My Friend Tom Won’t Stand Next to Me in an Electrical Storm…

September 11, 2019
I was sitting in the TV room when I noticed my injured foot (towel wrapped around it to ice it), and thought, we’ll at least I’m going to sketch something today!” (Sakura Pigma Professional Brush Pen FB with watercolor in the Hahnemühle Travel Book—this is drawing paper, not watercolor paper, but I love painting on it!)

It’s official, after Sunday’s event my friend Tom said “You have the most awful luck! Remind me not to stand next to you when lightning is threatening!”

I don’t blame him. I wouldn’t stand next to me in that situation either. And recommend that you don’t as well.

Sunday Dick and I went house hunting. At house two my stocking feet slipped on the carpeted steps to the basement. I landed 2 steps up from the bottom step, unable to stand without Dick’s help. 

We made it to a couch and the realtor who was showing the house brought me a 10 lb. bag of frozen strawberries (!) to wrap around my right ankle. (This is not the ankle I tore up and the foot I fractured in 2017. This is the right ankle—I tore it up in the 1980s, slipping on an icy step, if you remember my mail art from that time!)

After about 15 minutes the heavy wave of pain was dulling down. Dick returned from checking out the rest of the house at my suggestion (I didn’t want the fall to be for nothing!). I told him if I didn’t put my boot on now I’d never get it on. The realtor was happy to get me booted and out of the house, away from all the prospective buyers.

Dick and I had driven separately to the house, we’d gone out on a whim because of the photos on Zillow.

While I couldn’t take a step without help I felt convinced that my boot was stiff enough and heavy enough that I could drive. We were only 15 minutes from home and the route was a low-traffic parkway. We agreed I’d try to drive one block and pull over if necessary, with Dick following.

Funny thing is adrenaline can help you do pretty much anything. Humming loudly, and gulping now and then, I drove home successfully. I washed the tears off my face, peed, and got back in the car with the help of Dick and Phyllis’ old cane (which was still in the back hall at our place). Dick drove me to my orthopedic surgeon’s practice because they have Urgent Care.

It was a slow day at the Orthopedic Urgent Care. A tech wheeled me off for X-rays, a physician’s assistant assessed my mobility and read the X-Rays , and an assistant’s assistant fitted me with a new air-cast.

Imagine the boots worn by the storm troupers in “Star Wars,” that’s what the boot looks like. And it has “pump action.” Once your foot is velcroed and latched into place you pump it up to provide a custom fit to contain your injured parts.

The great thing about these boots is that you can actually walk right away, and without a ton of pain.

Today, I’m walking around on it with very little discomfort. (I take it off to ice it, and I try to always put it back on for walking about the house, because yesterday when I didn’t the pain got pretty intense again.) Of course my foot has lovely shades of blues and purples.

I’ll see the doctor in 10 days. The P.A. didn’t see any breaks. Based on the levels and locations of my pain she thought I’d torn my ligaments.

My first thought was of course that I would now miss the rest of the cycling season. I’d finally started to make a come back after the time off with the cataract surgeries.  

We won’t go into what my second through fifth thoughts were.

Of course I grumbled when we got home, “I’m going to die in this house.” To which Dick responded, “No we are moving Cutie Pie.”

We wanted a one story house mainly because I don’t want to deal with stairs any more (duh!). But we’ve been looking in an area were the architecture tends towards multi-levels because I really wanted to live near my biking route. I think I’m going to have to compromise.

I think we all know how this is going to end.

Dick is going to have to bake chocolate chip cookies on his own this evening!

    • Paul
    • September 11, 2019

    Seriously, not again! I had one of those air casts but still needed crutches for two weeks before I could weight bear. You should NOT be allowed near stairs or curbs anymore🤨.

    1. Reply

      Paul, at this point I just want to lie down and sleep until January 1. This has been a frustrating year. I’m most sad knowing that I’ll have to house hunt (eventually) in a totally different area from where I want to live.

    2. Reply

      I think I’m going to have to become a shut in!

  1. Reply

    I’m so sorry Roz. Talk about frustrating. Wishing you much luck with future house hunting. I’m assuming that house was not the one…

    1. Reply

      Thanks Maery, that house is not the one…

    2. Reply

      Can’t see if I answered this yet or not since I’m in the dashboard, not at the post. So thanks for the kind thoughts.

  2. Reply

    Looks like someone needs a warm cup of “pun-kin sa-umm” spice and a bowl of soup with their favorite paper rep! Enjoy the cookies!

    1. Reply

      Ack I hate pumpkin spice anything! But I made a huge batch of Curried Cauliflower soup the day before the fall and have enjoyed that for lunch several days. And the cookies have been great. Since I can’t draw for the length of time I used to draw before the cataract surgeries and I’m not pretty much immobile you can image that I’m getting up to no good and Dick is really being tested for sainthood! (Loving the Hahnemühle Mixed Media paper by the way.)

    • Corinne McNamara
    • September 11, 2019

    So sorry to hear about your foot! I wish you a speedy recovery and that you find the house perfect for you.

    1. Reply

      Thanks Corinne.

