My shoulder hurts

An injury narrative

I started this blog in 2008, a few months after I had surgery to reattach my labrum, followed by a second surgery to clean out scar tissue from the first. The labrum is the ring of cartilage that holds the head of the humerus in the shoulder socket. Mine popped off during the 7:30am class at Renzo Gracie Academy, when one of the bigger boys inadvertently dislocated my shoulder. It made a bad sound. I lay on the mat with my arm a dead thing. “Don’t put it back in,” the instructor counseled me, in his hilarious Brazilian accent. I nodded, adjusting my hips and turning my wrist in such a way that it popped back in. It felt like getting hit in the face with a hammer. For the next ten days or so, until I got surgery, my arm would fall out of the socket whenever I leaned forward.

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