 3 weeks and that he would be in a wheelchair.  I never left his side while he was in the hospital and I was still so excited to marry this man.

We got married in the winter and we did have a week long honeymoon scheduled in Jackson Hole to go snowboarding, but that soon changed.  After the surgery my husband could not put ANY weight on his leg for 8 weeks in order to let the transplant heal, and then he was on crutches and in re-hab for the next 6 weeks.  So the first 4 months of our marriage he was either in a wheelchair or on crutches.

By the time our wedding day rolled around he was feeling really good and NO he didn’t even need pain relievers anymore.  Our wedding day was PERFECT with just some minor adjustments for the groom.  He was in a wheelchair during the whole ceremony and we have some really fun pictures of me pushing him around and of him holding me on his lap in the wheelchair.  We did get a few pictures of him standing on one leg with his crutch propped up behind me.

Then during the reception he was able to sit on a big plush chair (no this is not a reason to break your leg) the whole time.  His leg and surgery was the topic of conversation all night.  Everyone thought they were pretty funny cracking the honeymoon jokes all night about him not being able to perform to 100% capacity.

The wedding day went great and then came the honeymoon, not in Jackson Hole.  We changed our plans to stay at Anniversary Inn for 2 nights and just relax.  We stayed at the Mansion location in Salt Lake City and we had two rooms booked for our stay that happened to be on the very top floor, and this place does not have an elevator (I do not know what we were thinking).

We arrived at Anniversary Inn in our Limo and the driver helped us unload our things (bags, WHEELCHAIR, crutches, and a knee rehab machine that was HUGE that he had to use 3 time a day).  It was 11:00pm by this time and the driver made a pile of our things on the sidewalk and then just left.

So here we are standing on this sidewalk late at night with only one of us that can carry anything and a room that is up like 5 flights of stairs.  So I walk into the front lobby to check in and they see me with a husband on crutches and a wheelchair in my hands and the look on the girls face was classic, she was probably thinking, “Yeah I bet you guys will be having a good ol’ crazy time.”

After we checked in it took me 5 trips up and down those stairs to get everything up into our room and by this time it’s almost midnight and I am all tired and sweaty and did not feel sexy at ALL.  My husband felt so bad that he couldn’t help me at all, but I still loved him.  Our situation made for a very different and crazy honeymoon but we survived and had a great time just being together and relaxing.  We got jokes about the nurse taking care of her patient and how I was the one in charge because my husband could barely even move, but we just laughed along with everyone and knew that it would get better in the future, which it has of course!

People still can’t believe it when I tell them that when we got married my husband was in a wheelchair.  We are coming up on our 9th wedding anniversary and in the last 9 years I have taken care of my husband with 6 more surgeries, so I think the first one was just preparing me for the many more to come.  But we are doing good now and I would love to win this weekend getaway to celebrate a weekend at Anniversary Inn WITHOUT the wheelchair!  I am in charge of planning our honeymoon this year and it would be a perfect gift to the man I love so much and who is my very best friend.


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