I am usually on the Internet seconds after something has happened to me or a family member or friend or someone on the news, checking out the good the bad and the ugly. Tell me you have an Anal Fissure and I'm looking that sucker up. Sebaceous Cyst? I'm all over the videos of that. But for some very smart reason, I didn’t look up anything having to do with Broken Ankle.
First, it was because I was drugged to the eyeteeth and couldn’t even operate the Internet. But then it was because I didn’t want to know. I needed to focus on the immediate future – how I was going to get from the bed to the bathroom and back. That was such a process and was so dang exhausting that I couldn’t fill my mind with anything else especially pictures of what Broken Ankle might look like under the splint. Then, after few days, when the depression set in, I couldn’t look up gross broken ankles because I was never getting out of this tiny world I was now living in. A world where grumpy Husband, now known to all as Nurse Shrek, had to do every little thing for me. Asking for help is hard. You can imagine if I were having a hard time asking Nurse Shrek for help, asking friends would be even worse. And I had months of this helpless drama ahead of me. So I just didn’t look.
Which would be why, when the splint came off four weeks ago, I was more than a bit traumatized at the mess that was my right leg. If that sucker hadn’t been attached to me, I would have denied it was mine. In what world could my pretty right leg be this hairy fuzzy yellow muscle-less bloody mess?
At first, I couldn’t even feel much except the lack of weight from the splint. But when the stiches came out, I felt those, every tiny snip. And when the cast dude bent my foot into place, I felt that. Nurse Shrek was in the corner trying to ignore the whole removal process, turning green every time I squealed. Why Husband went into nursing, we’ll never know. Oh yeah, that’s right. Because he was forced to when the dumbasses slammed into me and snapped three bones. Poor guy. Nursing is totally not his calling.
Anyway, three weeks of splint, four weeks of cast and I got complacent about what the leg looked like. I babied Broken Ankle and its massive cast. I made sure not to bump it or tap it or jostle it in any way. And every time I thought about what it might look like, I pushed that image to the back of my mind because I could do nothing about it…
Then yesterday, I went in to the doc’s office to get the cast removed and the big tall dude with a sense of humor drier than my skin came at it with a saw. And every time I flinched, he laughed and said, “It won’t get you. I promise.” But his definition of ‘get’ was different than mine. His definition of “It won’t get you.” was “I won’t cut a bloody trail in your leg” and my definition was “don’t put pressure on my skin in any way at all because I will scream little high pitched screams and make faces and die.” And believe you me, his saw pushed on the cast and the cast pushed on my skin and the skin hurt and flinched and BOY did I not enjoy it.
Finally the stupid green cast was off and my hairy stinky mutilated leg was free. And it was good.
For about two minutes, and then the reality set in. My leg was even worse, even more dead than the last time I saw it four weeks ago. And yes, I mean ‘more dead.’ Sure, I expected hairy and stinky. Of course it would be hairy and stinky. It’s not been bathed for seven weeks. But purple and mutilated? Yeah, I hadn’t counted on that. I don’t know what I was thinking.
Yeah I do, I was focusing on getting the cast off not on what happens next. I knew putting weight on it was going to be a challenge but I didn’t think about the scars and the pain and the pain and the scars.
And then the lovely lady who fit me for my boot told me to take each step like I was stepping on a jelly donut and to not step to hard and squish out the jelly. Worst. Imagery. EVER to give someone who already thinks that a step is going to cause the bones to break and stick out the sides of Broken Ankle. I mean I was already worried that my little hops from the couch to the crutches might break Left Ankle and now I’m imagining stepping on Broken Ankle and jelly squirting out the sides of the incisions. Horrifying.
But what's worse than my possible jelly donut squirting ankle? That would be the layers and layers skin that came off Broken Ankle once it was free.
Did you know that your body gets rid of 30,000 to 40,000 old skin cells every day? Every freaking day! And that the top 18 to 23 layers of your skin, well those are made of dead cells. I'm not one for math but thousands of skin cells shedding layers of dead skin cells each day is gross. Seven weeks of a million plus skin cells gathering in a dry warm cast and dying off but not having anywhere to go until that stupid green cast came off and I rubbed my hand gently over the leg and it came off in sheets. SHEETS. OF. SKIN. PEOPLE. Well, that's the grossest thing ever!
There was so much skin that when I took a bath yesterday to try and warm (trick) my ankle into bending more than half an inch, I shed enough skin from that one leg that I could have made a whole person!!!
I know I tend exaggerate but I’m not kidding here. I could have made whole freaking person out of the millions of dead skin cells sloughing off my foot alone. Sitting and stewing in a bath of hot floating skin is the grossest thing ever. Grosser than that picture of my fibroid tumor filled womb. Grosser than having to pull the sandal strap from my shoe out of Joe Boxer’s ass. Grosser than the mess that is my scabby scars and mutilated bruises and misshapen calf. SO DANG GROSS!
And that’s been my last two days – pain and skin. And more skin. And just when I think I've got it all, even more skin. I don’t have pictures of the bath skin person – you’re welcome - but if you’d like to see some gross hairy leg, purple mutilated Broken Ankle pictures, they are below. I'm off to attempt to 'flex' my ankle and pretend this isn't happening to me.