So it turns out there is a plantar plate tear in my left foot too but at least it’s not as severe yet as with the right foot and hopefully it will not go there. So things are still ongoing, uncertain and it definitely feels challenging.
I had been noticing some occasional pain in my left foot for some time now and finally had an MRI to confirm suspicions of a tear. Physiotherapy has been put to pause while the left foot recovers for a month or so. It’s going to be an even longer spring but it’s ok. This time I know what to expect, most likely, and that seems to make an important difference.
I mean I already knew that this spring would be very slow with the recovery of the originally injured right foot, so having the left one thrown in doesn’t make that much difference unless it would get much worse. I’d rather know now that there is an injury on the left foot than be fully recovered and back to normal life, and then find out that life would slow down again.
What worries me most now is that there are more pains now with the right foot too, probably due to me trying to be back at the office and consequently walking about 3 times more steps per day than when I was working remotely. I hope the right foot is just irritated and not torn again, which would lead me back to square one. Fear of going backwards is gnawing at me badly and I hate feeling like this again. So now I’m trying to take it easy and coach myself through this.
Let’s do some self-coaching!
Injured me: I hate being again in pain and not knowing if I’m making progress or going back to pain and being helpless. It’s taken forever! Hate it, hate it, hate it. 😡 I just want to be healthy and back to my normal life again!
Coach me: Ok, it sounds like you have been through a lot ! How did you manage to get through the pain and being helpless to the progress you mentioned?
Injured me: Well, I guess I just very slowly accepted the situation and as the pain got less bad I was able to do something else than just being in pain and crying.
Coach me: That’s really good that you were able to accept the situation even if slowly. What kind of things did you do after the pain eased up enough?
Injured me: Well, once I stopped eating the stronger pain meds, I was able to read, watch more tv and be on my laptop more. I started a blog to have something meaningful to do before eventually being able to start remote working. But now I’m afraid I’m slipping back to just being in pain and useless!
Coach me: Wow, sounds like you were able to do a lot to keep your spirits up! It also sounds like being able to do something meaningful is really important to you.
Injured me: Yes, but now I’m afraid I won’t be able to do those anymore, and all the small joys will be gone from the everyday life while recovering. It just sucks to be in pain and not know what’s going to happen.
Coach me: Ok, so does it just suck all the time or can you think of moments recently when it didn’t suck that much or when it actually felt nice.
Injured me: It mostly sucks. But I enjoyed having time to read for once and make progress in the Reading Challenge. And it was really nice to see friends and be back at the office even for just a week. It felt really good to be better company to my husband, when I haven’t been in that much pain, and go out for a dinner and movie with him. And it was great to be able to drive again and go grocery shopping to feel some of that normal independence. But now I can’t do those again because I need to limit how much I walk during the day. At least I can still work at home or I’d go nuts.
Coach me: Ok! Sounds like you have had many moments when you felt good and perhaps distracted from the pain and worry. Next let’s imagine for a moment that you wake up tomorrow and everything is healed or at least much better with your injuries. How do you think this would show to yourself and to your husband at home?
Injured me: Haha, I’d be jumping and dancing, I guess? I’d be able to tiptoe to kiss him. We would go for a walk or a run together and I’d go to fitness classes at the gym again! I’d get back to being strong and independent! I would be free to enjoy everything in my life again and be happy and bring happiness to others too.
Coach me: That sounds great that you would do sports together again and be happy to experience your life fully and bring that happiness around you. While you are not quite there yet, with the injury still ongoing, what do you think you are already doing to get to the point of dancing, running and being happy and healed?
Injured me: “I can’t do much about how fast my body repairs the ligaments. I guess all I can do is to give it time and take it easy one day at the time. Monitor the feet and either carefully increase walking when they feel better or just stay home and rest, and do what nice things I can to keep my spirits high. It does relieve some pressure to know that I can go back to working remotely, so I won’t go crazy at home.
Coach me: That sounds like a good way to go until there will be more recovery with your feet. You’re clearly on the right track to making things better! Do you think you could, in addition to those things, concentrate also on taking your mind away from the negative thoughts of fear and frustration when they rise?
Injured me: It’s not easy. I guess I could try to focus on the already positives rather than negatives. I know that I’m getting better, with or without setbacks, but it’s so difficult to not experience those negative feelings and being overwhelmed by those when I’m tired, scared and in pain and everything feels like it’s taking forever.
Coach me: That is totally understandable and it’s ok to feel what you are feeling in those moments. The important thing is to be able to get past those feelings once you acknowledge them, and replace them with more optimistic thoughts and actions that bring you more hope than more sorrow. Remind yourself of the progress what you have made over the course of the recovery and whenever possible do those things that give you good feelings, that you have already been doing.
Injured me: You make a good point! 🙂 I will keep this in mind and try to focus on the good stuff. I can’t control that much how my body heals, but I can have more control in how I respond in different situations. I know it won’t always work but I will try nevertheless.
And then just repeat that discussion again and again until either Injured Me or Coach Me gives up. 😀