In a surreal transformation from healer to victim, a once healthy physiotherapist finds herself suffering the injuries she once treated, showing when it comes to employees and injuries, there’s nothing quite like walking in someone else’s shoes...
A Life-Changing Moment
Cycling to work, Alison Lyddon saw a car turn in front of her – and knew there was no escape. She came to underneath the automobile, which had to be hydraulically lifted off her body. Transported to Royal London major trauma center by ground ambulance, she was terrifyingly aware she could be at-risk for spinal cord injury and permanent paralysis.
The Turning of the Tables
Diagnostics on arrival revealed a crushed fourth-vertebrae and spinal cord damage, affecting sensation and muscle command of Lyddon’s arms and legs. An operation re-purposed a bone from her hip, placing it into her neck to reform the vertebrae. Transformed from healer to victim, she awoke completely vulnerable, unable to move, feed, or wash herself.
A New Path
Family and friends gathered, overwhelming Lyddon with compassion as she began the arduous 10-week journey she had previously helped her patients surmount, her body morphing into a form she wasn’t sure if she could rely on. Rushing back to work (administrative duties) following recovery, she failed to process the full emotional trauma of the incident. Eventually crumbling, then withdrawing to process, she later returned to her much-loved profession, but not to the frontline – teaching and inspiring future physiotherapists and sharing valuable insight for those unfamiliar with such traumatic injuries.
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