Tuesday, 26 July 2016

When walking the walk involves limping

For years I have been looking forward to being a little old lady with a walking stick.  Bear with me.  I have no plans to be a darling old wifey never without a sweetie to share.  I'm looking forward to being a complete bitch, untouchable because I'm wrinkly.  The walking stick my weapon of mass destruction.  Ideal for sticking into the spokes of passing bikes, hooking 'accidentally' around ankles and bringing down anyone I don't like the look of and perfect for banging on the counter top when I feel customer service skills aren't what they should be.

Well it would appear I should have been more careful with my wishes.  The universe has decided not to make me wait too long before I get my stick and it's looking like I might be practicing my menacing as soon as it turns cold.

Last October I jumped off a rock onto a dry river bed and managed to completely knacker my ankle in the half metre drop.  I knew straight away it was serious.  The crunch went right through my body and the pain was so bad I couldn't even swear!

At A&E I was told that I hadn't just broken my ankle.  I'd broken it in 3 places, with shattering and dislocated my talus.  While my childhood wish of a stookie was coming true it was going to have to wait until they manipulated the dislocated bone back into place and filled my ankle with metal to hold it together. 

Through the fug of morphine based painkillers and anaesthetic I do remember the Consultant telling me what a mess my ankle was and that this wasn't going to be a 6 weeks in a stookie and then skip off into the sunset injury. 

I spent 10 weeks, off my nut on painkillers, in a cast and started physio on Christmas Eve.  I have got lots better since December.  But I still don't have a dull range of movement, I'm still in considerable pain and my ankle still swells impressively when I spend too long limping on it.

I hoped this was because some of the metal work needed to come out.  Unfortunately, CT scans have shown that the damage to the joint between my tibia and talus is pretty extensive and probably won't get any better.  In short arthritis. 

So my ankle is never getting better.  I have to learn to accept that there are lots of things I can't do or can't do the way I used to, running after the kids will be figurative rather than literal and all of a sudden my stubborn inability to give into pain is going to prove very very useful.

There are plus sides.  I am no longer able to hoover the stairs.  My DM boots are still suitable footwear and now I get to wear them with everything and shrug if g questions my dedication to 90's grunge.  But most importantly I'm confident I can totally pull off a walking cane and I've been looking for an excuse to buy a bowler hat for years....


  1. Oh no I had no idea the damage was this bad! Such a shame! My sister in law has done something similar (2 years ago now I think!) and is just getting back to a few hours as a barista but looks like she won't be able to do much else. Hopefully you won't be getting too much pain, and i know you'll rock that stick! I'd use mine on teenagers ;)

  2. Thanks Hannah. To be honest I kept hoping that I might be able to prove them all wrong and get back into my high heels. Not quite ready to admit defeat just yet but starting to be a bit more realistic about the long term.