(WMC-TV) - A familiar face is missing from the WMC Action News 5 team. You may have noticed, Anna Marie Hartman has not been at the anchor desk for a few weeks.
We are happy to report that Anna Marie is back at work with quite the story to tell about a serious injury.
"My new year's resolution was adventure, to get out of my comfort zone," she said.
And that is just what Anna Marie Hartman did. She went on a ski trip with friends to Chestnut Mountain in Galena, Illinois. One week before they left, the temperature was 1 degree. But by the time she slipped into her skis, temperatures soared into the mid-50s, creating slick, slushy conditions.
After just two hours on the slopes ...
"I took a hard right and my left ski got stuck in the slushy snow," explained Anna Marie. "I went right, my leg didn't come with me and when I fell, I fell inverted. I heard the snap and I knew it was bad."
She continued, "The first thing that went through my mind was, 'This is bad' and 'I've ruined everyone's vacation.' "
Anna Marie broke her femur bone, which is the biggest bone in your body. It is the thigh bone that is located about four inches above your knee.
Within hours of being rushed to the hospital, doctors surgically inserted a rod and screws into her thigh to set the bone. Two days later, she and her husband, Brad, were on their way back to Memphis.
"So, we rented a car, took care of all that, canceled flights and drove 10 hours and made it back," said Brad.
Doctors ordered Anna Marie to stay home for an entire month, much to the delight of her little dog, Martini, who has not left her side.
Anna Marie's husband, Brad, has been her rock.
"It's really hard not being able to cook, because I like to do it," she said.
"I've been quite the cook lately," added Brad.
It will be weeks, perhaps months, before Anna Marie can get around without the help of a wheelchair or walker.
"You just don't realize how many things you can't do when you can't use everything God gave you," she said.
For now though, she is glad to be back at work. And thanks to words of encouragement from her WMC Action News 5 family, she has no regrets.
"A co-worker of mine the other day, who broke her leg a few years ago roller skating, looked at me yesterday and said, 'At least we were living,'" said Anna Marie. "And that really helped because I was living. And I'm going to go on living. I'm not gonna let this scare me from doing other things."
Anna Marie says the first question everyone keeps asking is whether that trip was her first time skiing. She went skiing regularly growing up in Pennsylvania, but that was many years ago.