Actress Brooke Shields suffered a devastating accident while working out on a balance board at a New York City gym this past January. She has been through a lot since then, and now she’s posting pictures to Instagram illustrating her recovery process.
“It felt like it was all in slow motion. And then I just started screaming,” Shields told People magazine last week. “Sounds came out that I’ve never heard before.”
When the EMTs showed up and put her on a stretcher, the anxiety kicked in, Shields said. She feared the worst because the impact of her fall was so severe.
“I kept saying, ‘I can feel my toes’ because I was so afraid I was paralyzed,” Shields recalled.
Amid Recovery Process, Brooke Shields Takes to Instagram
It turned out Shields had broken her right femur, or thighbone. It is the largest bone in the human body, and it’s built to withstand significant pressure. People who break their femurs usually do so in serious car accidents.
Shields underwent a long and winding recovery process. And she is not afraid to share some decidedly unglamorous photos of herself on the mend, including one of her arm wrapped in heavy gauze.
“I’ve come a long way since this, but the journey is just beginning 💫,” Shields posted to Instagram this weekend.
Shields Underwent String of Surgeries
She arrived at the hospital only to get her first surgery, in which doctors inserted two metal rods from the top of her hip down and across her hip socket. But that wasn’t the end of her surgeries.
The broken part of her right femur soon popped out. So Shields had to undergo another surgery immediately. In this one, doctors added five rods and a metal plate to keep the whole contraption in place.
Two and a half weeks later, they sent her home. But her ordeal still wasn’t over. Shields had picked up a serious staph infection. So back to the hospital she went, and there she got another emergency surgery on the IV site where she’d had multiple blood transfusions.
Fortunately for Shields, she didn’t have the type of bacteria that’s resistant to antibiotics. But her multiple stints in the hospital took a toll. Her husband and two daughters, Rowan, 17, and Grier, 14, couldn’t see her throughout her time there due to COVID precautions.
Now back at home, hopefully for good, Shields is opening up about what she went through and what she learned from the whole experience.
“This is my journey,” she told People. “And if it took me breaking the largest bone in my body, then recovery is something I want to share. We have to believe in ourselves and encourage one another. There’s no other way to get through life, period.”