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Week 47 (Plus One Day)

Are you tired of reading these update posts?  I hope not!  Even if you are, I hope you’ll stick with me through this one.

Spoiler Alert:  Naw . . . either read so you won’t spoil the ending or scroll on down.  Ha!

Let’s talk about Week 47 in my recovery from the trimalleolar fracture I suffered from on November 13 of last year.

I knew, going into last week, that it was going to be a tough one.  My students were about to take the second part of their FSA Reading Retakes, and I would be proctoring both days . . . full days . . . standing on my feet in a computer lab.

I went to physical therapy on Tuesday and made this little video of the back room . . .

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I remember the first few months of my therapy.  I’d see people go to the back room and wondered what kind of work they were doing back there.  It seemed way beyond what I was doing out in the main room.

By July, I had advanced far enough that this room became my primary training spot.  It’s where I completed the monster walks, toe touches, step ups, and lunges (and other exercises) that my therapist added to my routine.

I don’t remember exactly what we did last Tuesday; all I know is that J, my therapist, probably increased something in difficulty.  I’d been progressing pretty rapidly, so she liked to challenge me a little more each time I was at therapy.

I was more than ready for my ice down at the end.  Between proctoring and my PT, my ankle was screaming for relief.

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Wednesday, I drove across town to the Chick fil A that was open (the one closest to my school has been closed since a water main broke).  I needed sweet tea to get me through Day 2 of testing . . .

By Thursday, I was physically and mentally done.  I went in with plans to show my students a SAT prep video because most of them were taking it on Saturday.

The teaching gods laughed at me.  This Snapchat filter captured my mood perfectly at the end of day . . .

I went from school to physical therapy.  Thursday was a BIG day for me.  I got to do walking lunges for the first time since I broke my ankle!

We’d been slowly working on lunges.  That’s the neat thing about my therapist.  She’s amazing at building up to big moves by having patients master itsy bitsy pieces of the moves until they all come together for the big moves she ultimately wants patients to be able to do.

So, walking lunges were huge for me.

I also got to practice walking up and down a step.  She taught me to lean forward when I’m stepping down to help with my balance.  I still have trouble going down steps, so this was important.

I also got to do calf stretches on the stairs for the first time since June.

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This is a move that I was doing before my setback in July when we had to reset me back to the basics.

My ankle was, as usual, done for by the end.

In case you’re wondering how my ankles compare after all of this time, take a look at this . . .

So much of that swelling on my right ankle is from the hardware . . . those three extra long pins.  I am so eager for my December surgery, when my surgeon will remove them.

Friday morning, I was back at it . . .

Even though I had taken the day off, I wanted to get my workout done.

I don’t want to spoil my next post, but I will say that the Mr. and I went out of town.  My ankle didn’t fare so well Friday afternoon, but it did okay the rest of the weekend.

I did get some PT work in though . . .

Sunday technically ended Week 47, but I really want to talk about today, Monday, the first day of Week 48.

Because it was Columbus Day, I didn’t have to work.  My district gives us this day off every year, and I was so glad for it!

I made an early physical therapy appointment.

It was a special one.

So y’all, it was my LAST physical therapy appointment!

To thank the therapists for everything they’d done for me, I brought them some baked goods . . .

Those are called Perfect Vegan Snickerdoodles, and they really are perfect.  One of the gals ate one immediately and RAVED over it.

Technically, I’ve used all of the visits that my insurance allows in a six-month period.

Am I 100% better yet?  Nope.  I’m probably around 75% there.  The problems are two-fold:  the hardware in my ankle that is limiting my movement and causing pain and time that is needed for more healing.

When I signed in this morning, the gal at the desk said, “Happy Graduation!”

Y’all, I got a lump in my throat!

What a bittersweet morning!

I had to fill out a questionnaire about my ability to perform various activities like getting out of the tub, running (I’m not doing this yet), etc.

Then, I walked back to the PT room and sat at the bicycle to warm up.

My therapist walked over with a smile on her face and told me that I was glowing today.

Y’all, the tears came, unbidden, then.  She didn’t see them right away, but when she returned, she asked if I was okay.

Dang, but I was a little embarrassed.

I told her that I was emotional, but for good reasons.  This group of caregivers had become like family over the past seven and a half months.

I know about their children; I know how they spend their weekends.  There’s a lot of bonding that happens as you move from one exercise to another . . . a lot of time to chat while you’re putting bands on your legs or trying to balance on one leg.

These people had celebrated every single milestone, from my being able to set aside my crutches to the day I was no longer limping.

They dried my tears the day I couldn’t stand on one foot; and they prayed for me when the hubby was so sick that I didn’t know if he was going to be okay.

ALL of those memories and the emotions that went along with them were running through my head as my therapist and I chatted.

She even noticed the wad of Kleenex I’d stuck in the pocket of my sweater.  They were actually for the runny nose I was still suffering from – remnants of the cold I got a week and a half ago.

Ha!

Once I got that initial burst of tears out, I was good to go . . .

I moved through my round of exercises, with J adding a few new ones in.

She checked my form when I was doing walking lunges and made a small correction.

I’ll forever hear her voice every time I work out (“make sure the knee is over the ankle” and “sit into the squat . . . don’t lean over it”).

She had me walk up and down the flight of stairs that’s in the main workout room . . . numerous times to get my form right.  Who knew that you needed to push your knees out to help with balance?  I felt so awkward, but as always, she was the patient teacher.

She created a home exercise plan for me to follow with progressive exercises to challenge me when the old exercises get too easy.  She knows that I’ll push myself too far too quickly if I’m not careful.

We went over the plan, and she worked with me on form.

I got to practice jumping (I’m soooooo scared of this) and an exercise that will eventually lead up to running.  I practiced what wound up being a warrior stretch (hello Piyo . . . thanks for prepping me for this).

It was her way of sending me off armed with what I’d need even when she’s not there, coaching me through each movement.

I’d burned a LOT of calories during my workout . . .

Then, I sat and iced down one last time . .

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Sorry, but I love Snapchat.  This animation fit perfectly.  I felt as though I’d been given the key that would unlock the door to the rest of my recovery.

Then, it was time to go.

I gave a tight hug to J and told her that she was a miracle worker.  She really was.  I had such a rough July and couldn’t envision myself being out of the pain that I was in that month.  Plus, my main PT had changed offices, and the new one I’d been assigned quit working less than two weeks after I started back.  I had felt a little abandoned.  J took incredible care of me and managed my recovery process perfectly.  To be as young as she is (the same age as Chicky), her expertise is top-notch.

I hugged the other two gals that I’d been with from Day 1 as well.  They are special ladies.  They’d seen me when I crutched in that first day.  They’d watched the entire process and knew just how far I’d come.  I mean, heck, I couldn’t even rotate my foot – at all – when I started.

