Update – Alison Fujito

Well, the last 5 months have been a continuation of the roller-coaster ride, but
the good news is, I am playing again!

My left shoulder (the one initially injured in the accident) was expertly
repaired by  Dr. Glenn Buterbaugh, but regaining the unusual range of motion
required to play the violin proved difficult.  Laurie did a marvelous job
getting my arm moving again, and Josh did wonders getting the last bit of
external rotation. Chiropractor Dr. Robert Costellokept my neck and spine from
twisting out of control (no easy task when one shoulder is tightening like mad).  So you can see, it was a real team effort!

I guess my role in the team (besides for faithfully doing my physical therapy
exercises twice a day) was never giving up, despite a few bumps in the road.

The most unexpected bump actually came in January, right about the time when my
left shoulder was showing an amazing amount of progress. I had also been
experiencing pain in my right shoulder, and an X-ray showed a bone spur. An MRI
showed a tear to the supraspinatus, most likely caused by a combination of the
bone spur and overuse (during all those months when I could not move my left

The very last thing I wanted was another surgery.  The orthopedist has a
wonderful sense of humor, dispelling the myth that surgeons are lacking in that
department.  When he discussed the bone spur/torn tendon with me, I said, "Well,
you did a fantastic job on the left shoulder, and I’m very greatful, but–but–"
and I got all choked up at the thought of another surgery and couldn’t go on.

He smiled, and gently said, "But you don’t want to do that dance with me again,
do you?" He understood!

Luckily,  he felt that the tear was not severe enough to necessarily warrant
surgery, so the next step was rest (to let the tear heal), and then more
physical therapy.  Yep, I had to start all over!  At least, this time, I had an
idea of what was in store for me.

I have been absolutely thrilled to be able to return to work this week. 
Tonight’s program is wonderful, and although I’m disappointed that Maestro
Fruhbeck had to cancel, I have really enjoyed working with substitute conductor
James DePreist, who last conducted us in the early 90’s. I also remember him from
the Aspen Music Festival in 1982, when he conducted the Aspen Chamber Orchestra
in a very moving and beautiful Verklarte Nacht by Schoenberg. He has a wonderful
way with words.  On Wednesday, we were rehearsing the Haydn symphony, and he was
trying to get the character just right, and he told us, "Make it cute. Make it
so cute that you just want to pinch its little cheeks."

Oh, it’s so great to be back!

See you at the Symphony!

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