Broken things

My left hand was in a cast last month. Two more broken bones to add to the ever growing list. My son had a bad dream and crawled into bed with for snuggles in the middle of the night. About an hour later he brought his knees towards his chin to curl up in his sleep and took my left pinky finger off the knuckle in an unfortunate mismatch of locations.

The snap was audible.

My doctor rightfully laughed when he declared me to be the only person he could imagine breaking bones while sleeping. I’ll admit, it was pretty funny. Painful, but funny. The folks in the imaging department showed me the pictures and reminded me they would, “leave the lights on for ya” on my way out. It’s probably not a good thing to be on a first name basis with your x-ray technician.

It turned out to be National Left Handed Day too when I broke my left hand and I even made a joke about not exactly doing it right… Fractures number 27 and 28 respectively for my lifetime count. That’s a lot of broken bones and months in a cast or in PT or recovering. So many days spent broken.

My pedometer broke too. Funky orange band on my left wrist counting steps and measuring exertion every day. Grading my progress like some electronic teacher checking the box as I slog along. I miss the bright pop of color on my wrist but I’m not missing the being measured.

It turns out, I’m well enough to navigate my days without the pedometer in that I can safely go and do to enough of a degree that I don’t have to keep track of the number of steps already “spent” before going and doing some more. If I do too much, I can now count on having just enough in the tank to make it home. That’s new. That’s a good thing. Exhaustion still hits but no longer leaves me, or my kids, stranded.

For now, I’m just glad to be rid of another cast. And I’m glad to be free of the daily reminder of how many more steps I need to be out from under this injury. Until it’s gone, it is unfathomable how much energy is spent every single day “recalculating route”. When every decision, every decision, is met with the need to calculate steps, there isn’t much left in the tank for anything else. How can you focus on anything when the mere choice of heading back to aisle two in the grocery store for an item you forgot leads you, instantly, back into “recalculating route” mode? I can’t even begin to say how freeing it is to have the noise of all of those calculations eliminated from my lived day. I can breathe again.

Maybe those cracks in my hand will be my last fractures. Maybe someday I will try on another pedometer and actually be strong enough to hit those magic 10,000 steps in a day. Maybe those things will happen. Maybe I’ll get lucky. Maybe next time the band will be blue. Or maybe, maybe I’ll just stop calculating for good.

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