Injury Timeline


Thursday, January 5, 2017

New Year Check-in!

Hello Everyone!  Thank you for riding this healing journey along with me.  I do appreciate all of my readers and people I've found on social media who have found my blog.  Hopefully I have helped you or given you hope in some way.

When I first injured myself, I did what many of you do and sought out the blog world for support.  One of the many common themes was to always see a "new years" post, and I think that's the perfect time to give an update!

2016 was very much a healing year for me.  I didn't feel like myself for quite some time. I started off the year barely out of the boot and still kind of weaning out of it.  I found myself needing it still after a couple of months after being "boot free" because of the pain of walking around.  Finally around the start of spring, I started doing what I loved most, getting back into my gym routine and going hiking!  I for sure had to take it easy, but it was a relief to know I could still do those things I enjoyed.  It was painful at first, and slow progress, but I got myself there week after week.  And as I look back I am pleased of each and every step of progress that I've made this year.

I saw the doctor for a yearly checkup in July and got some great news that my foot was healing awesomely, and that I should still be able to occasionally run short distances again.  It was like the seas parted and my world opened up again!  He said my foot improvements usually peak at a year post op, then level off.  If I'm lucky, at the 18-24 months mark I might start to see improvement again, although not nearly as much as I saw in the first year.  Something to hope for and look forward to at least.

There were still those moments though where I was sooo frustrated with the things I still couldn't do.  I was at a bootcamp/circuit training type class that I attend regularly and could still do most things.  But, this particular class ended with me in tears.  We were doing a "sled push" type exercise where we basically pushed a 35lb plate across the floor from kind of a pike position.  It put so much pressure on my lisfranc joint and was so painful that I had to drop to my knees to complete the exercise and scoot along the floor feeling completely defeated.  To top it off, our circuit stations were on a rotation, and the plate push was the pace setter for the entire class.  So, I felt awful because I couldn't even do the exercise right, and I was holding the entire class up while I was performing the exercise.  Most of my friends at class are aware of my injury and a lot of my limitations, but there was a new girl there, who obviously thought I was just some out of shape slug and was yelling at me to just push harder.  To go harder.  Oh, how I wanted to.  How I tried to.  But I couldn't.  And it brought back familiar feelings of failure and tears, thinking about no matter what the progress I've made, I'm still not my old self.  But those moments are few and far between now.  I recognized that that exercise was difficult for me to do, so I started to slowly work on it on my own, not in a class setting, but in my basement.  Today, I pushed TWO 25lb plates across the floor.  Several times.  So suck it.  I'm a stubborn bitch and don't like failing.

And then, the last thing that I couldn't do..... the single leg calf raise on my injured foot.  Oh how I worked on it.  All year.  But it wouldn't budge.  The muscles wouldn't engage.  I tried nearly every week to progress, and nada.  Every time I tried it was like trying to lift a million pounds in the air.   So I just kind of stopped trying, for weeks.  But, today, TODAY I accomplished a single leg calf raise on my right foot!  Without holding on to anything for balance or assistance with my body weight.  It was an amazing feeling.  I literally jumped for joy!  I guess I really am starting to make progress like the doctor said!  Maybe...just maybe...I'll make more progress in the coming 6 months up to my 2 year post op anniversary.  My foot no longer dictates my life.  I don't hardly think about it anymore unless it's something that I find myself not being able to do.  I still find it frustrating when people ask me, "But like, when will you be healed though?"  Because I still get that.  It's hard response because this could be as good as it gets.  Which I am OK with, but other people seem not to be... hmrph.  I still limp occasionally, and its mostly depending upon what shoes I'm wearing and how active and on my feet I've been throughout the day.  And I still want to punch people in the face when they tell me I need to correct or fix my limp.  I've got a completely different foot now.  A new structure, a plate and 3 screws still.  I'm going to limp sometimes.  It may take a year to go away.  It may take 5 years to go away.  It may never go away.  I have accepted that, it's not an issue for me, and I am sick of explaining that to people.  There isn't a day that goes by however, that I don't have some sort of pain, or at least awareness that my right foot is different from my left foot.  Not in a bad way.  Just that it's there and everyday is a step in the right direction and progress in some sort of way.

And let's not forget that I did Ragnar!  People thought that I was absolutely nuts for even attempting it.  By far, it's my most cherished accomplishment this year.  It meant so much for me to finish that race, no matter how long it took and no matter the physical pain.  I wanted it so much. More than anything for a time.  So, I'm very grateful for my team and my support structure that helped me get through that in November.

So, I'm starting 2017 off right this year.  I feel really close to my old self and pretty much loving my new normal.  My job got really stressful around August when a co-worker of mine left and I absorbed a lot of his work.  It became really busy and I let affect my life a little too much, and I let my health and well being slip a little too much.  More than I'd like anyway.  I am not really a person who does new years resolutions, but I think the new year is just a great way to reset priorities in your life, and maybe change some things that were bad decisions and unhealthy habits.  I sunk into a funk and fell down a spiral leading to a dark place if I didn't fix it.   I am kicking all of that to the curb and refocusing on my health this year, and making sure I carve out time each day for myself and my health no matter how busy my job becomes.  As a very active person prior to this injury, working out was a way to relieve the stresses of the day and the stresses of life.  Without that, I fall into a depression that is hard to climb out of.   I made excuses to myself sometimes, that my foot was a little sore, so I shouldn't go workout, or that I was tired, or this or that, when I should have made more of an effort because I feel so much better doing it.   So, I'm refocusing this year on all of the things that made me happy prior to my injury and doing my best to pretend that my accident never happened!  And of course, spending time with the person nearest and dearest to my heart, my best friend, my rock, the person who has held me in his arms as I cried tears of pain, tears of sadness, tears of frustration, and tears of joy and has shared all the for betters and for worst with me.... my Nate.

Progress is progress.   It may take days, weeks, months, years.  But have hope and you'll get there.   Just take it one day at a time.

As someone recently reminded me, you can't reach heaven until you leave hell behind.

Much love....
CC

2 comments:

  1. Great work CC, very few without can get their head around the severity of the injury even if they have sat with surgeon while he explains. For us, even the little achievements rate up there with Armstrong walking on the moon :) I'm coming up on 5 years since I sustained the injury and I am thrilled with where I am with it, yes everyday I am reminded that I have the injury particularly those first few steps in the morning and on days that I do to much and it causes me to still occasionally limp. But I get to ride my motorbikes, walk on the beach with my wife and daughters and numerous other accomplishments that I thought were behind me. I was out hiking with my brother the day I sustained my Lisfranc as we were preparing to walk the Camino in Spain, the doctor was quiet positive that I had no chance of ever doing it. Well next May I'm planning on walking the Camino in Spain and am already walking around the 8 -15km a day mark in preparation and its day after day so the trip is back on!
    Like you, I get fed up with always having to answer the same questions that I really don't have answers for. I'm happy to be able to wear shoes (obviously not just any) and most days are hassle free.
    Keep up the excellent work and you always have a supporter here.

    Regards Darryl

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  2. Your advice is well taken. I, too, was severely injured and simply thought at the time that it was devastating news. At that time, I thought my world was over. Looking back, that was nothing more than an obstacle that life puts in front of you so that you go around it and take a completely different path in life.

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