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17 Weeks

Four months and one week…that’s how much time has passed since November 13th when I broke my ankle.

Each week brings me closer to a full recovery, but I am still a long ways out.

This past week, I learned some painful, yet powerful lessons.

Last weekend, I thought I’d be all that and did three very tough weight lifting routines.

I’d wanted to start Body Beast ever since I’d been sidelined in November.  I had done chest and triceps the previous Friday, legs that Saturday, and biceps and back that Sunday.

To make matters worse, I spent about seven hours on my feet on Sunday…cooking four different recipes.

Boy, was I hurting when Monday rolled around.  I always say that it’s not the day after a workout that you’re most sore but the second day after.

This was me on Tuesday…standing like a gorilla because I couldn’t straighten my arms from Sunday’s bicep workout…

My ankle was a hot mess from Saturday’s workout, let me tell you.  It was so bad that the outside of my ankle…the side where I have my plate, was hurting.  This side rarely gives me problems.

When I got to physical therapy on Monday afternoon, I was doing some serious hobbling.

My physical therapists were not happy, and because I’d done too much, they weren’t able to add new exercises to my regimen.

The ice and stem therapy when I finished that day were much needed.

I struggled all week with my ankle…all because I’d tried to be my former, overachieving self.

Here’s what’s hard for me…remembering that, although my ankle might feel okay while I’m doing something, the effects of being on my feet or doing whatever it is I’m doing don’t hit until later.

I have to start thinking about the after-effects, which is so hard for me because I feel as though I’m missing out on stuff.

Sigh.

So, last week was frustrating, and I might have had a pity party or two when nobody was looking (and even when someone was).

The Mr. got a bit upset with me and fussed…in a loving way (ahem).  He reminded me that I am only four months out from breaking my ankle.

Yes, I can walk.

Yes, my limp is getting better.

Yes, I can drive and do some things.

The key is the word “some.”  That doesn’t mean all, and it doesn’t even mean that those “some” things are going to be to the full extreme that I’ve done them in the past.

YET.

One day, I’ll be able to.

Just not yet.

Just like I can’t wear pretty shoes for very long, so it’s tennis shoes and dresses, on the days when I feel like looking uber-professional.

Don’t be jelly of my fashion style.

Before I left my PT session on Wednesday, I was instructed to take it easy over the weekend…to not do any more than a mile without checking to see how I felt (it had been my intention to get started on my S.P.E.W. virtual race…six miles…broken up for me, of course).

I took their words to heart and went home on Friday determined to be a better patient.  On my way in the house, I stopped to smell the roses…literally.

It had been a tough couple of days with work stuff, and I listened to my body and crashed in the recliner.

Then, I did NOTHING on Saturday.  I stayed in my pajamas and read my new Neal Shusterman book, Scythe.  I had started it Friday night after the Man in the Brown Truck delivered it and finished it early Saturday evening.  It was FANTASTIC!

There were a few twists I didn’t expect, which made this a real page turner.

I took a bit of time out on Saturday to watch the movie If I Stay, which is based on Gayle Forman’s book.  I read it last summer and enjoyed it.  It was a heart-wrenching book.  The movie didn’t disappoint except in a couple of places where things strayed from the book a bit.

Gambit chose to interrupt my “me” time periodically throughout the day.  Being in the recliner puts me at the perfect level to give him a good scratch or two.

All of the resting made a huge difference for my ankle, as evidenced by the fact that you can see most of the bones in my foot.  They’re usually slightly obscured by the swelling that seems to be a constant part of my world right now.

As I type this, it’s Sunday afternoon.  The Mr. is grocery shopping, and I’d like to try to make a couple of things.  We found some recipes that don’t look like they’ll require a lot of standing-up time.  My fingers are crossed.

This journey is reminding me of the importance of rest.  So often, I, along with most of America, use the weekends to try to catch up on tasks that aren’t able to be done during the week.

My body, however, tells on me.  I need the kind of rest that requires purposely sitting down and not doing a whole lot of much, whether it’s thinking or finishing chores.  Everything gets done eventually…it just doesn’t have to be done now.

Speaking of now…the Mr. just pulled into the garage which means for now, I’ll be starting work on those recipes and then hunkering down in my recliner to watch a little NASCAR and, perhaps, enjoy a quick nap.

Thank you for your continued prayers as I press on in my recovery. ❤

Rhythms of Grace

When I woke up this morning and began looking at my various social media feeds, I saw this…

It had been posted by the Proverbs 31 ministry.

I loved the accompanying verse:

Psalm 37:23-26New International Version (NIV)

23 The Lord makes firm the steps
    of the one who delights in him;
24 though he may stumble, he will not fall,
    for the Lord upholds him with his hand.

25 I was young and now I am old,
    yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken
    or their children begging bread.
26 They are always generous and lend freely;
    their children will be a blessing.[a]

How these words spoke to my soul as I read them.

My pace has slowed to a crawl.

Literally.

You should have seen the Mr. last Monday as we made our way from the car in the parking lot to my surgeon’s office.  This was before my surgery (I got wheeled out afterward).

I took baby steps on my crutches.

I was terrified of hitting a crack in the sidewalk and falling.

He patiently escorted me, ready to catch me if I lost my balance.

I frequently apologized for going so slow.

He told me that he was glad I wasn’t going faster.

If you know me personally, you have seen me walk and heard me talk.

I do everything QUICKLY.

Even in my classroom.

I can be across the room faster than a student can turn his head.

My fitness watch / step counter loves me.

I’ve struggled with so many different aspects of my injury…physical pain, emotional distress, and frustration.

Slowing down has been a huge adjustment.

Yesterday, I had a pity party.  Actually the party moved after the Mr. wouldn’t indulge me.  I began texting back and forth with my friend, Barb.  She doesn’t do pity parties, let me tell you.  She gives you a minute (for me, she’s allowing two since I’m on crutches) before she tells you to pick yourself up and get on with business.

She listened, though, in the text-chat kind of way.

She told me, “You will have your life back – just a bump in the road.  Sometimes we need [to] get nudged from above to sit…”

This comes from a woman who doesn’t know how to sit.

She reminded me that this is another blessing in disguise.

It’s kind of hard to argue with God about being still when That’s. All. You. Can. Do.

The Bible verse that followed the illustration hit me too.

It is God who makes firm our steps.

He is the one who will determine when my ankle is strong again.

As a person who is used to being in control, this is difficult to come to terms with.

Beyond what I am doing…elevating my leg nearly 24/7…eating right…sleeping as much as I can…heeding all other directives given to me…I.  Can.  Do.  Nothing.

Nada.

To speed my healing along…to get back into my rush-rush life.

And so I am trying to deal with this with as much grace as I can.

I am thankful for this time, mind you, even as I fight my feelings of letting others down.

Just as God is directing my pace, so is He directing that of others.

It’s as if life is one long song, the rhythm of which changes according to the tempo of each stanza.

Although I am not currently dancing a fast jig, I will do so one day, once my healing is complete.

Just as the Mr. followed closely behind me on our way to the doctor’s office on Monday, God is standing in the gap, strong arms ready to steady me should I start to topple over, as I’m wont to do.

Until this current refrain of my lifesong is over, I remain focused on #findingjoyinthejourney.

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