They have the amazing privilege of watching people get their functionality back, and I’ve just been in awe of that.  Plus, they do so with great tenderness and positivity.

I hollered out a final goodbye, thanked the insurance gal in the office, and walked out . . .

I may be back in January if I wind up needing more physical therapy after my December surgery.

For now, I’m taking many lessons with me.

I’ve learned how to pace myself regarding my recovery.

I’ve accepted that it’s okay to take things slowly.

I’ve grown to recognize the voice in my head (aka God’s prompting) when my body has had enough.

I’ve discovered that it’s okay to not be an overachiever in everything I do . . . meaning that I don’t have to do all the things to be what I consider “accomplished.”

I’ve learned how to roll with the punches.  Having things changed up on me has always been difficult; however, this entire process has been a series of things changing, whether it’s the therapist I’m working with, new moves being added to the mix (or old ones being taken out), or new days of the week to attend therapy.  I am not getting bent out of shape with unexpected changes to my routine, and that is a very good thing.

So, while I still have a ways to go in my recovery, and I know I’ll have a small setback in December when I have my surgery, I continue to trust that God will get me through each phase and that, in His time, I’ll recover.

One thing I’m slowly coming to terms with is that my ankle may never be the same as it was (or as good as the left ankle), and that’s hard for me.  Still, I choose to trust, and I continue my mantra of #findingjoyinthejourney no matter how easy or how hard things are.

What a blessing this injury has been.

Oh, sure, I’d rather that it had not happened; however, it did, and I can’t change that.  All I can do is look for God’s hand in allowing this.  I thank Him for getting me through each week . . . or rather each day of each week.

I won’t be posting regular updates from this point forward.  I think my updates will just come incidentally as part of my regular posts.  I’ll probably do a big One Year Anniversary post.

I hope that these posts have been encouraging to anyone going through something similar.  I pray that one day, I can read back through them without crying.  For now, I’m still living through the experience, so I can’t go there yet, despite my first PT’s suggestion that I do.

Please continue praying as the healing continues.  Thank you so much for being here for me each step of the way!

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Weeks 45 and 46

Here we go again . . . a lapse in posting ankle updates last Sunday has led to the need to catch up this week.

Hello fatigue.  It sure didn’t take long for us to get reacquainted this school year.

Let’s talk!

*Disclaimer #1 – This is a LONG post.  I’m sorry!  Bear with me though?  I’ve got some interesting news down toward the end.*

**Disclaimer #2 – I apologize for any grammar mistakes.  I got lazy by the end of this longgggggggg post and didn’t feel like going back to proofread.  If you find something amiss, will you comment or email me so I can fix it?  Thanks!!**

Week 45

I started the week off as I usually do . . . with an early-morning workout . . .

I had physical therapy that afternoon.

I was pleasantly surprised when my therapist gave me this . . .

She’d gone to visit a friend in California during her “escape” from Hurricane Irma.  While there, she went to an antique store and found that stone you see there.  She had me on her mind and brought it to me, along with instructions to keep it in the freezer and use it to roll under the arch of my foot when it hurts (which is nearly daily).  It’s the perfect size and very helpful for working out the kinks that I still get with my tendinosis.

My therapist worked me pretty hard by increasing the number of reps I had to do for each exercise.  I burned a crazy amount of calories . . .

For the record, I don’t recommend breaking your ankle and then doing PT as a formal type of exercise program.

Just sayin’.

Tuesday evening, my ankle was shot, and I found myself trying to make my ankle pop late into the night . . .

Of course, I had gone to the grocery store after work to pick up ingredients for a Creamy Pasta Marinara recipe I’d seen on this site.  The picture does not do it justice.  It was absolutely divine!  The homemade cashew cream made all the difference in the world!

I didn’t let my sore ankle stop me from working out on Wednesday morning (not much stops me, truth be told) . . .

I discovered an issue later that morning (or maybe it was that afternoon) when I went to grab something from my pantry, leaned forward with my right leg bent behind me, and experienced a sharp pain that stopped me in my tracks . . .

See the way I’m leaning forward into that right knee?  My tendon is so tight that it balks, loudly, when I hit an invisible wall and can’t go any further.  It doesn’t happen with my left ankle.

I showed this picture to my therapist the next day, and she imitated the move to understand what I was talking about.  She told me that I needed to train myself to lean down the way she’s been teaching me during my sessions . . . going down fully on my knee rather than angling myself awkwardly like this.

I’m completely awkward though.  It’s hard to retrain a 47 year old on how NOT to be awkward.  I mean, this is probably one HUGE reason why I broke my ankle to begin with.

Sigh.

During Thursday’s PT session, I got to do my step ups with a new variation – raising my knee up when I stepped up . . .

It might not sound like much of a challenge; however, it really was.  Every time we make things more difficult, my balance is affected.  This variation also works on my core, which I need to be strong as well to help me overall.  I absolutely love that I’m making progress, one raised knee at a time.

PT that day was pretty good, but I was sore as crap from the week.

That didn’t stop me from walking four (yes, I said FOUR) miles on Saturday . . .

It was such a beautiful day, as you can see in the picture.  My ankle was sore from the get-go.  I had shin pain on the inside of my ankle, and it never got better, but I pushed on and managed a decent pace (for me) of 15:30.

I was pleased as punch and felt quite accomplished when I finished.

My ankle began hating life immediately, however.  I had to give it a good stretch when I went inside.

Y’all, I really MUST learn to listen to my ankle.  One would think I’d have sat down after starting off my day like that, but NOOOOOOOO, I decided that I needed to make all the things . . .

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There was Roasted Red Pepper Hummus to be prepared.  It was divine, by the way.

There were Fudgy Vegan Beet Cupcakes to bake (a recipe I’d had my eye on for a week or two) . . .

I didn’t let any batter go to waste – hence the baby cupcake . . .

I bought the cupcake pans here.  I am in LOVE with them!  Look how easy it was to get these babies out . . .

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These are some of the best cupcakes I’ve ever made!  The texture was spot-on.  They are moist and chock-full of flavor!  I’d never heard of beet puree before, and the recipe did suggest applesauce as an alternative; however, I wanted to challenge myself to try something new and attribute the consistency of the cupcakes to the puree.  I took a few cupcakes to school to share with a couple of teacher friends.  A couple of students were also gifted cupcakes.  Everyone LOVED them and couldn’t believe they were vegan.

I also made the Mr. his donuts so he could have something fun to eat over the weekend.

My ankle was so angry when I finished and finally sat down to watch football on TV.  I spent the rest of the day in a lot of pain.

Y’all, it’s so hard for me to sit still sometimes.  This ankle injury has kept me down for so long that I get extremely frustrated and rebellious.

Like the next day when I decided to bake AGAIN because I had puree that I didn’t want to go to waste.

I had at least three more recipes planned out.  I made another batch of cupcakes . . .

