I think I’ve got a textbook case of roller coaster emotions this week. I’ve never felt so out of control and unstable. Having a broken bone and being completely laid up is SO much harder than I ever would have expected it to be. It SUCKS. But it also makes me incredibly thankful that I do not have a terminal case of feeling this crappy. It’s temporary. It feels like forever right now, but it won’t be. It won’t.
The good news is that I’m mostly out of that pain pill induced mental fog that kept me seriously drugged and mostly asleep that first week. The bad news is that I’m just clear enough to really want to do things, but still not be able to. I give myself a pretty small list of things I’d like to do each day and haven’t even come close to finishing anything. And I’m talking things like read a chapter in a book, write a short blog post, stuff three tiny custom order dolls that people paid me for two weeks ago and I really, really want to finish. It’s infuriating and completely depressing how little focus I have, how little energy for anything. The motivation is there – at least in the good moments – and then the limitations of pain pull me back. I hate it so, so much.
Physically, my ankle is doing a lot better. But it’s still taking a massive toll on the rest of my body. It takes monumental effort to get up the stairs once a day to shower. And because the mornings are just too busy with getting the boys to school and everything, I have to take most of my showers at night. I HATE taking nighttime showers. I wake up feeling like a disgusting greaseball anyway and then have to spend the entire day thinking my skin is just crawling with grime and my hair is a horrific mess. I don’t know how many weeks it will be until I feel comfortable enough to do all the shower things on my own. Right now I can’t even put the leg bag on myself, or stand up tall enough to hook up the temporary dog shower hose I have to use to wash myself, or even pick out new clothes for myself. I’m completely dependent on Greg.
The overall discomfort is probably the worst. While the pain in my thigh has subsided a bit, I feel like my hips and back are starting to get completely out of a whack. When I need to get up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night or later in the evenings, I can barely move myself. Every muscle aches fiercely. I’m so tired of sleeping on the couch every night, but it’s the only position I can sleep in for such long hours because the back of the couch is what props my foot upright so I’m not twisted and resting my leg on my incisions. There’s really no alternative for that when my ankle needs to be elevated so high all the time. But I’m not a back sleeper EVER and being forced into that position all day and all night with no reprieve really, really sucks.
Basically, I spend time every day feeling optimistic and hopeful. I convince myself that rest and healing is my absolute highest priority and even if I’m bored out of my mind, it will be worth it in the end. But almost every night, usually around shower time, I have a total meltdown. One night it was because my foot was so swollen I literally thought it was going to burst open. Greg had to very calmly talk me down. Most nights my meltdowns are about how worthless I feel. I feel worthless when I’m running myself ragged day after day after day. Now that I’m doing nothing?? It’s SO hard to feel like I’m enough, just as I am, laying around on the couch sleeping half the day away. I feel fat and gross and helpless. Greg has been a saint for how much he’s had to deal with the last two weeks.
Looking on the bright side of things, I feel like we’ve had more family time than we’ve had in years. Usually, post broken ankle, I would spend basically every night and weekend in a different room of the house doing my own thing while Greg and the boys spent time together. Now I’m in the same room as them. I’m not usually doing anything, but I’m THERE. I’m available in a way I haven’t been in a long time. And I’m learning to appreciate it and them in ways I haven’t noticed in forever. It’s also been difficult because the boys, especially Shepard, continue to make it SO HARD on Greg. Arguing about literally everything. Throwing full fit meltdowns every time Greg puts an item of food in front of him. EVERY item of food. It’s overwhelming and exhausting for all of us. At least this didn’t happen during the summer and the boys still go to school every day! The grandparents have been taking them for extended time over the weekends too.
I don’t have anything super exciting to reflect on from the week, but there were some high points. On Wednesday, Greg went in to work for the first and only time since I fell and my mom came over to watch over me. She did a little light cleaning jobs I requested, went out and got me Culver’s for lunch, and kept me company during an afternoon of Great British Baking Show. She also stayed and made us a full and delicious dinner. The one night in two weeks all four of us sat down and ate without crying or screaming! It also gave Greg some extra time to do some shopping for essentials we really needed.
On Thursday, Laura came over to just hang out with me for a few hours. It was so good to catch up. On Friday night, Laura and Michelle both game over for our postponed Margarita Night. Greg helped with making the chicken meat and the three of us just got to sit and talk all night. It was so fantastic! My first night in two weeks without a meltdown. 🙂 Part of me is tempted to beg people to come visit me as often as possible because it’s a good distraction and a positive thing for me to look forward to. But part of me also hates people seeing me like this. And it’s so hard to ask people over when I can’t offer them anything and I have to spend the entire time trying to keep Annie from jumping all over them, without moving from my spot on the couch. Hopefully a few people will take pity on me and kind of invite themselves over in the next few weeks.
Basically my only real accomplishments this week have been internet related. I spent most of Wednesday making the perfect shopping lists for Greg. I had it all set up to do a grocery pick up at Woodman’s, only to find out you need to schedule more than a day in advance for a pick up. What?! It’s such a huge store in such a busy area! Why are they not prepared for same day pick ups, with six hours in between placing the order and when he would have got it?? So then I had to redo everything, doing a pick up order for some of the stuff at Target and making him a detailed list of where to find everything else in Woodman’s, because Greg never does the shopping, ever. It seems like such a small task, but it really wiped me out!
Thursday we got word from the insurance company that renting a knee scooter would cost us $5/day out of pocket. Presumably I’ll need one for a minimum of another month and it just made WAY more sense to buy a new one. Which is what the medical equipment rep actually advised us to do. So I spent hours on my phone reading reviews, comparing top ten lists, and watching youtube videos, trying to determine the best scooter to buy when I really have no idea how long I’ll need to use it. I ended up getting the same model that my mom rented after her foot surgeries. It came today! I’ve only used it a few times so far, but boy is it fast! It’ll take some getting used to, especially in small spaces. But I think it’ll be so much better than crutches in the long run. As I continue getting stronger every day, it’ll be such a help when I need to do things like get my own lunches and maybe start working again.
Today I spent a ton of time online hunting around for Easter basket fillers. One of my friends offered to do a Target run this week to pick up some smaller things, which is super nice! I’m working on a list for her. But I was also able to find some unique and useful items on amazon and a few other places today. I think after the Target fillers, I’ll be ready! Which makes me feel good because as I keep saying, gift giving is my love language and I NEED those Easter baskets filled well! What I’m not ready for is St. Patrick’s Day. And Pi Day. I’m not sure those holidays will be happening this year. 🙁
Anyway, that’s been my week. It is getting better. But sometimes I feel like it’s harder. There are just so many ups and downs multiple times a day. I’m trying to find ways to make these days count. I know I need to spend way less time staring at my phone. But it’s really been about the only thing I can do. I want to be at my computer, but it hurts my leg so much to be down. I have a laptop, but I can’t find a comfortable position to hold it while my leg is propped up. Which just leaves me with my phone. My lifeline to the world, but also the instigator of so many bad feelings about myself and my situation.
Okay, time to get back to the dreaded couch. New problem today – not being able to sleep. Every time I start falling asleep it’s like my brain has a tiny panic attack and I jolt back awake. I did switch to a different painkiller this morning and I’m wondering if that’s the culprit. I hope not. At any rate, after a whole day with no real napping, maybe I’ll finally pass out for the night!