I am grateful for all the people in my life who care about how I’m doing as my foot heals from a metatarsal stress fracture, which I incurred on July 31, 2015. I’m grateful. I really am. But I’m having a more and more difficult time answering questions about my recovery (or lack thereof). What I say, on a good day: “It’s getting there . . .” What I say on most days: “I have no idea” usually accompanied by some kind of shrug. This isn’t what my friends and family want to hear. This isn’t what most people want to hear. It’s definitely not what I would want to hear. There aren’t words for how badly I wish I could answer otherwise.
Lately, I wonder if I’ll ever be able to run again.
It’s been 9 & a half weeks. I can’t remember what if felt like to be able to walk without a limp let alone do anything else. Running feels impossibly far away. I see photos of myself from the Big Sur marathon, and I wonder who that person is (or was) and where she went. Why did she have to leave? Who am I without her? I catch a glimpse at the “run” badge on my RoadID and feel like an impostor. I read updates from my friends who are gearing up for their fall marathons, and I resent them for being able to do something that I can’t, for reminding me of my limitations. Then I get mad at myself for my resentment–these are my friends, after all. And what kind of friend resents her friends for doing what they enjoy? I miss being outside. I miss racing. I miss sweating. I miss all of it.
I’ve been following my doctor’s orders. I’ve been conservative. I’ve stayed off my foot as much as I can and then some. I have given up my fall racing calendar. I have given up walking my dog. I have given up riding my bike. I have given up going to the store for myself. I don’t walk anymore; I drive or get rides pretty much everywhere. I’ve given up cutting the grass for myself. Doing any kind of yard work. Standing in class. Wearing actual shoes. I’ve been taking Vitamin D, Horsetail, Calcium & Magnesium, Symphytum Officinale, and the usual multivitamin, joint supplement, & Omega 3. It occurred to me yesterday that I could probably just skip food with breakfast and be fine with all these stupid pills. But they are supposed to help. All of these things are supposed to help.
And yet, here I am. It’s been 9 & a half weeks. WHY ISN’T IT BETTER? What else do I have to do? What other sacrifices can I possibly make? Of what else can I possibly let go? As if there’s some magic spell or curse that could be broken if only I knew the right fix. Would that it could be so.
I send this out into the world in part as an attempt to purge these feelings and send the negativity as far from me as possible. I also send it out in an attempt to be honest with myself and others. I am trying to be patient with myself and my limitations, but it’s hard.