I also made Vegan Chocolate Lava Cakes . . .

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I had donuts on my mind as well . . . 30-Minute Chocolate Vegan Donuts . . .

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As a side note, the donuts wound up not being my favorite.  I don’t know if it’s because I cooked them a little too long or what, but they were dry.  Everyone who tried them said the same thing.  I doubt I’ll make these again.

One thing I did learn from the weekend of cooking was that Aquafaba (the liquid in a can of chickpeas) is AMAZING!  Quite a few recipes have started asking for it as an egg substitute.  It’s so much better than flax or chia eggs!  I loved working with it!

While things were baking in the oven, I had Broccoli Detox Soup going on the stove . . .

After all of that baking, I was in desperate need of these . . .

That combination works wonders on the swelling and pain in my ankle when I’ve overdone myself.

Week 46

So, it’s not surprising that I started off last week behind the eight ball.  After being on my feet all weekend plus walking those four miles, I was done for.  This was going to be one heck of a week, let me tell you.

That didn’t stop me from working out in the wee hours of Monday morning . . .

Monday, I had to administer the FSA Writing Retakes to fifty juniors and seniors . . . all kiddos who are trying to pass this state assessment to graduate.  I was on my feet ALL DAY.

I had physical therapy after school, and boy did I get a workout!  Look how fast my heart was beating after I finished doing three sets of monster walks / squats combinations . . .

I also got to do FULL lunges!!!!!

Do you know how happy I was to be doing something close to what I’d been doing BEFORE I broke my ankle nearly a year ago?

Do be sure, they were tough, tough, tough.  I am constantly surprised by how weak I still am despite months of working out.  The injury really set me back, and each new exercise (or variation) makes me realize how much farther I need to go.  However, I’m also amazed at how far God has brought me.

One funny moment about the picture you see above:  A fellow patient who’s there the same days I am commented that it looked like I was ready to play Twister (the colored mat).  I had a good laugh at that.  You’ve got to find humor in the little things, eh?

One fun thing I got to do was bounce on a mini trampoline . . .

I’d asked my therapist when I will be able to jump again.  She pulled out the trampoline and had me bounce without jumping in the air.  That felt okay.  This was something I couldn’t do a few months ago, so I was excited.  Then, she had me go from side to side, without jumping, to see how that felt.  It too felt fine.  Next, she let me put a tiny bit of air between each foot and the trampoline as I moved from side to side.

Y’all, it almost felt as through I was jogging.  It felt incredible.  I told her that I wish I could have a moving trampoline that traveled down the sidewalk as I jogged to soften my landing.  She chuckled.

Oh, and to make Monday harder, after my physical therapy appointment, I went back to my school for Open House!  I was absolutely exhausted when I got home around 7:30 after being gone from the house for over twelve hours.  It had been a very, very long day!

Despite the hard workout Monday afternoon, I still got up on Tuesday and did my physical therapy exercises.  I make it a point to do them on the days I’m “resting” or only doing abs from my Body Beast program . . .

I used my fireplace hearth to do my step ups.  See how clever I am?!

That afternoon, I made up a batch of One Pot Vegan Minestrone Soup and Easy Vegan Gluten-Free Biscuits (thus putting more pressure on my ankle).  The soup turned out so well!  I ate on it all week for lunch.

Oh my yum!  My ankle may have been dying, but my stomach was quite the happy camper.  Can you say comfort food?

I went to physical therapy on Wednesday because I had a doctor appointment on Thursday.

One of the last exercises I do every PT session is balancing.  On Wednesday, I got moved up to the blue disc.  It’s extremely difficult to stand on one leg and balance for 45 seconds.  I had gotten to where I could do it fairly well by June, but when I had my bad month of July, I regressed.  That’s why we’ve been working so slowly to get me back up to par.  My therapist always puts this balancing exercise at the end of my workouts specifically because it’s more difficult after I’ve exhausted my muscles during the other strengthening moves.

I spent all of this past week sore, sore, sore.  My therapist and I had discussed the “why” of it all, and she explained that I’m going through a building process right now.  Any time we change up the routine by either adding more reps or going up in a move with a harder variation of it, I’m in a transitional phase.  She said that this is when the tearing and rebuilding of muscle occurs, and it can take a week or two for my body to adjust.  Hence, the extra pain.  It’s necessary, though, to get better.

I’m cool with that.

Needless to say, I was mighty glad for the ice and STEM that followed . . .

On Thursday, I drove two hours to visit my ankle surgeon . . .

I was so tired from the week, and I was feeling a cold coming on, but I wasn’t about to let those things deter me.

My doctor’s office is always so gracious about scheduling late appointments to accommodate my work schedule and the time needed to get there.  I arrived early and waited . . .

Someone from the office had called me that morning to ask if I could go in early – that they’d had some cancellations.  I got there at 5:30 but still had to wait a bit.  I didn’t mind though.  This doctor is amazing at what he does.

I did sit back on the examination table and doze off though, but only after I snapped a photo of the x-ray I’d had done in June . . .

A quick explanation.  The right side of the x-ray, with the three long pins, is actually the inside of my ankle.  The side with nine pins and the plate is the outside.  The inside of my ankle is what slammed directly onto the floor when I fell last November.  The plate on the outside was placed there because I broke that side pretty high up my leg.  I also broke a third part of my ankle, but it didn’t require pins.

Crazy stuff.

I’m not sure that the doctor was aware why I was there since I’d been corresponding with his nurse through email.  She wasn’t there that day (ironically, she’d had surgery and was out for a week).

I think that he assumed it was a regular visit.

He asked about my tendonosis.  I told him that it was getting better but wasn’t 100% yet, and that I had to “pop” my ankle frequently when pressure built up.  I told him about my new therapist who’s a miracle worker but had to reset me back in July because of the problems I’d been experiencing.

I told him about the pins that had been bothering me, which was the reason for my visit.

He manipulated my foot around, made me push against his hand and hold it sturdy while he pushed and pulled on it.

At first, he sounded like he wanted to wait to do the surgery I was inquiring about (the removal of three pins on the very edges of both sides of my ankle).  However, once we began talking at length, and when he took a closer look at my ankle, he changed his mind.

He told me, “You’re an unusual case.”

Ha.  I think that’s the understatement of the year.

He said that they aren’t used to seeing people of my stature (i.e., so petite).  Basically, because I’m so small, I can feel every bit of hardware he put in there to stabilize my ankle.  Because of that, I’m in a lot of pain.

He also commented on the swelling in my ankle.

Thank heavens!  I seem to be the only person who’s been concerned about it for months.  He attributed it to the hardware.  Later, when the Mr. and I were discussing this and we looked at my x-ray again, we could see that the long pins on the inside of my ankle are located exactly where the swelling is.  It finally made sense!  It’s no wonder that I’m in a lot of pain and still have limitations.  I literally cannot move fully because I have pins holding me back.

