When I was a kid, I used to cry at the mention of something painful. Needless to say, I got called a wimp a lot. This combined with a need for control, led me to becoming generally stoic as an adult. I get hurt now, badly sometimes, and I walk it off, act like it’s nothing. I’m guilty of doing the same thing when I’m sick, especially at work. I won’t quit even when I should.
Last Friday, walking innocently down some steps while camping, I rolled my ankle. This isn’t anything new. I’m constantly spraining my left ankle. But it betrayed me on a day when I needed it, when I refused to believe there was anything wrong with it. After all, I could put a little weight on it. So I went through the weekend, traipsing about the woods like I’m not in pain or that my ankle isn’t starting to swell up to golf ball proportions. Monday came around, and sure enough, the swelling was worse and it was bruised on both sides of the ankle and it hurt. I gave up and went to the doctor.
Turns out, it’s only another sprain. All the same, I’m still stuck in a walking boot for a week, and then a brace while I work to regain my strength in that ankle. And I don’t want to. I want to shuck off this stupid heavy boot and just walk and jump and do whatever I want. But I can’t. Like physically, I can’t. And I hate it.
Over the last week, I’ve also been wrapped up in completing as much of my revisions as I can. I want to be done. I want to have this novel all sorted and ready for critiquing by the end of March. But along with my ankle, a part of revising tripped me up. I’m having to wait and recalculate. I want to fly through revisions, but I can’t. Not unless I want to mess up what I already have, much like I can’t run right now unless I want to cause more damage to my ankle.
It’s hard to accept, but life, for whatever reason, seems to be screaming at me to slow down. For someone who constantly worries she is wasting her life away doing the wrong things, slowing down seems tantamount to stopping. It’s not something I’m good at. But it’s something I need, for my ankle and my writing. I know in the end, I’ll have a stronger story, and, hopefully, a strong ankle.