Why you might ask?
On 29th December I had an operation on my left heel for insertional achilles tendinopathy, bursitis and hagland’s deformity in english that means I’ve had a bit of extra bone removed from the back of my heel along with some work on my achilles.
Sentenced to a cast for two weeks and unable to place my left foot down not even to balance.
Exercise has been put to one side at least for another four weeks, only then some light workouts that don’t involve my left heel on the floor, running or power walking is out of the question at least until June-July time, that is, if I haven’t gone stark raving mad by then.
Now the cast has been removed I’m left with one thin leg with no muscle definition and skin that looks like it belongs to a turtle; the other leg looks like its had an amazonian work out.
The cast has been replaced with a rather groovy looking ski boot to make sure the heel doesn’t move.
And just to make matters worse I’m constipated through lack of mobility, if I ever see another prune again I think I might scream.
The simplest of tasks have become a mammoth expedition being immobile means that you are unable to do the simplest of things like a make cup of tea.
Ah, yes I hear you say, surely it can’t be that hard but you try balancing on one leg with crutches whilst trying to fill a kettle.
Now the tea is made most people like to sit down but how do you carry a cup of tea whilst negotiating a set of crutches?
Making the bed has become a bit like climbing mount everest it takes that long and as for my OCD I’ve taken to examining my floors in infinite detail where I find various bits of dust, food and any other tasty morsel. I can’t sweep the floor and trying to use the mini hoover to vac things up is nigh on impossible.
Walking or hobbling from one room to the next is like completing a marathon. I need help to do the smallest of things but on the upside I am getting things done slowly by improvising.
The office chair has become a makeshift wheelchair, I can scurry around using doors and walls to push myself around this means I can carry my rucksack with stuff I need to go from one room to another. I never thought my tried and trusted rucksack would be so useful.
I can’t exercise obviously as the heel is painful and now I have more time in my day, more day at the end to get things done. I’ve questioned my exercise religion, is it all that it’s cracked up to be?
So why am I thankful?
When I was in hospital I saw an elderly lady who had two stumps for legs she was sitting in her wheelchair and laughed when she saw me bumbling around on crutches.
I suggested a straight swap, her wheel chair for my crutches.
She told me that her husband calls her stumpy I said ‘that’s funny so does mine’.
I was thinking how lucky I am because in 6-8 weeks I will be walking again whereas she will never be able too. The elderly lady joked ‘they’ve taken my legs but they can’t take my sense of humour’.
We both laughed and chatted for quite sometime she was a lovely lady, a wife and mother and I realised that as frustrating as it is right here and now, I had no right to feel sorry for myself after all I’ve got two legs this kind old lady will never be able to stand or walk or feel the sand under her feet or the waves skimming her toes.
I’m more aware of how restricted you are by being immobile because of illness or disability and have never taken this for granted probably because every other month I hear or read about a cyclist or runner getting knocked over and either paralyzed or worse, killed.
As we parted company the elderly lady said to me ‘I’ve done all my running, now it is time for me to hang up my shoes and rest, I think I deserve it’.
I hobbled away on my crutches with a wry smile and and tear in my eye and that’s why I’m thankful for.
Because there is always someone worse off than you.