Duh!

My doctor was so nice though.  He said, “I’m going to take ALL of the hardware out.”

My jaw dropped.

I told him, “I’m not trying to be greedy.  I actually like having the other stuff there.  It makes me feel more secure.”

Nope, he said.  If he’s going in there, he’s taking it all out.  He said that this will make the swelling on my ankle go away once everything is healed.

Yay!

I’ll have to wear a boot for four weeks after the surgery, but I’ll be weight-bearing immediately.  I was shocked.  I said, “So, I’ll be walking out after surgery?”

He laughed and said, “Not exactly.  You’ll be woozy from the surgery.”

“So, I’ll be holding onto my husband as I wobble out?” was my response.  He laughed.

He told the PA who was with him to schedule surgery.  That’s when I told him that his nurse had already tentatively put me on the schedule for December 21.  He seemed surprised.  Y’all, I like to have all of my ducks in a row!  Plus, I had been afraid that he’d get booked up, so I went ahead and had the nurse take care of this for me.

Ha!

We have a half day at school on December 20th, which will give me time to mentally prepare for surgery the next day.  By doing it during the break, I’ll have two weeks to get stronger before school resumes in January.

The doctor assured me that recovery will be much easier this time around.  Of that, I’m positive.  I don’t know that anything will ever compare to breaking an ankle and the pain involved with that.  Everything else pales in comparison.

So that was big news . . . a bit surprising and a teensy bit unnerving.  As I said, I actually like having some of the hardware, although going through metal detectors at airports will be a lot easier now!

I then began the drive home, exhausted but satisfied.

Of course, I thought of a number of questions after I got home . . .

I’ll run through these when my doctor visits me before he performs surgery.  He’s always incredibly patient when answering questions.

Y’all, the week wasn’t over though!  I still had Friday to get through!  Oh my!  This past week was Homecoming, so things were even crazier at school with kids getting ready for the dance, themed dress-up days, presentations of candidates and a parade, and the game on Friday.  Plus, I’d been coming down with a cold, so there was that.  Still, I was determined not to let those things stop me from attending the game . . .

It was a humid evening; I’m so glad I didn’t bother to straighten my hair!

The Homecoming queen wound up being a young lady I taught two years ago.  She was dressed up so fancy that I didn’t even recognize her!  I wanted to hug her after the game but couldn’t find her.  I’ll catch her at school.  I’m so happy for her!

We lost the game in a nail-biter than came down to a final field goal by the other team with five seconds left in the game.  Our boys were crying after it was over.  I tried my best to cheer them up as I hugged them and gave them high fives afterward.  I love them so.

Saturday, I got up early and walked three miles.

My ankle felt a lot better than it had the week before.  I know the shorter distance helped a lot.

I did feel pretty yucky from the cold, which had led me to sleep poorly Friday night.  I pulled out my essential oils and kept them going all day . . .

I did some baking, which I think I’ll talk about in a different post since this one could be a book on its own.

Then, I watched college football the rest of the day.

I wound up staying home from church today (Sunday).  I’m still not 100%; the severity of the cold is a bit muted, but it’s still annoying as all get out.

That’s basically it for these past two weeks.

Though I’m progressing, I continue to learn more about myself while making stupid mistakes (like walking too far or cooking for too many hours in a row).

If you would begin praying for the surgery I’ll be having in a scant 81 days, I’d sure appreciate it.  While I don’t relish the idea of having both sides of my ankle cut into again, I am looking forward to hitting the next phase of recovery so that, at some point, I can finally put this part of my life behind me.

Week 44

Week 44 of my trimalleolar fracture recovery started off in an interesting way.

We were bracing for Hurricane Irma.

Oh, we weren’t in its direct path, but we still weren’t sure what it was going to do.  If it went into the Gulf, we knew we’d be in trouble.

Because it was such a large storm, the governor had closed all schools.  My district had mandated that schools be closed Monday and Tuesday as well, so I had the day off.

My physical therapist’s office had called the previous Thursday and left a message saying that it would be closed on Monday as well, so that meant I wouldn’t be going in for my regular appointment.

The day was blustery, and the wind howled until mid-afternoon.  We got a little bit of rain, but that was it.

I got on up and did my physical therapy exercises.  I’ve found that my ankle stays flexible if I keep up with these maneuvers even when I’m not at PT.

My in-laws had come over from Big City, Florida to spend Sunday night with us.  They left around 2pm on Monday once they were sure the wind wasn’t going to be an issue.

Now, I am not going to lie.  Not having to go in to school was SUCH a blessing.  This school year is already kicking my behind.  I made the best of the downtime and used Saturday and Monday to get ahead of lesson planning.

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That left me to my own devices on Tuesday.

I worked out and ran errands, overnight oats in tow . . .

I randomly texted my friend, Jane, to see if her school was open.  It was (she’s at the private school where we both spent our first year together), but it just so happened that she was on planning and her lunch followed right after, so I picked her up.  We ran to Panera for a wonderful 90-minute visit.

When I got home, I tried to fix a broken sprinkler head . . .

I had purchased a new one back in April, but for some reason, it had popped off, and I couldn’t, for the life of me, get it screwed back on.  I figured it was user error.

Funny story:  My neighbors pulled into their driveway while I was working, and they came over to see if I wanted to borrow their edger.  Y’all, they thought I was edging my yard by hand with that shovel.

We had a big laugh over that!

I headed back to school on Wednesday.  The kids and I were exhausted!  It wound up being a strange week with lots of yawns.  I spent my entire planning period in the copy room making hundreds of copies . . .

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After school, I stopped by the business where I get my sprinkler heads and was assured that the issue had not been me but the threads.  I bought another one and went home to fix it for good . . .

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Thursday morning, I got on up and worked out . . .

Then, as I got ready for work, I realized that I really did not have shoes to match my dress.  I decided to give flat sandals a go . . .

Now, I’m not going to lie.  This was a bit of rebellion on my part.  I’m not supposed to wear shoes that don’t have support, and I haven’t ever since I got out of my boot, but I’m so flipping tired of not matching sometimes.

When I walked into physical therapy that afternoon, the shoes did not go unnoticed.  Therapists are trained to see every single detail.

My trainer commented on them when I walked past her to the changing room.  I told her that I was pretty sure I’d be hurting later.  She was nice and told me that every once in a while wouldn’t hurt but not to make it a habit.

Ahem.

Physical therapy was hard.  Monster walks are still so tough; my legs need more time to regain the strength I’ve lost over the past few months.

I can’t remember if I did anything new.  I don’t think I did.  We did have a discussion about her upping the intensity of some of my exercises next week while she reduces the number of reps.  I’m glad for this.  It signals progress.

Physical therapy days are long ones for me.  I rarely get home before 5:30 or 6.  Pele had been up to no good . . .

