Sunday, March 29, 2009

saint patrick is not my lucky day

Several years ago, I somehow got the flu on St. Patty's day. I lay on the couch in my misery, not sure what to do - as I hadn't had the flu since I was a child. My temp was 99. I decided to sleep a while and I don't remember why, but husband came to check on me an hour later, and my temp had shot to 104. That's borderline brain-baking, so he got me up and said we're going to the hospital. I'm too unaware to protest. We arrive and I stand at the entrance, dazed while husband explains the temperature spike to triage. We don't wait in the lobby, we go inside and a nice lady takes my blood pressure while standing up. I don't remember much, but I saw the numbers go up and up and up, somewhere around 186 and she looked nervous and told me to sit down before I pass out.
They walk me straight to a bed and prod me with a needle to start putting some fluid back in. I've been here less than 10 minutes and I'm already laying down. When I go to the emergency room I do it right, eh?
Couple of pints and some ibuprofen to bring down the temp and I'm given clearance to go home. Now I understand how people die from the flu. It's just that easy.

Fast forward to 2009. I'm hanging with some friends at Sticks in Depot Town for St. Pattys day. I'm under pregnancy suspicion because I'm the only one without a beer. Blow me, I've got a volleyball game at 9:20pm, and if I have a beer it just makes me sleepy. Not good. I leave the group and head to my game. I really love volleyball, and our A league consistently comes in first or second place each season. We were also playing a team that would be a challenge, but a good game.
It was some point in the middle of the first match, and normally when I injure myself I remember the details well, but for some reason this time I don't. I remember that I landed on my right foot wrong, I landed on the side and rolled it, hard. I heard a quick succession of 5 or 6 small cracks from my foot, like cracking your knuckles. Without thinking, I grabbed the net and pulled myself back up, pain quickly radiating from my foot. I don't remember if it was during play, if we got the point, or if the ref called me for being in the net. All those game details are gone. My team surrounds me and I tell them what I did and that it really hurts and I need to just sit for a minute. I hobble to the sidelines, someone puts an ice pack down my sock. And it hurts. Holy hell it really motherfucking hurts.
I once dislocated my knee and in the ambulance I told the man on a scale of 1 to 10, my pain was a 9. I thought somehow, just before you died, that's where you reach a 10. I've been told patellar dislocation is more painful than childbirth.
I'd rate this immediate ankle thing at about a 6 or 7. It fucking just hurts.
I'm pretty good with pain. I broke my finger last year playing volleyball and kept playing. Sprained my knee last november, too. Maybe all these injuries would make me stop playing? Nah. Just pisses me off.
Why can't I just play without getting hurt?
I watch my team play without me and we start losing. I'm sad because I so badly wanted to be on the court. Ankle is not letting up. Pain just keeps on. I know I'm not getting back on the court. I peek at my ankle and it looks like someone stuffed an egg in there. Already a knot of swelling, that isn't a good sign.
I borrow crutches of a girl on the opposite team, who blew her knee out a few weeks ago. My teammate helps me out and I now have to drive to Depot Town to pick up husband and friend. My car is too small to drive left footed, so I brake with the left and gas with the right. It really fucking hurts. I get the boys and make one of them drive home. I just can't.
The next morning husband and I visit my doctor, and they poke and prod at my very swollen ankle. She thinks it's a sprain, maybe be okay in a 3-4 weeks. We have to get xrays just in case. The xray positions my foot in several uncomfortable ways, once grabbing my ankle and causing me to shriek, "OW OW OW OW OW." I mean, what are you, fucking retarted? That part of my ankle is swollen, and I'm GETTING X RAYS. You don't think manhandling me will hurt? Be gentle you fucktard.
This is the second time an x ray tech has done shit like this to me.
Anyway, back to the doc. She comes in and says I actually broke it. We are all surprised. I'm to be fitted with a walking boot and have to return in 6 weeks. The boot. 6 weeks. None of this really sinks in. I'm going through the motions.
I am supposed to fly to Providenciales the next day. I'm given permission to go.
In Provo, we hunt down a second boot at the "government clinic" which looks like something you'd see on CNN if they were talking about poor countries and medical care. I get my boot here for $40. At least I can go swimming.
Walking is a pain. Walking on the beach is way fucking harder than I think it should be. I'm annoyed that my ankle is broken. After the first couple days it pretty much stops hurting. The swelling continues until I have no ankle bones, just flat on each side. I've got... a cankle. As the days go by the swelling goes down and the colors start. Dark purple and blue on one side, purple on the other side, from heel to toe, green on top. Many rainbows of damage in this foot.
I enjoy my vacation despite my handicap and the fact that EVERYONE wants to comment on it. I talked to probably 100 different people. I started making up stories. I told someone I beat up a hobo. Two guessed right off the bat that it was volleyball. That was pretty awesome.
I get home and I finally crack. I spend the entire day being absolutely foul and pissed off. It wasn't at anyone (poor husband) I just needed my day to crack. Maybe crying a couple times, but mostly just fuming the entire day. I'm over that hurdle, I hope.
Five more fucking weeks to go. (Husband needs to stop saying 6 to 8 weeks. In five, I'm having a bonfire and the star will be this goddamn boot.) It's an obstacle to walk, sleep, shower, anything. I should just enjoy this and play video games, watch tv, but I like being active. I don't want to get all squishy and weak. I want to be in shape, but after this I know I'll need physical therapy to put it back to normal again. And a friggin diet to lose the weight I'll put on sitting on my ass all the time. Oh, and I still can't drive! This sucks.
Next year, on St. Patty's day... tell me to STAY HOME!

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