Life pushed me down on the playground recently. This is not a metaphor. I actually did fall and twist my ankle a month ago.
It felt like the school-yard bully, some mean girl, came up behind me and smacked me down onto the asphalt. I came up with those hot fast tears in my eyes that come with the question, “Who did that?” I may even have looked around, though I was alone.
Even though I had traipsed all over the rugged terrain of Esalen Institute the previous week (learning about my soul’s camouflauge) wearing these same, potentially deadly clogs, apparently I was due to have my own mini-accident, falling off of Highway One on the way to the Labor Day party.
Ah, the lowly ankle, so taken for granted, and so necessary to comfortable daily living. Unlike other joints, this one gets constant, weight-bearing use.
Anyone who’s lived in uneven rural terrain can tell you how important it is to have coordination, balance and sturdy ankles. Climbing over wood-piles, chasing stray goats, bush-whacking through forests searching for chanterelles, or lugging groceries down stone steps, are just a few of the tasks where losing one’s footing can be extremely inconvenient.
Deciding to practice stoicism (most un-characteristic for me) I didn’t go to the Big Sur Health Center right away. Since piggy back rides from dashing gentlemen only work for the first few hours or so post-injury, the following day I borrowed my husband’s crutches from his ankle cracking last year (a brush-with death-while-pruning event.)
Later that week a Qigong instructor gave me Taoist Liniment to apply religiously to my swollen foot, a dancer friend suggested an arch support, and my dear neighbors brought me a few blessed vicodin tablets. (These same neighbors loaned me a great book, “The Art of Racing in the Rain” a wondrous read for all us dog-lovers out there.)
Now, a month later, I am still hurting, and have learned to love my ice pack. Seems the universe is telling me to put my foot up at the end of the day. However, at this point I am beginning to worry about my caloric intake, since my general pattern of eating whatever I like and breaking a sweat a few times a week has been interrupted. Kind of ominous, as we head in to winter!
Hmmm, nuts and berries, hold the Deetjens Eggs Benedict, for a few weeks at least...