1. Injuries Suck
It could’ve been worse. A torn Achilles Tendon requires months and months of recovery. I was lucky. I spontaneously ruptured my Plantaris Tendon teaching a really fun Step class. My Orthopedic Dr. and Foot Specialist explained that I had, in effect, performed ‘my own surgery’. Roughly 3-5% of those suffering with Plantar Fasciitis require a surgical technique called endoscopic plantar fasciotomy to relieve pain. I just did it to myself… without my knowledge or consent!
Second only to my 4 daughters and 4 perfect grand children is my passion for fitness and dance. And when I’m passionate about something, it becomes part of my identity. I am movement. I am dance. I am teaching, training and lifting. Although I feel petty complaining about my injury when there is so much suffering in the world, my physical limitations hurt.
2. Patience is not my favorite virtue
We are told it is a virtue, but from my experience, it is an art form I do not possess. I never realized that waiting for my injury to heal would be such a mental battle. Delaying my gratification of intense exercise and crazy new Zumba choreography means regulating the adrenaline and endorphin driven forces within me! My arm pits and hands have been too bruised and chafed from the crutches to even perform upper body movements. A AARRRGGGHH! Joyce Meyer suggests, “Patience is not simply the ability to wait – it’s how we behave while we’re waiting.” Oh, my. I’m 52 ½. I should know better. But, honestly, I considered doubling up on my hormone patches to deal with myself. Menopause + Injury = STAY AWAY FROM ANGIE.
Anyone remember ‘Patience’ by Guns and Roses? “Said ‘woman take it slow, and it'll work itself out fine’. All we need is just a little patience.” I’m fervently hoping I excel from this experience rather than be diminished by it. Check back with me in a few weeks😊
3. Self-reliance has its limits
“Wheelchair, wheelchair passing on the left!” yelled the incredibly sweet Delta Airlines attendant as he transported me to my departure gate. I closed my eyes wishing for a cloak of invisibility that never materialized. Unwanted attention was garnered from well-wishers and empathetic onlookers as well as from gawkers and rude teenagers. I don’t like getting helped. At all. I want to be the one serving, assisting, pushing the wheelchair, opening doors and giving verbal encouragement… ‘Hang in there! You can do it!’ I like that side of the equation best. But I also unexpectedly discovered that allowing others to support me brings a blessing to them. Feeling needed, doing a good deed, picking up a crutch or holding the door to my bathroom stall, generates usefulness and creates joy in others. To make my life easier, my friends Jenn and Chris convinced me to borrow a knee scooter from the Caring Closet in Work Life. At the time I was projectile-ugly crying in my office, and I thought they wanted me to lock myself in that closet. After Jen happily obtained the glorious invention, my friend Pam surprised me and tricked it out. I gleefully dropped my dumb crutches when I gazed upon my pimped ride with pink horns, bells, streamers and mini vanity plates😊 Her smile was almost as big as mine. I am determined to stop stealing blessings.
4. I need more gears
The majority of my life I’ve had 2 gears - 5th and Reverse. I typically go hard, go home, go to bed. Repeat daily. I have not valued moderation in energy expenditure or the need for recovery. Shame on me. I get it now. Embracing a less frenetic pace for the sake of total body wellness is not a concept I have grasped, and the consequences are evident. I’ve implemented Chair Cardio and I will join other brilliant and balanced souls in Yoga Nidra on Wednesdays at 1:15 in GX!
5. Trust and adjust
I wake up every morning have to hit a reset button and work with my new, albeit temporary, normal. I try to appreciate small increments of improvements and look forward to the next. I’ve learned that pain and setbacks are more about my mindset and only as bad as I decide to view them. There are always worse and better days ahead. Life, pain, joy, struggle and success come in seasons. I’m prepared for things to get worse, but trust that I have times ahead so great I can’t even imagine them yet. I believe there is still time for me to become the person I want to be… in spite of myself 😊
Have you been injured and, as a result, learned something maybe you didn't want to learn?