On January 10, I was chopping up chicken for a stir-fry and, elegant beast that I am, dropped the knife on my foot. This resulted in an ER visit, surgery to reconnect my tendon, crutches, a cast, and finally a walking boot.
Today, I went to the doctor's office to see if I could finally get out of my (really quite comfortable, but sort of insanely robotic-looking) walking boot.The doctor said yes, gave me a few exercises to do at home to strengthen the reattached tendon, and even said I could pretty much do anything physical that I wanted to, as long as I wasn't in pain.
Including running. INCLUDING RUNNING.
That old trope - abscence makes the heart grow fonder - has felt so true these past two months. I'll be honest: I had a few breakdowns after surgery, especially when I was on crutches. It was still snowy and icy here. The first time I lost it, I mis-crutched onto our porch and bit the dust. Poor H. tried to help me up, but I was so distraught that I shouted "Just leave me here!" and started sobbing. Granted, I was hopped up on pain medication and exhausted, but it was harrowing for him nonetheless. It shows how well he knows me that he let me stay there, on my hands and knees, throwing a toddler-sized tantrum, for several minutes. He waited off to the side until I was ready for help. My knee was scraped and bruised, and the last scab is just now disappearing.
After that, I had a few more freak-outs, mostly due to feeling useless and listless. When you can't even do the dishes for fear of accidentally getting water on the floor that you might accidentally slip on with your crutches (true story), it's easy to feel terrible.And running. I had gotten out of the habit over the holidays, letting the cold turn me into a wuss. Right before the accident, I had just started up again, running at the gym at my office a few nights a week. Now it's been two months of next to no exercise and my body is always tired. I'm caught in a cycle of lethargy. But it's begging to go. And if I felt like it, I could run tomorrow, and the day after that, and the day after that. I can stretch out my calf. I can roll my ankle all the way around.
In the midst of my glee, walking confidently and briskly home from the doctor's office, I was listening to one of my favorite shows, RadioLab, and heard the story of Emilie Gossiaux. She was hit by a semi truck while biking in Brooklyn, assumed dead at one point in her hospital stay, and in the end saved by the determination of someone who loved her. I lost it again, sniffling to myself, not caring whether any of the drivers passing saw me. What happened to me was so minuscule compared to Emilie's story, which is beautiful in its own right. But I felt deeply that I had also experienced that kind of love.
It's not just that H was there. It's that he let me work through it, and helped me when I needed help, and recently has pushed me to do more things. He's told me not to worry, that I will be active again, and soon. He encouraged me to spend more time on creative pursuits that only required mental legwork. He let me have my freakouts. And that's only one of the many reasons I'm marrying him.