So, my friend - you've sprained your ankle. Did you do something daft, like go downstairs in the dark when it would have been so easy to put the light on? Are you feeling quite silly about that, as well as rather guilty about the trouble you've caused to your friends and family? Not to mention the fairly continual discomfort bordering on twinges of pain at times, and the frustration of being immobile for longer than you'd hoped and expected?
You're looking at this the wrong way, my friend! Dose up on those painkillers, get that foot raised, keep digging out the ice packs, and benefit from the enforced rest! Don't focus on all the things you can't do; instead, seize the opportunity to enjoy all the things you can! Such as:
- Admire the multi-coloured bruising. Marvel at the different tones of purple one small area can produce. Note that the bruise starts just below your toes and doesn't finish till above your ankle. Appreciate the straight, distinct line along the top of your foot, marking the transition from pale, unblemished skin to colourful, bruised flesh. If you have a mirror handy, you may even be able to spot some interesting discolouration to the sole of your foot, too. Hours of entertainment are yours!
- Throw yourself whole-heartedly into the physiotherapy you've been given. How often is it that an exercise regime consists of pointing your foot up then down, wriggling your toes, and then circling your ankle round a bit? Now that's your kind of exercise!
- Do some online shopping. Justify it by making sure that at least some of the items you buy are Christmas presents. Feel good about getting ahead with your Christmas shopping. Then, as the packages start arriving, realise that you need to keep getting up to answer the door. At this point it may dawn on you that you didn't really think that through.
- Watch some of the TV you've been taping* and never quite managed to catch up with. When exactly was Sherlock on?! Or just decide to watch your DVD of The Princess Bride for the umpteenth time. As you wish... * I can't get used to calling it 'V+ing'!
- Discover daytime TV. Quickly undiscover it again.
- Exercise your ingenuity. It's not exactly easy to carry cups of tea while you're on crutches. Other items can be tricky, too. Have some fun thinking up ways to meet these challenges. (Handy hint: Rucksacks are good for things like books. Not so good for cups of tea...)
- Encourage The Children to become more independent. This is an excellent opportunity for them to learn useful skills such as making their own packed lunches, washing up and putting away the dinner things, cooking, doing the Asda shop, cleaning the house, earning a decent wage, driving the car, waiting on their mother hand and foot....
- Send some long overdue emails. Remind a few friends that you are actually still around, you are OK, and let them know what you've been doing lately during the time you were so busy that you seemed to have disappeared from the face of the earth.
- Make a start on reading some of the books on your towering 'to read' pile. It might be good to move some of them to the 'keep' or 'give away' piles before the 'to read' pile obscures all of the bedroom windows.
- Look forward to your silly ankle being better. Daydream about all the things you'll be able to do: running marathons, abseiling, mountain climbing, trekking through the rainforest, carrying a cup of tea without spilling it...
PS Update: Thanks again for all your kind wishes! I'm seeing an improvement every day - I can (just about) get around without crutches now, the swelling has gone down a lot (I even managed to get a sock on yesterday, for the first time since it happened! I was pathetically excited lol!), the bruising is less tender, and generally it just feels so much better :) I have a follow-up appointment at the hospital tomorrow, after which I'll know more. I think mainly I need to build strength back up, it feels very weak!