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We’d been trying to let him roam free more; apparently the afternoons prove to be too tempting for him . . . or else that’s when he starts missing us.

I will say that I was pretty sore the next day (Friday).  I don’t know if it was from the sandals or the extra hard PT session the day before, but my ankle did not feel good all day.

Pele was feeling my pain . . .

When I got home from school, I hunkered down and got all of the stuff you see in my bag graded.  I even uploaded the grades and sent reports to parents . . .

I went to my school’s football game that evening, and if I could have put my hands on a pair of crutches or a scooter, I would have.

The evening was gorgeous; my ankle was not.

I was limping so bad by the end of the game that I could hardly stand it.  In fact, I could barely put weight on it period.

Ugh.

I’d spent sixteen hours on my feet – way too long.

When I got home that night, I collapsed in my recliner, watched Big Brother, and then dragged myself to bed where I slept until nearly noon.

Sleep did the trick, though, and I was able to work out before I settled in for a day of college football.

Pele didn’t stray far from my recliner on Saturday . . .

Honestly, I don’t think I even walked a mile around the house on Saturday.  That’s how exhausted I was.  I was so glad that I’d done all of my planning and grading beforehand; my brain could not have focused on anything school-related.

On Sunday, I’d intended to get up and walk three miles, but when the alarm went off, I went back to sleep until 8, when it was time to get ready for church.

I did manage to do my PT exercises after church.  I’m so glad too, because when I was doing one of my stretching moves, my ankle – where pressure had been building – popped.  This popping always relieves the pain.

I did some baking . . .

Almond Meal Donuts for the Mr.

Apple Muffins with Cinnamon Streusel for me . . .

Pele stole one of the Mr.’s donuts when we were Facetiming with Rooster . . .

We caught the pup red-pawed.  Turd.

So, the week was a good one.

Oh, I almost forgot to mention that I was able to schedule an eval appointment with my ankle surgeon.  I go in next week.  I am tentatively scheduled for another surgery December 21st.  I want two or three pins removed from my ankle.  These are the pins that are giving me fits when I wear my sneakers and when anything rubs against them.  They are on the boniest parts of my inner and outer ankle.  I am praying that the doctor gives me the green light to proceed.  By the time he does the surgery, I’ll be thirteen months out of my injury, which from all that I’ve read is ample time for healing to have occurred.  By having the surgery during Christmas vacation, I’ll have a good head start on recovering before school resumes in January.  I’ll also have a chance to return to physical therapy to start regaining flexibility in my ankle again.  I have a feeling I’ll be in PT forever!  Ha!

As always, I’m #findingjoyinthejourney and thanking my heavenly Father for the healing He’s graciously allowed thus far.

Weeks 42 and 43

Hello, my name is Nathalie, and I’ve been a terrible blogger of late.

The beginning of the school year is always hectic.  This one has me feeling a bit like a new teacher, but that’s a post for another day.

I never got around to blogging about my trimalleolar fracture Week 42 recovery, so I think I’ll combine the past two weeks into one post.

Sound good?

Ok then!

Overall, I’ve had a pretty good couple of weeks.  Week 41 marked six months of being in physical therapy . . .

I’m usually there between an hour and a half and two hours, twice a week.

The time is more than worth it; this is something I could never do on my own.  I knew, immediately after the diagnosis of my fracture (and a Google search), that I’d be in this for the long haul.

My trainer’s plan of advancing me slowly seems to be working extremely well.  She usually gives me a couple of visits before introducing harder moves to ensure that I’m not experiencing extra pain and discomfort.

One of my new exercises during Week 42 was a modified version of the bridge.  I had to get on my back with my knees bent.  Then, while holding my core up in the air in a bridge position, I had to bring one bent leg toward me before returning that foot to the mat.  I alternated legs each time.

Yes, those are pearls you see in the photo.  I wore them with whatever my outfit was that day, and I didn’t want to lose them, so I left them on, with the workout clothes I’d changed into, during physical therapy.

I’m classy that way.

In between physical therapy days, I make sure to do some of the exercises at home to help with flexibility . . .

My second PT visit during Week 41 had me doing a couple of new exercises.

One was partial squats!!!  I cannot even tell you how excited I was about this!  I have not been allowed to do any exercises that resemble my old leg workouts.

My trainer had me doing the half squats between my monster walks.  Talk about butt burn!  I felt amazing!

Then, she showed me another new exercise . . .

For this one, I had to stand on that board (I want one of these so bad), sit myself in a squat position with my rear end poked back, and touch my left heel to the floor in front of me while bending my right knee slightly.

I’m not going to lie.

This was extremely difficult and painful.  By the fifth rep, I was done.

Oh, and I was supposed to do it while balancing myself, but I couldn’t.  We had to move the board beside a table so I had something to hold onto.

I may have teared up.  I felt like I was back at square one – especially after my trainer demonstrated the move for me and made it look super easy.

It wasn’t.

I’d definitely hit a wall in what I could do.  When I tried to do it with my left leg, I was fine . . . evidence of how far I still had to go.

It was discouraging, but hey, if I could do everything, I wouldn’t need physical therapy, right?

I was in a lot of pain the rest of the night, but by the next morning, I was feeling a little better and was back up early stretching my tendon . . .

I don’t normally work out in my pajamas, but heck, I just didn’t feel like changing into shorts.  Ha!

That weekend, I tried, again, to do the one legged bend move, but I just could not do more than four or five . . .

That Sunday, I was determined to get up and walk.  I wanted to start on the newest Hogwarts Running Club’s race, the Platform 9 3/4k race.

I had promised my trainer that I wouldn’t do more than three miles.  I did a bit over that but only because I needed to get home!

It was a beautiful morning; the sunrise made getting up early totally worth the effort!

I kicked up my feet and relaxed the rest of the day.  I was a little extra-happy because I didn’t have to work the next day (Labor Day) . . .

Even though I didn’t have PT that Monday because of the holiday (and the first day of Week 43), I still got up and worked out . . .

I’d finished the Body Beast program, but since I’m limited on the kinds of workouts I can do, I decided to do another round of this program.

I really like building my muscles, and the calorie burn I get each day is rewarding.

I indulged in some pool time afterward – what will probably be the last for the year . . .

The rest of the week saw me working out (duh).  I like to leave things prepped the night before.  This helps speed things up at o’dark 30 in the morning . . .

I had therapy on Thursday where my trainer added some new exercises.

For one, I had to put a band around both of my feet while I was on my back on a table.  Then, with my legs in the air (this was a great move for core work), I had to pull one knee toward me, with my foot flexed upward, and then push it back while keeping the other leg straight out.  The purpose was to stretch the front of my leg, along my shin bone.  This is another area where I experience pain sometimes.  The hope is to increase flexibility.

Another exercise that really excited me was the one where I got to step up onto a box and then step back down.

