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The Journey of a Broken Ankle…

February 19, 2012 by Linda Lee Patterson

Do you know what a bone sounds like when it snaps in half? Just like a toothpick… CRACK

I knew the bone was broken before the x-ray was ever taken. I stood there on one leg, my body going into shock. The sounds of the outside world, coming to me like a Charlie Brown cartoon, “Wa wa wa wa wa.”

The mind is a funny thing…

“It’s my left leg. I can drive myself to the hospital.” Even after all these years, still not wanting to be an inconvenience. Some habits are hard to break.

Slowly the rational thought process comes into focus, “It might not be such a great idea to drive yourself. What if you pass out?” Hmmmm, good point.

I glance down at my legs and the flowered fishnet stockings. “How am I supposed to get down on the ground in this get up?” Deep sigh… I slowly lower myself to the asphalt and my grip on consciousness loosens. “I think I’m going to be sick,” the thought floats up to me as I try to pull something inside to hold me together.

Surrender ultimately comes to me, as I weakly croak out a cry for help; again and again and again.

Finally catching the attention of my maintenance worker, he hurriedly comes around the car, shock registering on his face as he sees me sitting on the black top.

What transpires then is a comedy of thoughts. He attempts to lift me up, not realizing the tenacious hold on reality going on inside of me. I groan and ask him to stop. He can barely hear my words. I lay my head on his strong chest, trying to pull some strength from him. The tears have not even started; I’m so detached from my feelings. I attempt to get my good leg underneath me, holding tightly to his broad shoulders. “Lift me when I push up with my good leg,” I whispered.

We worked together to get me upright. Again, reality swam before my eyes as I gently laid my head against his broad chest. “This is so inappropriate,” I thought. “I’m his boss. If someone sees this, the tongues will be wagging.” Why does the mind think so logically when all I’m trying to do it hang onto a thread of awareness?

Finally, he got me into the cab of the 4Runner, Smokey, and drove me to the hospital. The tears are flowing steadily down my face now. The pain takes my breath away. I keep repeating to him, “I know my leg is broken.”
When we arrived at the emergency, the nurse quickly assesses the situation and wraps my ankle up tight. The pain slowly decreases as we sat in the waiting room.

I know the quickest way through my pain is to distract myself. I start talking to my maintenance worker about his daily tasks. We start joking and laughing. He looks at me at one point and says, “Are you sure your leg is broken? I think it might just be sprained, you seem to be doing so much better.” I smile and wink at him, “Yes, I’m sure.”

Finally, I am brought into the emergency room and put into a bed. We continue to joke and carry on. What else are you supposed to do when you’re in emergency, waiting for someone to fix a broken bone? I’m making phone calls, answering my emails and generally working.
They came to get me for x-rays and as two pretty ladies push my bed into the room, they comment on my painted toes. “Your toes look great. We don’t get to see feet that look that pretty very often. Your hair also looks beautiful,” they gush. I smile and giggle inside, “Ladies, if I knew I would impress you this much, I would have put on lipstick before I came in.”

The x-ray confirms what I already knew. The bone is broken, completely in half.

The long process of being helpless; unable to pretty much do anything to take care of myself begins.

The first few days, I stubbornly thought, “I can do this,” as I grit my teeth and refuse to ask for help. After 1 ½ days of that, I knew I had been beat. My days of being self-reliant had come to a crashing halt.

Through the proceeding weeks, my feelings went from gratitude for all those who stepped up to help me and juvenile impatience. My close friends would laugh at my discomfort, reminding me that God has a plan and He was making me softer.

Today, symbolized the end of my transformation. I threw a leg over my beloved Dragon Slayer. Fear cursed through my heart as I wondered if my ankle would hold up. My friend Rik assured me that within 2 ½ minutes I would feel like my old confident self. He was right!!

I spent 4 hours in my Dragon Slayer’s saddle today, scraping the floor boards as I got her low in the curves. The smile on my face lit up the sky and I’m sure it could be seen all the way to Philly!!

It was cold up there in Angeles Crest. A few spots had long strips of ice on the road. I was in my normal tank with my leather jacket and it was not nearly enough layers to keep me warm.

It didn’t matter. All that mattered was I was right where I belonged, in the saddle of my Dragon Slayer. Proving to the world, that if I can change, so could they!!

Brand Loyalty!!

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1 Comment »

  1. Marty Solis says:

    I so remember when this happened to you and the pain you must have gone through. I was then and still today am sending prayers for you to watched over. I know in time we will meet in person.

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