Sunday, August 1, 2010

Ego and a broken ankle

073110 ankle boot1

Attractive, isn’t it? Thursday at work I slipped on a paper that had dropped on the ground, my right leg sliding forward while my left leg and ankle twisted up behind me. (Thankful that I’m flexible and can do splits.) Yowza! It hurt something fierce so I just sat there on the ground for a few moments, making jokes with co-workers who had gathered, putting my arms up in the air with a brave “Ta-da!”

I thought it was just twisted and some ice and elevation would help. By the end of the day, it was still hurting pretty badly. Several co-workers offered to help me, but I kept saying “Thanks so much, it’ll be OK.” When I tried to walk, though, I realized I might need a little help. One friend helped me to the elevator so I wouldn’t have to take the stairs and another drove me to my car. “Are you sure you can drive?” “Oh, yeah, I’ll be OK.” “Call me if you feel you need to pull over and I’ll get you.” “Thanks! I’ll be OK.”

I have a manual transmission, a stick shift, a clutch. It was NOT OK. Every time I had to depress the clutch was like sending electric shocks of pain shooting through my ankle and leg. It actually felt crunchy. Stop-and-go traffic on the freeway didn’t help. “Turn green … turn green … turn green …” I said at every light after I got off the freeway.

I drove to the after-hours clinic, hobbling up to the door. “I’m sorry, the doctor just left. There’s another clinic across the street.” I hobbled back to the car and drove to the other clinic. “Do you need a wheelchair?” My first inclination was to say No, I’ll be OK, but the wheelchair sounded pretty good by then, so I accepted.

X-rays showed that I’d fractured the bone about two inches above the ankle, an unusual break according to the doctor and x-ray tech. When they found that I’d driven myself almost 20 miles on a broken ankle, they looked at me like I was a crazy person. “How are you getting home?” “I’ll drive myself.” Again, the crazy looks. “Do you have anyone at home to help you?” “No, but I’ll be OK.” Again, with the looks and comments like “You’re very strong.”

Thankfully, my daughter called me when I was preparing to drive home and said she and her hubs were in the area (they live 50 miles away) and would drive me home. I accepted. Being strong at this point wouldn’t be too smart. I had to accept help.

This is a good lesson for me. Like the other strong women I know, I am stubbornly independent. Being a single parent taught me to stand on my own two feet and get 'er done without asking others for help. I could always figure it out and take care of things. So it's very difficult for me to accept any help from others. I never want to impose on others or have them go out of their way on my account.

One of the things I’ve been working on is releasing the ego and I see this as part of the lesson. It’s ego that makes me rush to help others, but not accept help when I need it. It’s humbling to accept help from others; even more humbling to ask for help. But I have to. Humility is a good lesson to learn. I have to put aside ego, do what I can reasonably do and allow others to help me with the rest.

My daughter and her family brought me dinner on Friday night and stayed to visit. My precious friend Vicki is lending me her car (automatic) while she’s in Scotland. Her daughter/my goddaughter Taylor took my laundry upstairs for me when they brought the car over. My brother has offered to let me stay at his place where I can use their downstairs suite. The bedrooms are upstairs in my home and navigating the stairs is challenging; I’ve learned to go down on my butt. So I’m going to go and stay with him and his wife for a few days. My neighbor just called and left a message offering to help, too.

I’m being humbled but I’m learning. And I’m grateful this is temporary.



rebecca said...

=( I've been there: three times. I know the feeling! But accept the help Ms. Rose. It is very difficult to do because as an independent woman it is not an easy thing to do; however, you are also a very smart woman and I see that your smarts are overriding your ego. Muy bueno, muy bien!

Sending you much healing energy Rose and wishing a speedy recovery.


dec0r8or said...

Good for you for knowing when to say "when", Rose. It's heartening to know that you have so many people willing to help, isn't it? You're a good person, and you attract good people! :) Take it easy, and let your ankle heal!!

Stacy Wills said...

rose, i am so sorry to hear about your ankle - but glad that you are mending. sending up prayers for a speedy recovery and holding you in the healing light and love of god.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

What a bummer! I hope you have a speedy healing process. Since it happened at work, I hope you can claim workers compensation for the injury and any time off you need because of it.

Rose - The Center of My Self said...

rebecca - Three times! Goodness, girl! I can't even imagine. It's humbling to need help, but everyone's been so gracious. What blessings surround us! Thank you for the healing energy!

Sharon - Yes, a good lesson in learning when to say "when." Thank you!

Stacy - mmmmm ... imaging the healing light and love doing their loving work of healing ... thank you!

Debra - Yup, it'll all go through worker's comp. Right now I'm using my own insurance; HR said that worker's comp and my insurance will figure out the payments so I'm not out any $$$. Grateful ...

Sheri said...

oh my gosh. I'm so sorry you're hurt - but i'm glad there are those around that can and are helping. Angels among us (even when the ego says we can do it ourselves LOL) It's hard, and i can't give any advice on that. I'm a lot like you.

Connie said...

Oh Rose, how I wished that I lived closer to you. I would gladly take care of you. I know how you feel about falling in a public place - especially at work. I did the same thing and quickly got up before anyone could see me. The next thing I woke up with doctors bent over me and was hooked up to all kinds of machine. Scared the s--t out of me. LOL Pain makes me pass out. LOL They made me go the nurses office in HR and on a cart. I pulled the sheet up over my head and tried to hided my red hair so no one would know it was me. It was a very humbling experience. I was bruised all over but no broken bones.

You take care yourself, accept all the help you need - you are always so giving to others.

Sending you postive thoughts, vibes, prayers and big hugs to you.

Love you,

dec0r8or said...

LOL...I love when I get those anons in my inbox. What I want to know people actually CLICK those links? :-O

Rose - The Center of My Self said...

Sheri - Angels among us, indeed. I need to be humble enough to let them do their work, don't I?

Connie - Whoa! That sounds like it was probably pretty scary at the time! Glad you got medical help right away. A cousin of mine had a stroke at work, but no one realized. She now has permanent effects from it.

Sharon - Omigosh! I didn't realize that one of those got in here - yikes! Why do they do that? Delete!

Cindy said...

Although you and I are fb friends and I know your recent tribulations...
The blog has helped me SO much today. I've been feeling sorry for myself and I realized that I'm trying to do everything for myself and I'm not asking for help. Then the stupidity of not altering my schedule or commitments....and then the insanity of feeling guilty if there IS something that I'm not doing. This is the time to humble myself and live in reality. Thank you for this.