Friday, June 05, 2009

A Wrench in the Plans

I sprained my ankle last Friday. So easy to do, kind of like breaking my finger. I've never been a very graceful person, and not being able to pay attention to where I'm walking only exacerbates this tendency to fall over.

This time, I took Beckett and Eleanor for a walk around the block during the afternoon. I had Eleanor strapped in the Baby Bjorn on my chest, limiting my visibility. The leash was in my left hand, and I was looking at Beckett on my left. My right foot stepped into a depression, and down I went.

Since I've been wearing an aircast all week, I've heard lots of others' stories about sprained ankles. Walking down a step, stepping out of a shoe .... it's a miracle it doesn't happen more often. Our ankles are very vulnerable, it seems!

As I twisted my ankle, I feel forward onto my left knee and hands. Eleanor fell forward in the Bjorn and started screaming; I had a heart-stopping moment of panic that her head actually smacked the sidewalk. Fortunately, she was just scared by the feeling of falling, and was unhurt.

I picked myself up and hobbled over to a few steps near the sidewalk to assess the damage. Beckett may drive me crazy in a LOT of ways, but sometimes he reminds me how he's a good dog at heart. This time, he wandered around after I dropped the leash, but stuck close by and came when I called him back over.

What was the luckiest break for all of us is that an amazingly good Samaritan saw me fall and came over from the other side of the street to make sure I was okay. She was a junior in high school and I couldn't believe how kind and helpful and compassionate she was. I was certainly not that mature in high school, I'm sure. She took Beckett and waited while I checked myself out for the extent of the damage. When I decided the ankle wasn't going to fall off if I walked the quarter-mile back home, she kept Beckett and walked him home for me, so I could concentrate just on staying upright. If it wasn't for her, I don't know how I would have made it home. You never want to be in the position where you need to lean on a stranger, but it was a wonderful feeling to know that people like her are still around .... and living close by!

I waited until Saturday morning to go to the Urgentcare, vainly hoping that it would feel all better in the morning. Of course it didn't, so Keith and Eleanor took me to the hospital because I wasn't sure if I could drive myself.

This was just another reminder that everything is different once you're a parent. On the way to the appointment, my biggest concern was that I hoped I didn't need crutches. How in the world would I manage that AND carry around Eleanor? Or get there just in the nick of time when she was about to fall/eat the dog's bone/etc.?

I laughed to myself when the doctor told me it was just a mild sprain, and I should rest and elevate the ankle for a few days and stay off it as much as I could. In my world, that means laying on the couch and icing it at 9 o'clock at night, after Eleanor is in bed. Or maybe one other time during the day, if I'm lucky.

Even with my lack of care, the ankle seems to be healing nicely. The swelling has gone down significantly and I have a lot more movement and very little pain. I'm supposed to wear the aircast continuously until tomorrow, and then I can start taking it off for short amounts of time and see how it feels.

My biggest concern going forward is that, although ankles heal, being a klutz is a permanent condition. Does this mean that I should never walk with the dog and Eleanor together again? Can I not be trusted to stay on my feet, despite distractions? If I can't do 3 things at once, then I'll never get anything done. I was so looking forward to getting out and walking more once the weather turned nice. It would be a shame if Beckett and Eleanor have to take their walks without me.


Amy said...

Glad to hear you're on the mend!

I broke my ankle in college, when I slipped on some ice. (My friend Aaron always like to chime in, "Miller Lite Ice!" at this point, because he contends that I was drunk. I maintain that I was not; it is my story, and I am sticking to it.)

Anyhow, maybe Little L can tool around in this, so you can focus on finding level ground for putting one foot in front of the other. : )

Amy said...

Gah! My HTML tags don't seem to be working.

Here's what I wanted to link to:

(Do it. It's totally worth it.)

M. Lubbers said...

Wow. Just ... wow. In all of our trips to garage sales and Babies R' Us, I have NEVER seen anything like that!