As often as I have wished for more time in my life to prop my feet up and relax, now that I am faced with that being the only comfortable thing I can do, I find myself looking at my repose quite differently. And although I’d be lying like a rug if I said I missed doing things like household chores or laundry, I do yearn for the simple things that, BBA (before broken ankle) I had taken for granted. Shall we make a list?
1. Carrying one’s own beverages, in particular steaming hot morning coffee. I realize I touched on this briefly the other day but time hasn’t improved my technique and I am at the mercy of my family for my a.m. java fix. If they so chose, they could completely manipulate me, forcing me into letting them watch inappropriate and horrifying-even-to-me movies like “Team America: World Police” or worse “The Aristocrats.” They could coerce me into allowing them to eat candy 24/7. In HH’s case, he could use coffee delivery as leverage for sexual favors (which I admit wouldn’t be altogether bad). If I had testicles, my family would have me by them.
2. Taking a relaxing shower. Granted, I am fortunate that I am able to take my huge and heavy Frankenstein boot off in order to wash away the omnipresent desert dust and bloodhound slobber. I don’t have to deal with plastic bag application or one-leg-out baths. However, my right leg has neither the strength nor the stamina to support my too-much weight for any length of time, particularly with my right knee still bruised, swollen, and sidewalk-rashed. This leads me to barely take care of the essentials. No salt scrub and no lotion, even sometimes no conditioner. If I’m feeling like Sasquatch, I might force a quick poorly executed shave but that’s only because I do have some pride left. Yesterday, feeling peakish after such a shower, and not wanting to put the boot back on with damp feet (the x-ray technician jerk would truly be horrified by that, wouldn’t he?), I, trying to balance on my right leg whilst sitting down to get dressed, fell (again), further twisting my broken ankle, and hitting my horror flick knee with das boot. I yelled in pain but no one heard me so I guess it didn’t happen. I am a tree in the woods.
3. Standing up straight. My mother has been after me for years to do this and, after the same amount of years of ignoring her, I truly want to hold my shoulders back, push my pelvis slightly forward, and suck in my stomach. Instead, I, Quasimodo, am hunched over these implements of torture looking like a constipated cow. David has crowned me the Queen of Uncoordinated Crutch Usage and, as far as arguing with him goes, I haven’t a leg to stand on (well, maybe one but it doesn’t work very well).
4. Visiting my farm animals. This is by far the saddest aspect of ABA that there is. It’s not that I can’t make it across the farm yard because I can in an awkward, exhausting, and precarious manner. The honest and heart-wrenching truth is that, attached to these metal poles, everyone is frightened of me. I’m Lauren Crutchesarms and, unlike that Scissorhands guy, I can’t even prune the shrubbery (if those Monty Python knights would ever come back with one). Maybe the ruminants think I’m going to attract a lightning strike or perhaps they think my condition is contagious. I don’t know. What I do know is that I have to rely on camera photos and window glimpses to see my babies.
And this makes me a very sad panda.