Swerving to avoid the deer…

It’s been 23 days since breaking my foot. It feels like a lifetime. Doing anything, everything, takes more time and energy. I’m beyond frustrated. 
After falling and catching myself with my broken foot for the third weekend in a row, I couldn’t sleep last night. I read “The Girl on the Train” in its entirety before finally drifting off to sleep around 2 am. *Sidenote: it was amazing* I knew I had my 3 week follow up with my orthopedic doc, which would include X-rays, which could indicate that I would need surgery to fix the break. Knowing the amount of pain I was in after yesterday’s fall had me so worried that I’d hear the words “you need surgery”, I was a nervous wreck. 
I arrived at the office a few minutes early. Long enough to enjoy the view over Lake Michigan, at least. 

View from the lobby of Northwestern Medicine’s Centr for Comprehensive Orthopaedic and Spine Care

After X-rays (which thankfully I questioned the tech when she said she needed a weight bearing view, because ow), my doctor came in and harassed me about my blue scooter, my hipster backpack, and why I need two iPhones. He’s really the best, because anyone who can harass me while pointing at X-rays of my broken foot will immediately make me feel at ease.  I’m serious, he’s awesome. 

He poked and prodded my foot, asked about my calf pain, which last week had me convinced I had a DVT, and asked about my pain levels. When I told him today I was in a lot of pain after involuntarily catching myself from falling with it, I got the evil eyes. After using a metaphor about swerving to avoid hitting a deer is more dangerous than staying straight on the road, he told me to just used to falling, anything to avoid putting weight on that foot. 
Then we looked at my X-rays. I had not seen my x-rays from the ER, so we did a then and now comparison. It honestly didn’t matter which one we looked at, my face was frozen in a contorted look of horror. I knew how much pain I’ve been in, and how swollen my foot still is, and how much bruising still exists, but seeing what should be a smooth bone with two shards and a gaping hole horrified me. 

After asking me to please stop making that face, he pointed out that although the new ones looked worse, there were signs of growth, which is what I need. He then broke it to me that I will not be out of the boot cast before Memorial Day, and that we won’t know for sure that I don’t need surgery until there is significantly more bone healing. Oh, and also, I need to start sleeping in the boot cast. Which I take to mean stop sleeping, because who can sleep in a boot?
So there’s that. But he did violently agree with me starting back with my trainer, as long I don’t put any pressure or weight on my left foot, agreeing it will make me feel less useless and frustrated. So, Thursday night I go back to see Lauren at Equinox and I could not be more excited! Tank top arms, here I come! 

3 thoughts on “Swerving to avoid the deer…

  1. VikingWhoLovesHiking


    I stumbled across your blog after fracturing my fifth metatarsal on March 30th. I am so sorry that you are experiencing this as well! Tomorrow will be four weeks since I missed the step going out my front door, rolled my ankle and broke my foot. Four weeks feels like an eternity. I have three active kids at home and we are a family on the move. This fracture has completely sidelined me from all of my normal activities. As you noted, everything takes longer and it is exhausting. Thankfully I’ve been able to work from home, so I take my conference calls from the couch with my foot elevated all day. That has helped to pass the time and keep me sane.

    I have been in a boot, but completely non weight bearing, from day 1. The first two weeks were horrible. Not only did my broken foot hurt, but the rest of my body was in pain as a result of operating on one leg and having to compensate. I have noticed a decrease in pain over the last couple of weeks, but my foot is still sore and at times I will still feel a sharp pain at the fracture site. Not only is my foot sore at the fracture site, but all over. Heel, ball, toes. Everywhere. I also can’t seem to shake the swelling. The swelling isn’t as bad as week 1, but it’s been pretty consistent through from weeks 2-4. The bruising is almost gone on my foot, but oddly, my toes still are a bit bruised.

    I can take my boot off to shower and to ice it, but other than that, I wear it all the time. I hate it. Sleeping with it on is uncomfortable and even painful at times. I find that I wake up every 2-3 hours because I’m getting sore from lying in the same position. Once awake it’s very difficult to get comfortable again and to fall back to sleep.

    My last appointment with the orthopedist was at week 2. At that point, the fracture looked like it was still stable. I go back on May 2 for a new x-ray and I’m praying that it remains stable and even that some new bone growth appears. I was told at my last appointment that I could end up being non weight bearing for 6-8 weeks, depending on how things go. I always hate to wish my time away, but this is one situation where I really just want to fast forward and put this behind me.

    In the meantime, I am focusing on clean eating, rest, and I plan to begin exercising my upper body this week. Last week my regular doctor told me I could start leg lifts with the boot once I don’t have pain. I’m not quite there yet. My husband, kids and I love to hike and have a two week trip planned to Alaska in July. I’m trying to follow doctor’s orders perfectly so that I can do most of the hiking we had planned.

    Hang in there! I hope you start feeling some relief from the pain soon. I will keep following your progress.



  2. Megan b

    I’ve been sleeping in a boot since December due to planters fasciitis. I felt better a long time ago but I’ve convinced myself that the boot is a huge reason why I continue to feel good. It was horrible the first few days but after a week I was used to it. And now I don’t even notice it at all.
    Sorry to hear you aren’t healing faster!

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