This may not seem like much, but I have continued to struggle with stairs.  When I go up, leading with my right foot (my bad ankle), I have pain because it hurts to push into that foot.  When I step down, either from my left or right foot, I have problems from either an inflexible right knee or a weak right foot that doesn’t want to stretch behind me.

My trainer said that the box move is a pretty advanced one – that I’m progressing very well.

Y’all, my heart really sang at that.

I left PT in high spirits and attended my school’s football game, which had been moved up from Friday to Thursday because of the hurricane.

Just look at the sunset God blessed us with . . .

We didn’t win, and my ankle was sore after being on it for over seventeen hours.  It’s a good thing that school got cancelled for Friday because I needed to take it easy!

I did manage to get up on Saturday and do the second part of the 9 3/4k . . .

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The weather was a bit chilly, but I warned up a half mile into it.

I pushed myself pretty hard during this walk and wound up with a 15:35 pace!

I can’t wait to get the medal for this because I know how hard I worked for it!

I gave myself a good stretch when I got home . . .

That pretty much rounded out my week.

I feel as though I’m turning another corner in my recovery process.  Although I still experience near-constant pain of some sort, it’s manageable.  The biggest thing I’ve noticed is that I am able to get out of bed in the mornings and walk well . . . until the reality of a day on my feet hits.  🙂

I did send an email to my surgeon’s nurse last week to inquire about having a second surgery this fall.  I am pretty desperate to have two or three pins removed.  The ones I have in mind cause a lot of discomfort, and I feel as though having them out will diminish the pain I experience every day and may help me edge closer toward a total recovery.

I will have to go back to the doctor for an evaluation to make sure it’s do-able.  I do know that I won’t be able to have the surgery during Thanksgiving week, as I’d hoped, because the doctor will be off then, so I’m hoping for Christmas, which will actually allow me time to heal before going back to school in January.  I’m just praying he gives the okay because my bones are in pretty bad shape still.

Please continue to pray for me.  This healing process seems to be speeding up, or maybe that’s just the illusion of time.

Either way, I am beyond thankful for every single step I can take without the use of a crutch or a scooter.

I’ve been watching Big Brother, and watching Christmas recover from the foot she broke ON THE SHOW has given me chills.  She’s currently walking with one crutch and a boot, and I totally remember doing that as though it was yesterday.

The struggle was REAL, y’all.  In fact, I was still walking with a crutch when I started physical therapy in January, so it’s fresh on my mind.

I’m kind of glad because it means that I’m not taking anything for granted.  I have much to be thankful for and continue #findingjoyinthejourney.

Week 41

Week 41 of my recovery journey after breaking my ankle has come and gone.  Let’s check on my progress, shall we?

I went to physical therapy on Monday.  I did my regular stretches for my hamstrings and Achilles tendon.

I was actually feeling pretty good for a Monday (the first full week back at school too).

J, my trainer, had me try a new balancing exercise.  She put me on two disks that I had to stand on for two rounds of three minutes.  It was a little harder than I’d expected.  I was a little surprised though because back when I was doing my PT during the spring, I was balancing on a disk on one foot and had gotten pretty good at it.

By the end of therapy, things started going south.  I don’t know what happened, but one of the exercises pushed my ankle too far, and I suddenly experienced a lot of pain.  Despite having the STEM and ice therapy when I finished, I limped out of there.

I was pretty sore for the next few days, but when I went back in for my second weekly round of therapy on Thursday, I was feeling pretty good again.

My trainer has been extremely pleased with my progress, so she decided to up the ante a bit . . . in the form of a thicker towel for my stretches.

Go ahead and laugh, if you want, but sometimes it’s the little things that mean the most.

We have been taking BABY steps in my rehab this go-round to allow my body to slowly adapt itself to new moves – moves non-injured people take for granted.

J also added in some new exercises on Thursday.  One of them was monster walks.  I had to put a band around my knees, slightly bend myself into a squat position, and take small steps in one direction with my legs spread out hip-width.  As I stepped, I had to push my knee over my ankle sideways.

I moved to the left first, all the way to a pole that’s in the back room.  The, I repeated the walk but to the right.

My butt and thighs were BURNING, and I actually worked up a sweat.  I did another round.  The push to my right was the hardest on my ankle.  That’s the side that I have the plate, and it’s also the side that had the longest break.  It’s not nearly as flexible as it used to be.

Another exercise I did that day was a semi-lunge, which I’d been forbidden from doing during my home workouts.  J put me in a lunge position, with my right foot on the floor, knee bent, and my left leg bent with my knee on the floor.  Then, I had to push into my right heel to raise myself, straightening both legs in the process.  I repeated this ten times, going up and down in the process.

It was pretty tough.  My heel has a lot of pain still because of the tendon issues, but it felt so wonderful to be doing a “normal” exercise.

I repeated this on the other side, and it was hard for different reasons.  With my right foot behind me, I had to push with those toes, which required more strength from that foot (along with balance).  I was very hesitant.  My confidence has been shot over the last few months; my balance is definitely not what it was before I got hurt.  I did another set of ten.

Then, I did one more round.

Yay me!

One other exercise that I got to do for the first time was bridges with a twist.  With my hips raised, I had to alternate lifting one leg and then the other, knee bent each time.  This made me put more pressure on each foot and worked on my core.  I liked this move.

I went through my other exercises and ended my session with ice and STEM, the very best things ever!

I’ve had a pretty good weekend with my ankle.  Taking it a little easier on the days I’m not at work has become especially important in my recovery . . . a lesson I’m finally learning.  I can really feel it when I push too hard, like when I walk through Sam’s Club or Walmart.  My ankle yells at me pretty loudly.

So that’s it for this week.

Joy was so easy to find this week; the pain much more manageable despite doing a LOT of walking while I taught five straight days.

God continues to amaze me with His gracious provision and healing touch.

Weeks 39 and 40

Y’all, it’s Week 40!

That makes it sound like it should be ten months; however, I counted on my fingers, and it’s only been nine months (November 13th to today).  I’m not a math person, so I’ll leave you to figure out how 40 divided by 4 (a typical month) equals ten, but it’s only been nine full months since the break.  Whatever.

Crazy stuff (both my inability to do math and the fact that time is flying by)!

Shall we move on?

Ahem.

Well, I never got around to blogging about Week 39 because of a little something called work (and the fatigue that quickly ensued).

Let’s see if I can combine both weeks.

I actually did start writing about Week 39 (I found the post, already started, when I came back to blog).  Ha!  So, here goes.

Week 39

I was a little nervous going into physical therapy on Monday because that was my first day back to work.  Even though I’d been sitting in meetings for most of the day, I figured that my ankle would be all frozen up and difficult to work with.

I had, however, worked out my back and biceps that morning, so there was that.

Not bad for a 5am workout, eh?

