Aug 3, 2014

Broken Ankle Diary - The First Week

Broken Ankle Diary Week 1

Entries: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4

In an effort to not write about this every day, I'll be posting my day-to-day thoughts on the broken ankle thing along with status updates on Sundays.  It's not all chipper, for which I must apologize, but really, how positive a spin can I put on a broken ankle?!  (Family members feel free to insert some kind of pun here "No spin at all, it's broken." etc, etc)


Things are getting easier already.  My ankle only really hurts when I accidentally hit it on something, or try to set it down with my leg twisted.  The mornings are the worst, because after a night of being somewhat elevated, all the blood flowing back into my foot doesn't feel so good.

However, I'm getting faster with the crutches, and I can get farther before they start hurting my palms and sides.  A few thoughts on crutches and moving around in a cast:

  • Armpit soreness does not mean you're "using them wrong."  I AM putting my weight on my palms, and not dangling from them like a puppet or something.  But...
  • You have to anchor those suckers, or they'll slip away from you.  This is where your arms and sides come in, and where the bruises come from.
  • I've found the slowest part of crutching around is removing them (to hop up stairs or around an obstacle), and then replacing them (and also changing direction).  So the fastest way to handle it, is to just hop until there's a longer stretch of ground to cover.
  • Crutches and stairs = no bueno.  I'll hold both crutches in one hand and lean on it a bit, while mostly using the other hand on the railing to propel myself up (or down.  Down is so easy!).
  • If I'm indoors, and there's no one to witness it, I go up the stairs on my knees.  No shame!
  • I have not yet decided whether showers or baths are easier.
  • I hope my backpack arrives today!
Oh, and I'd also like to take note of the creative nicknames I have received: Gimpy and Hop-Along.  There were a couple others, but they might offend people, so I won't share.

I'm feeling bad because Significant has to take on so much more now, but I'm figuring out a couple of things I can still do.  I can't bring the laundry up and down stairs, but I can fold it and put it away (mostly).  Dishes are pretty easy (to wash, putting away is harder).  And I can't walk Luke, and I'm a little nervous to even take him out to pee on crutches (I'm still a bit wobbly and you never know when an exciting squirrel or dog will grab his attention), but I can feed him, and with the extra long leash, let him out the back door (we live in a townhouse, so there's no fence or anything), for a few minutes to do his business.


I'm drinking less water.  Both because so much more effort is required to go fill up my bottle and because the resulting trips to the bathroom are like individual odysseys.  Probably not the healthiest thing I could be doing, but oh well.

Oh, I figured out stairs!  You don't hop up, you just raise your lower body using your arms/the crutches until you're above the step.  Unless you've got awesomely buff legs that are not already tired from all the hopping and single leg squats, which I do not.


Wallowing in pain and self pity.


Feeling much better after a bonus half day on Wednesday and a 3 hour nap.  But I'm gonna put a hold on that "try it [the ankle] out every day and put weight on it if it doesn't hurt" advice.  My ankle did not like that.  Maybe next week.

Note: I had so many doors held for me today.  On the one hand, I feel bad and awkward about it, but on the other... it is really helpful!


TGIF!  I mean, work is great and all, but it will be such a relief to not have to go anywhere or do anything.  This leg and I will be doing a whole lot of nothing this weekend.


Cracker Barrel.  Need I say more?  Other than this, we did nothing active - games, and reading, and puzzles.  A good day.


Getting frustrated with having to ask for help all the time.  I can't make a frozen meal, and then travel with it to the couch.  I can't have coffee, tea, or hot cocoa unless I drink them in the kitchen.  If the trash is full and smells terrible, nothing I can do.

On the plus side, I did some stretching and yoga-esque poses with my mom (we were supposed to be doing yoga on Sundays, but that obviously had to be put on hold), and that made the back of my knee feel better for a little while.  My calf/knee has been hurting since Thursday and I don't know what to make of it.

Have you ever had a broken bone?  What did you think was the worst part of having a cast?

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  1. Yes, while hobbling on crutches is a pain, and not having both your hands is free is an issue, the fact that your toes are exposed and peeking out of the cast is an issue when you have to wear just one shoe with a heal to work. I use a sneaker on my good for the commute to work, and switch to peep toe shoe. What has been your experience dressing and commuting to work in cast.?

    1. I guess I've been really lucky in both regards. I live in the suburbs so commuting is really just me driving the 15 minutes to work - no hassle. And for footwear, our office is super casual. Before the leg break I was probably the only one who even wore heels occasionally. Now with the crutches being adjusted specifically for height, and my poor balance, there is no way I'll be sporting heels until the cast is off!

      On the days that I do actually dress nice, I'll wear one of my more comfortable flats, but most days it's short boots (no heel) or even sneakers (a sneaker? I've never used the singular version before).

    2. I still wore flip flops when I was in my cast (or a singular flip flop, I guess). My doctor seemed cool with it, but it made one of the managers at work super worried. I never felt less stable in my flip flop than I did in my sneaker, and I felt more normal having my toes exposed on both feet than just the one.

    3. Oh! I've had that thought, and I do still feel a little weird that my toes are only out on one foot, but I was too worried about traction to wear flip flops. I might try it later on.


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