Despondent. I admit that’s how I felt on Monday afternoon. I felt despondent.
I went to see my orthopedic doctor for a recheck of my broken foot. After looking at the new X-rays, he told me he saw “the beginnings of healing,” but I would have to stay on the crutches for at least three more weeks.
After the three weeks, he will check it again. If it’s still moving in a positive direction, if it’s no longer hurting when I put weight on it, and if the tenderness is gone, I’ll be able to just wear the orthopedic boot and walk on that, with no crutches.
If it doesn’t heal in three months, then he will do surgery on it.
He reminded me that a Jones fracture takes a long time to heal because it’s located in a part of the foot that doesn’t have a good blood supply, and tendons run over the fractured area.
And he cautioned me to stay on the crutches and not put weight on my foot except in the shower, where I could put weight on the heel.
OK, not horrible news. The bone is healing. I don’t need surgery now. I don’t have to do anything different at this point except be more vigilant about staying on the crutches.
So why the despondency? The doctor’s visit didn’t meet my expectations, and I came face to face with my nemesis, uncertainty.
I expected to be told Monday that the bone was almost healed. I had no proof that it was, but it didn’t hurt nearly as much as it did before, and I reasoned that it must be well on the way to complete union.
What I got was a reminder that this is going to be a long process. I’m going to have to be patient with it.
And I also expected to be told Monday whether or not I would need surgery. This was a misunderstanding on my part. Even the doctor is uncertain about the need for surgery.
But it still bothered me that I won’t know for a number of weeks whether or not, after all the travels on crutches and all the hours in the boot, I still might need surgery.
If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know I don’t naturally do well with uncertainty.
Uncertainty feeds my OCD and generalized anxiety. Uncertainty leaves me open to unlimited anxiety about what the future brings.
So I felt despondent. But I soon pulled myself together. Larry reminded me that the foot is healing. And I remembered that times like this are good practice for living with uncertainty.
I’ve decided to make friends with The Monster Boot. It’s a support system. It allows me to move around even with a tender, broken bone.
As for the crutches, I have a new attitude there, too. Larry told our cats that my crutches were “Mama’s extra paws.” I like that: extra paws.
The Monster Boot and I will be getting around on the extra paws.
Do your expectations about the way things should be ever result in disappointment? How do you handle the disappointment?