So, back to the PT thing.  I warmed up, and my ankle felt pretty good.

Then, I did my not-so-favorite exercises . . . calf stretches . . . six minutes of pain.

My trainer walked me through some of the same moves as last week, but then she added a few new ones.

I’ve already described using my heel to pull back an exercise ball while my trainer holds a resistance band.  Well, on Monday, she stood at my feet and held that same band.  I had to flex my foot and pull the ball toward me with my heel (the same move as before), but I had to pull against the resistance band.  The purpose was to stretch the front of my lower leg.

Yeah, I felt it.  It was, by far, the most difficult thing I’ve done so far.  My hamstrings were on fire when I finished.

She also had me do some bridge lifts (feet flat on the mat while lifting my pelvis in the air).  I had to do this move with my right foot in three different positions – turned in, neutral (straight), and turned outward.  She was gauging my tolerance.  I had no pain whatsoever, which she thought was good.

The final exercise I did involved me standing with my right foot up on a platform.  I had to position my left leg behind me, kind of in a lunge stance.  Then, she put a resistance band around my right leg and held it tight from my left side.  I had to lean forward into a bit of a bend while pushing my knee to the right in the opposite direction from the band.  I held the stretch for three seconds before leaning back into the neutral position.  This was a bit painful.  We analyzed when and where I was feeling discomfort.  She tailors my regimen according to such details.  I just adore her, if you couldn’t tell that already.

After that, it was time for ice and STEM treatment, and I felt pretty good when I left.

I spent Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday of that week toting items back to my classroom before my all-day meetings started.

I sat in training Tuesday afternoon, answered a question and earned a ticket for a drawing, but didn’t win anything in the end.

I did some eating out . . . two days in a row . . . at my favorite Thai place . . .

By Wednesday of that week, I felt like I needed the following to help me find my way to the surface.  I felt like I was drowning in new information . . .

Thursday morning, I was singing a new tune though, attitude well in hand, after going to bed at 9pm the night before . . .

I couldn’t tell you what I did on Thursday, besides sit in more meetings.  I did have physical therapy that afternoon.  It must have gone well because I was still smiling afterward . . .

Or maybe I was smiling because I didn’t have to work the next day.  My district has four-day work weeks during the summer, and that week of planning was the final one with the special schedule.  I could totally do short weeks!

I got up Friday and mowed the back yard.  It hadn’t been cared for in over a month because the mower had been in the shop getting a major overhaul.

Before

After

Pele approved . . . of the yard and the fact that I was home . . .

I managed to get my workouts in each day.  One thing I’ve been more cognizant about is taking it easier on my rest days.  No, I don’t fully rest, but I do slow down and make sure I’m going through some of my physical therapy exercises.  I manage to burn some calories, thus satisfying that need inside of me, while stretching out my tendon and hamstrings.

That weekend, Freeform hosted another Harry Potter Marathon.  I was pretty much glued to my TV on Saturday and Sunday . . .

Why do I always turn it on at the saddest parts?? Oh my!

Week 40

Last Monday started Week 40.  I headed back to school for three days of room prep (with the exception of one department meeting).

I’m not going to lie – I didn’t get much accomplished.  I did manage to get my new cell phone pocket holder hung up, along with my cell phone procedures and an informative graphic . . .

It was hot as the place down under (and I’m not talking about Australia) as I went back and forth between buildings . . .

I had physical therapy that afternoon . . .

I was hurting pretty good that day.  This time, it was the underside of my heel, which only got worse the longer I was working out.  J, my trainer, told me she would work on my foot, but before she did, I got to go upstairs (cue the angels singing) to the big girl section, and play with some battle ropes . . .

She and my other physical therapist were actually impressed with how strong my upper body was.  Heck, I told them, since I’ve been forbidden from doing lower body workouts, I’ve got no other parts to exercise at home!  Ha!

J also showed me how to use a foam roller.  I’d been reading about how good they are for working out kinks, of which I have a lot.

Then, I went back down for my foot “massage.”  Ahem.

After whipping up a pot of 8-Minute Pantry Dal, a recipe by Angela Liddons, I watched some TV.

I went to bed super early.  Getting ready for a new school year while rehabbing an ankle is tiring business!

Tuesday morning found me up before the birds, doing my regular workout . . .

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Yeah, that getting up early thing . . . not my favorite and not something I’ll miss when I get to retire in the next century.  Ahem.

Tuesday was all about working in my room, discovering supplies I needed to buy to get organized, shopping, and going back and working some more.

All the while trying my best not to overdo things on my ankle.

Each class has its own color . . . because I’m an overachiever like that.

I added pencils to my cell phone organizer so that no kiddo can tell me that he/she doesn’t have something to write with.  Did you know that sharpening three dozen pencils takes FOREVER, even with an electric sharpener??

I went home at 3 but spent the better part of the evening working on lesson plans, mindful of keeping my foot up . . .

Wednesday was crunch time.  I started out with a good stretch of my muscles . . .

I knew that it was going to be a LONG day on my feet.

I sported wild hair to match my anxiety level . . .

Don’t ask me specifics about that day.  All I can say is that the Lord is good, and He made it all come together by the end of the day.

I went home exhausted and hit the bed early because THURSDAY was my first day with kids.

I’ll share the details of that for another post, but I did have physical therapy after school . . . on my first day.  I wasn’t supposed to go in until Friday, thank you insurance for messing up my routine, but the PT office called me as I pulled INTO SCHOOL, thank heavens, and asked if I could go in that afternoon, so I parked in a spot that wouldn’t have me locked in to the parking lot (allowing for a faster exit later that day).  The Mr. kindly took my PT clothes and sneakers to the school because I wasn’t going to have time to run home and get them.

I am not going to lie.  By the time I walked in to PT that afternoon, my foot was a hot mess.  The bike warmup was not fun.

As I did my stretching, my tendon and hamstrings were as tight as they’d been when I started going back to therapy.

My ankle was pretty swollen by the end of my session.

I was still pretty stiff on Friday.  You can see this in the picture below.  I could barely bend my right knee for one of my stretches (see how far I can bend the left one?).

People who aren’t in education (i.e. parents) often complain because we start school on Thursdays each year, but honestly, I don’t think the students or teachers could handle more than two days at first.  My ankle was mighty happy when I got home Friday afternoon after having me limp on it all day.

Overall, I’m feeling okay.

I did have more pain these last two weeks, but I expected that because of the start of school.

I am even more grateful that God put me with the trainer I’m currently working with.  The fact that she’s pulled back on the intensity of my exercises has helped so much.

I haven’t gone on a walk in over two weeks, and I think that’s helped reduce some of the intense pain I’d been feeling before.  I’ve also been taking it a little easier on my “rest” or “leg” days, so that’s helped give me regular breaks.

I’m realizing that my gung-ho attitude, while good in some ways, has probably hampered my progress to this point.  There’s such a fine line between pushing myself and pushing past an acceptable limit.

