It’s now been five weeks since I broke my ankle. Five weeks of navigating the world on crutches. Some of the lessons I’ve learned during my temporary disability:
- Slow down. I can’t zoom around at my usual frenetic pace or I will fall flat on my face. I have to watch the ground for tripping hazards. I see a lot more when I move more slowly.
- Be patient. There are some things I can’t do well for myself and I have to wait for someone else to be willing and able to do them for me. Everything takes longer – bathing, dressing, fixing lunch. I have to not only be patient with myself and everyone else, I have to plan farther ahead and allow the time.
- Prioritize. I can’t do everything I used to do in a given amount of time, so I have to choose which are the most important and which I can let go.
- Ask for help. Oh, this is a hard one for me!
- Economy of motion. I can’t get up a million times and go back and forth from room to room in the middle of a task. Before I leave a room, I look around and see what I might need to take with me to the next room and pick it up before I even stand up.
- Be creative. I’ve especially had to be creative about moving things from place to place with no hands. Sometimes I carry them in my pockets or in a bag around my neck. I’ve placed various chairs in strategic spots, so I can bunny-hop a plate or a coffee cup from the kitchen counter to the stool to the kitchen table to a chair to the coffee table. (Makes me appreciate my tiny house!)