Dancing With the Stars

Melissa Gilbert: It's Hard to Be Sexy After Head Injury

04/16/2012 at 12:05 PM EDT

Dancing with the Stars: Melissa Gilbert Blogs About Injury
Melissa Gilbert and Maksim Chmerkovskiy
Adam Taylor/ABC
Things that go bump ...

This week has been the most challenging for me so far this season of Dancing with the Stars. As you know, Maks and I had a bit of an accident Monday night. The moment it happened, I had no idea what had gone wrong. I just knew Maks fell. My head hurt a lot and I assumed I'd hit it on the dance floor.

Things were spinning a bit for me when the judges gave their critiques. In fact, by the time I got up to the skybox I had no idea what they'd said.





I remember snippets; I remember Gavin carrying me down the stairs. I remember Maks trying to keep me from closing me eyes; I remember some of the ambulance ride, my boyfriend making me laugh through my tears. (Yes, the good-looking guy sitting beside my youngest son, cheering me on, is my boyfriend Thierry Gauchet.) I remember the X-ray and, boy oh boy, do I remember the headache!

I got my bell rung but good! I've never had a concussion before. It is not fun. I pray that it's something I never experience again.



Diagnosis: Grade-one concussion with moderate whiplash.

Recommendation by my neurosurgeon, who made a house call the next day, was to get bed rest, no Tuesday show, anti-inflammatories, ice, gentle massage and a stern warning: If I got a headache within the following week, I must stop dancing and get an MRI immediately.

Thankfully, no headache has appeared yet. Though my neck is still stiff, I have been rehearsing with Maks. In fact, I suggested that we end our dance tonight with the move that took us out last week. We are doing just that.

I must admit though, I'm having a hard time getting my sexy, dancer mojo back. I'm being a bit self-protective, a bit tentative and I'm finding it hard to just let go and have fun. So, that is my goal this week – to let go and have fun.

Yes, I was hurt. Yes, it was scary but, that was then ... this is now ... It's time to believe again!

My love and gratitude to my heroes: Gavin, Maks, Thierry, Michael, the cast and crew of Dancing, the paramedics, doctors and nurses who cared for me so very well, and to all of our fans who have prayed for my quick recovery. This dance is for each of you. It is my way of celebrating all that you have given to me.

Thank you, thank you, a thousand times.

Until next week, I send you oceans of love.

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