    • Eleanor
    • September 11, 2019

    So Sorry to hear about your ordeal. Sounds like you are put in forced slow down mode. May you find your new home with ease. May you heal well.

    1. Reply

      Thanks for the good wishes.

    • Kate Burroughs
    • September 11, 2019

    I’m so sorry to hear about your troubles. As we age, a single story house with no stairs is a very good option. Sorry you can’t find one in the area you want. Have the realtors told you none exist in the area you want? Sometimes there are exceptions although there may be none on the market now.

    1. Reply

      A drive through the neighborhood tells me that there are few one-story houses in this area. And none coming up for sale. But Dick will be looking on his own now and he’ll get a realtor to help him. We will probably have to broaden our search. It’s also a shame that the area we want to be is on the border of the new soccer stadium area and people are fleeing the congestion and parking issues that has caused. Having lived so long in an area where there are similar congestion issues we definitely don’t want to move into that portion of the area, so our search was limited more. We definitely don’t want that type of living situation as we age. We hope to move to a place that can serve our needs until we need care, which we hope is still decades off.

    • Kathleen Michael
    • September 11, 2019

    😱 😱 Glad you didn’t break anything! really like the sketch!

    1. Reply

      Thanks Kathleen.

    • Joanne Kalvaitis
    • September 11, 2019

    Been there, done that. It ain’t fun. I wish you speedy healing.
    That aside I’m a newcomer to your blog and want to tell you I felt like Aladdin walking into the cave full of treasure when your blog arrived this morning!
    Thank you Roz for sharing so much. I hope it’s a long while before it becomes burden to you.

    1. Reply

      Thanks for the good wishes. Glad you enjoy the blog.

    • Pat Cameron
    • September 11, 2019

    I did my ankle in what sounds the same way this time last year. I literally feel your pain!
    In emergency I was told to go home, put a bandage on it and take a Panadol. Wish I’d insisted on more follow up though.
    A young Chinese foot massager later told me “Chinese doctor say 100 days” ( till better)
    Take it easy!

    1. Reply

      Because I ran for so many years and now cycle, when I get injured like this the first goal is to get healed well even if it means more time off, hence we always go to urgent care. I’m already chomping at the bit after only one week off from cycling, but if it means I can come back strong I’ll do whatever the Orthopedic tells me when I see him next week. (The last fall, when I fractured the right foot I had 2 months off before I could do any LIGHT indoor cycling and it took a while to build back up.) I’ve already come to grips with the reality that I’m probably out for the rest of the cycling season here in MN. But I’d rather sit it out and come back gradually (when suggested by the ortho.) than create a long term situation.

      I’ve had good days and bad, some days the air cast feels great, some days it just aches, but I know it’s getting the rest it needs.

      I’m sorry you got such bad advice at emergency. (I don’t know what Panadol is.) I hope you’ve made a full recovery.

      • William
      • September 14, 2019

      Hi Roz. Sharing the incapacitation of foot malfunction, I am greatful for our single level home. I guess, in a small Texas panhandle town, we have the advantage of most homes being single level. Some of our friends who had multi storied homes have had to move when the stairs became an obstacle. Have you considered an elevator add on in your current home? I know they aren’t cheap, but neither is moving. I saw an ad online that showed new approaches to personal elevators. Just a thought. Hope wellness is quick to arrive.

      1. Reply

        William the move to a single story dwelling is something I’ve wanted for 40 years. We were finally going to do that but the area I want to live in is mostly two story dwellings.

        It was bad luck of the worst kind that they made us take off our shoes and my stocking feet slipped on the carpeted stairs of a multi-story house we checked out—because until Sunday I could go up and down stairs and we thought it might suit our needs. (I was cycling 17.5 miles a day up until then after all.)

        I’ll heal.

        I hope I’m 25 years out from a stair chair or elevator! But maybe not any more, we’ll have to wait and see.

        Either way I want the convenience of one-story living. Maybe I should just move to Texas!

        Right now I just want to be able to get back on my BICYCLE and RIDE because this inactivity without being able to draw is driving me crazy!!!!!

        Thanks for the kind wishes for wellness!

    • Tina Koyama
    • September 11, 2019

    Oh, this certainly hasn’t been your year, is it! 🙁 So sorry to hear of your mishap. I’ll bring you a bag of frozen strawberries!

    1. Reply

      Thanks Tina, I’m feeling a little jinxed.

    • SusanJ
    • September 13, 2019

    Just wanted to say you shouldn’t rule out the possibility of installing a stair chair before learning about them. The new ones can be installed in a few hours and their entire infrastructure is removable (and reusable) with essentially no damage. Quality ones aren’t cheap, perhaps $4000 for the installation by experts, the equipment, warranty, training, etc. but IMHO worth every penny. BTW, they don’t block the stairs for walking up and down. Also, the chair can be temporarily removed from the runner if necessary for moving large items up or down the stairs.

    My husband and I have lived in the same 2-story house for many years and don’t want to move yet. (Really just 2 stories, no attic or basement.) My arthritis had gotten to the point where it was hard for me to go up and especially down the stairs safely. We recently got a stair chair and I LOVE it.

    Best wishes.

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