So, that’s my two weeks, in a huge nutshell.  Ha!

I know that this week will probably be tough since it will be my first FULL week with kids (i.e. little to no breaks during the day).  I hope my ankle holds up okay.

As always, I’m #findingjoyinthejourney and so grateful for each step forward that God allows me to make.

Week 38 – Reset

Today marks 38 weeks since I broke my ankle.  It also marks my second week back at physical therapy since my month-long hiatus (forced upon me by insurance).

You might recall that my previous post was one big pity party.  I couldn’t help it – I’d had a horrible week beset with a lot of pain.

Well, this week was so much better!  Although I wasn’t pain-free, the level I experienced was down a lot.  I suspect a big reason for that was the REST day I actually allowed myself on Sunday . . .

It was supposed to be a leg day, but I’d been asked not to work this part of my body at home, so I actually complied.  I had thought that I would go for a walk, but I wound up sleeping in a little, and then the Mr. and I kept pretty busy after church.  By the time the evening rolled around (when I thought I might still sneak in a walk), I was too tired.

So, my ankle was fairly well rested.

I arrived at physical therapy on Monday raring to go.

As always, I warmed up on the bike . . .

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The athletic trainer I’m working with had been doing her homework, so she was ready for me.  I’d sent her a link for the Body Beast workout sheets that detailed the exercises I’d been doing.  She had made her own list . . . of things she didn’t want me to do right now . . .

Y’all, I just about died.

That’s a crap ton of moves . . . that I can’t do!

She explained that we are doing a “Reset.”  Like I mentioned in my previous post, we are going back to basics and will work our way up from there.

She wants me to get back to being able to do easy moves with no pain and then proceed, slowly, to harder moves.

Slowly is not a word I use very often, unless I’m talking about my running speed.  Ha!

So, I started out by doing stretching moves to help me get my hamstrings flexible again . . .

Two moves involve me putting my feet on this board while keeping a rolled towel between my thighs, raising my hands over my head, and sliding them down, very close to my body all the way down to my toes.  After holding them by my toes for three seconds, I have to slide them up again and start over.  After thirty reps, I moved so that my heels were on the board with my toes on the floor and repeated the movement thirty times.

This might not sound difficult, but this girl was really feeling the burn in my hammies.

The next move involved me standing in a band of sorts, walking forward until it was stretched tight, and then sliding my arms up and down, reaching for my toes, thirty times.

I also had to do the move from last week where I held onto the stick at the front of my right foot and leaned my foot forward with my knee moving to the outside of the stick, thirty times, to stretch my Achilles tendon.  I did this exercise with my right leg bent on the floor, stretched by a smaller band, while leaning forward to stretch.

I felt a bit like Gumby.

I did some other work in the main room on a mat using a band to do windshield wipers to help with my range of motion.  I also had to do some pulling and pushing band exercises.  Then, she had me do some work with an exercise ball (I’ll show you a picture in a sec).

After all of that, it was “Tool Time” because my tendon was knotted up . . .

This has to be one of the most painful things I have to endure at therapy; my bruises stick around for a week or two every time I get the “tool.”

My ankle was a bit swollen after all of the hard work I’d done that day . . .

I was rewarded with a heating pad and ice, with STEM treatment underneath . . .

I’m pretty sure that I spent a few hours at the pool after therapy, but I didn’t take a picture!

On Tuesday, I got up and walked four miles . . .

It was not an easy walk; I was sore most of the way, but I pushed through.  This was the day when I had the most pain.  I even considered sending the following picture to my surgeon’s nurse to ask if I needed to go in . . .

That’s the area where I’m experiencing the most pain, and it’s different from the pain I’ve had before.  It’s a very confusing thing.

I am not one to be held back for long, though, and I really wanted to work in my classroom, so I headed out after my walk, with a stop at Chick fil A first.  They gave me two extra boxes of hash browns, y’all, because they said that they had extra.  I wound up eating only two of them but still!

I tried not to overdo; my main goal was arranging the furniture.  Here’s how my room looked after a couple of hours of work . . .

After that, I figured I’d earned a trip to the pool . . .

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What a great way to relax!

Wednesday was supposed to be a cardio day, but my PT had, in essence, removed almost all of the exercises I could do, so I worked out my abs instead and then headed back to school.

I cleaned every single table, counter top, and bookshelf and put more of my room together . . .

I repurposed our old DVD shelving units by loading them up with books . . .

I grouped some of my favorite authors’ books together . . .

I was a little shocked when I got a shout-out by one of my favorite ladies on Twitter.  I totally fan girled, y’all.

See, Allison van Diepen and I have been friends on Twitter for a few years now – ever since I sent her an email about how much one of my students had loved a book she’d written.  She’s such a nice gal!  ❤

I’m going to be organizing my students’ work a little differently this year, so that will leave my back counter free for books to be displayed . . .

After all of that work, I needed some water therapy . . .

The forecast was calling for a lot of rain the next few days, so I figured this would be my last chance to read in the pool for awhile.  I accidentally got part of my book wet.  I guess I misjudged where my elbows were.  Ha!

Because I’d taken it a little easier, Thursday’s trip to physical therapy was a lot easier.  I repeated the same exercises with a slight twist on the ball one . . .

The trainer thinks I’m going to be coordinated enough to roll the ball back with both legs at once.  Ha!  We didn’t actually do this one yet (she was actually prepping me to work on my left leg to make sure both leg muscles stay balanced), but she promised that we would be doing this next week.  I told her that she must really need a laugh.  😀

I had a doctor’s appointment Thursday afternoon so I could finally get a prescription to get a bone density scan.

I’ll be talking more about that in a different post once I get the results of that and the twelve vials of blood I had drawn the next day (the rainiest summer day thus far) . . .

It’s a good thing that Friday was my real “rest” day.  I doubt I would have had much energy after fasting for the blood work and having to wait for over an hour for the bone scan.  I think that having two rest days each week is going to be another key to my ankle healing fully.  I might tend to overdo things . . . just a bit.  Ahem.

Saturday had me back to the routine and working out my chest and triceps . . .

All Photos-495

Overall, I am feeling a lot better, aside from stomach woes that are the result of the stress I put myself under with my doctor’s appointment (I do not do doctors very well).

My ankle is almost back to its normal level of pain, which is a good thing because I have to report back to work tomorrow.  We don’t get our kids back until the 17th.  I fully expect my ankle to be a hot mess the first couple of weeks with me being on my feet six straight class periods before my planning time, but that’s really no surprise given the severity of my injury.

Thank you for your prayers and your indulgence last week while I cried.  Some weeks just require tears, while other allow for shouts of joy.  I’m somewhere in the middle this week, which is a good thing.

#findingjoyinthejourney was a bit easier, and for that, I’m grateful.

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