Leavin’ on a jet plane, don’t know when I’ll be back again

This is just a quick update of where I am with my darn leg.

I woke this morning, Wednesday, and realized that the pain had, if anything, worsened overnight. This was a major disappointment and I started to think about a sensible way forward. I’ve read more about cellulitis and am now concerned that a diagnosis from a doctor in an urgent care center isn’t quite what I need for such a potentially cataclysmic infection. As a consequence, I have decided to fly back home today (currently at Charlotte Airport) and have an appointment with my own doctor tomorrow morning. She will doubtless expedite blood work and diagnose me soon after that, giving me a plan of recovery.

When I considered a ticket home, I decided to buy a return for next Thursday, 5th June, in order to give myself time to properly resolve the issue or simply abandon my adventure.

I have been very touched by the kind responses to my disappointing news and will always appreciate the encouragement you have given me along the way.

That said, I remain committed to completing this hike as planned and have already calculated that, should I be able to resume where I left off on Sunday evening, my average mileage per day would need to increase by less than a mile a day.

A fully fit Mighty Blue will wipe that extra out every day by getting up 30 minutes earlier.

Easy peasy!!


41 thoughts on “Leavin’ on a jet plane, don’t know when I’ll be back again”

  1. Oh Steve, I have been following you amazing journey and I feel so bad for you right now. I am so sorry you got an infection in your leg, but glad to know you are not so delirious as to not get the proper care for it. I am sure you will be back on the trail before you know it. We will keep you in our prayers and hope for a speedy recovery. Go Mighty Blue! ~Jennifer Daniels

    1. Thanks Jen. I was really loving the experience and am keeping my fingers crossed that I can resume next week. Please send my love to the gang at CC.

  2. Might Blue
    My heart breaks as I read this post. I know how badly someone committed to a thru hike truly wants to finish. You are doing the right thing by flying home to a loving wife and trusted dr for a second opinion. My prayers for healing are with you! I hope you do indeed use the return ticket next week to complete your journey.
    700 miles in, you are a strong man! I have no doubt you will return and emerge victorious!

  3. Take care and get well. Looking forward to reading of your return to the trail.
    All the best,

    Hattons in Valrico

  4. Steve I am so glad God gave you brains to match your brawn…truly. This really scared me to read. Thank you for coming home and taking care of yourself. It means a lot to those who care for you! I believe you will be back on the trail…as with all things you have learned and thought us – when nature decides – which I really hope is next week with a healthy leg and good spirits!

    1. Thanks Katrina. While this was originally mainly for me, I really want to give you a check come October that helps all the great work that you and your team still need to do in our community.

      1. I would take a healthy Steve over a big check any day! I’m proud of what you have already accomplished…no pressure here :). I just want you to have the adventure you have dreamed of…I hope you get back for that reason, though the fundraising effort for Family Partnership Center is admirable and shows off your big heart. I appreciate you!

  5. Sorry we missed you in Charlotte, look forward to your return to the trail. Take care and heal quickly.

  6. Have truly enjoyed following the trail with you, and as with everyone else believe you are using good sense and praying for a speedy recovery and return to your journey. Look forward to hearing soon that you are headed back to conquer the Trail!

  7. Steve, I have followed you all the way, The shin is the worst part of the leg being so thin, fleshwise, as I know from experience it could take a long time and has a nasty habit of recurring. I felt for you when you started on the rocky part, should have taken your old football shin pads. Sorry for the morbid bit but you will need to take care of it.. I realise the disappointment but you are still young enough,perhaps something a little less testing in future. Sorry if it sounds like one of my lectures but now I have had two knees replaced I do know they can be very restricting,no kneeling, no running, boring. I am very impressed at what you have achieved, surprised me again. All good wishes for a speedy recovery. Norman K.

    1. You obviously taught me one or two things when I was younger, Norman! Had all the tests today and now waiting on the results, icing both the shin and my knees. I’ll be back!

  8. Steve, so sorry to hear of your untimely medical mishap.
    As no doubt you have found out by now cellulitis is a potentially life threatening condition that usually requires hospital admission and high dose IV antibiotics so hit it hard and early.
    Don’t whatever you do don’t rush recovery or you may be worse off in the longer term ambition of completing the the hike.
    Good luck and stay safe.
    Cheers Kevin P

    1. Kevin, the cellulitis seems to have abated (redness and swelling gone) but the tests have now been done to eliminate other possibilities. By Monday I should have an idea of how this is going to turn out, though I’ll decide next Wednesday. Thanks for the best wishes and sober advice. Steve

  9. Steve
    Sounds like you’ve made the right decision , as painful as it must be.
    Take KP’s comments on board and take your time to recover properly before you think about returning to the trip.
    You’ve done so well up to now so keep your chin up !
    Steve G.

    1. Gippo, my chin remains up and I will be following the doctor’s orders to the letter. If the tests eliminate the other horrors, I’ll be back on the Trail next week. Steve

  10. Good call mate. I had something similar a couple of years ago and the memory of the pain and lying on a hospital bed with three doctors standing over me discussing at which point they would amputate still gives me shivers. Antibiotics straight into the system via a canula works wonders. Brain 1 Body 0.

  11. Good decision.. By coincidence, a friend here in St Pete had the infection on his nose, awoke Sunday with it spreading towards his eyes, went to ER and then spent 3 days in the hospital getting antibiotics by IV. It is not something to ignore. Hope you can continue. Keep us posted.

  12. Steve, Best of luck with that cellulitis. Look forward to your posts here in Tampa. Love your writing style. The trail is number one on my bucket list. We are rooting for you.

  13. Hi Steve, I’ve been reading you regularly and thoroughly enjoying following your adventure. Annoyingly, you write quite well and I can understand why you want to write a book. I of course look out for spelling mistakes just to try and get my own back but to no avail!
    Just finishing a great weeks holiday in Corfu, will call you on Monday before you head back hopefully.

    All the best and well done so far,

  14. Steave, remember this:
    Philippians 4:13
    “I can do everything through him who gives me strength”

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