This time last year there were half a dozen milestone birthday bashes to look forward to, a week in Menorca followed by a week in the South of France. I had just completed The Boys of Summer and was about to submit to a publisher. I looked at the year ahead with optimism. Okay life’s not perfect but you have to take the good with the bad and there was a lot off good stuff going on that year.
Sometimes I think it’s just as well we can’t see the future, although in my case, if I had maybe I wouldn’t have landed up in a situation that intruded on most of 2018: my broken ankle. As my consultant’s registrar said, pulling no punches ‘You’ve done the worst possible thing you could to your ankle.’ I’d broken it in not one, or two but three places, resulting in having to have it permanently pinned and plated. And all this because I missed the bottom step on a staircase!
Five individual plasters (I was most upset that OH wouldn’t entertain the thought of me have a pink or blue one), a horribly itchy orthopaedic boot and a walking stick later, I’m well down the road to being back to normal. As soon as this happened to me, that was my goal. I brushed aside all those who very kindly said I could buy one of those ‘pretty collapsible walking sticks’ to keep in my handbag – sorry that wasn’t about to happen! As far as I was concerned the end of my journey was going to see me walking normally. And happily it has.
Getting rid of the stick by early September was the start of yet another phase. Although my right leg was much stronger after being incarcerated in plaster for six weeks, I now became faced with an issue I hadn’t even thought of – balance. At times I felt like a toddler taking their first few steps: wobbly and unsure. I could not believe my balance had been affected so much, but it had. Gradually, however, with daily walks, I gained the confidence which brought me back to normal mobility. The downside was while out walking I had to keep making stops as the ankle would start aching if I did too much. At the same time I knew I had to keep pushing myself to get the joint working properly. No gain without pain!
It’s crazy to say this but when I actually managed a trip into town for the first time on the local bus, I felt I’d achieved so much. It was yet another big milestone to getting back to the life I’d had before the accident. Seven months on I’m continuing to put the ankle through daily physio exercises. Yes it still aches occasionally and first thing in the morning the muscles have to be ‘woken up’. I’m doing regular walks and have joined a gym. Now it’s all about maintaining these routines, keeping positive…oh and watching where I put my feet in future!