Base on balls

Okay, so I was wrong. My favorite player, the Braves catcher Brian McCann, came through, as he nearly always does for me, and saved the day. NL: 3, AL: 1. Woohoo!

Now. If the Braves can juuuuust win the National League East, and then win the National League pennant, they’d have home field advantage for the World Series…

Is that thinking too far ahead?

By the way, I’m walking again. (Why yes, that’s what we in the journalism industry call “burying the lede.”) (Oh yeah, and does the title of this post make sense now? You know? The baseball term for a walk?)

I’ve had a broken ankle now for four-and-a-half weeks, and I have big red spots under both arms from where the crutches have rubbed my skin raw. I’ve been putting weight on the ankle now for just over a week, and I started shuffling along with the crutches a few days ago. But I just couldn’t bring myself to ditch the crutches and try to walk a few steps unaided. I’d screw up my courage and stick my foot out and then….stop. Cluck cluck cluck.

But I got some inspiration yesterday. My mom took me to my son’s preschool to pick him up from summer daycamp. While I was there, I ran into a woman who told me about how she had to force herself to start walking again after she broke her ankle, and it turned out just fine. And she was allegedly much older than I am when it happened, and she’s never had any trouble with it since. That was extremely reassuring. So this morning, I decided to just go for it. I put the crutches down and put my right foot forward. (Yes, yes, insert cliche here about “just put one foot in front of the other.”) And nothing happened. Well, nothing bad happened. I didn’t collapse or fall over or crumple to the floor. I just…took a step. And then I took another. And another. It worked. I walked! We have walking!

Granted, it was not pretty. The boot is big and heavy, and it obviously prevents me from being able to bend my ankle or foot. So walking with the boot on is very awkward, to say the least. It really is shuffling more than walking. But it’s shuffling without crutches! Get this: I carried my own open-topped container of Diet Coke from the kitchen to the family room. Yeeha! When was the last time I could carry something in my hand without dangling it from two fingers while gripping the crutch handle at the same time? June 13, that’s when.

I’m still second-guessing myself, too. My ankle, even under the rigid boot, feels weak. I’m worried that I’m going to mess it up, even though it’s perfectly normal to be trying to walk on it by now. I keep telling myself that the doctor said that my ankle would “tell” me when it was ready for me to walk on it. “If it hurts, don’t do it,” the doctor told me. And it doesn’t hurt, not per se. It aches a little after I’ve put weight on it for awhile–probably because it’s not used to it. But of course, I’m all, “But it feels weird! That’s got to be bad somehow, right?” And then I remind myself that the doctor also said, “If it doesn’t hurt, you can walk on it.” And then I start to fret about well, what if my pain threshhold is higher than normal, so what I believe isn’t painful actually is painful in a normal person and I shouldn’t be trying to walk on it? I mean, I weathered the pain of a broken bone on the strength of ibuprofen and Tylenol and didn’t even turn to the big gun painkillers, except once.

Hmmm. Perhaps I’m overthinking this. You think?

Anyway, I’m staggering along again. I’m going to try not to overdo it in my enthusiasm for being two-legged again. After all, I’ve still got aways to go. I’m going to be in this boot for a few more weeks, no matter what. Might as well do my best to not end up back on crutches, right?

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About jenniferlarsonwrites

I'm a freelance writer and editor based in Nashville, Tennessee. I have a master's degree in journalism from the University of Maryland and a bachelor's degree in English from Rhodes College. I'm a born-and-bred Southerner who spent a few years in Southern California, a rabid baseball fan and a would-be grower of tomatoes. You can also visit me at LinkedIn or on Twitter at @JenniferLarson.
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