Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Can't help falling....la,la,la,la...

Pity the puny of ankle and narrow of foot who, brainless but fashionable, purchase the knee high black suede boots with the wedge heel and zero ankle support, for lo, she has forgotten that two or three inches is a long way to fall if you happen to be a calcaneofiblular ligament attached to the ankle of a stork- like woman of sadly little grace.

No need to send thugs. I'll break my own kneecaps, thank you. I'll sprain and resprain the same poor old cancaneofib until it resembles, but is less resilient than the elastic you lost in your toilet tank three months ago. I will become so used to (as Marko says) "the annual wrecking" that as soon as my kneecaps are not grapefruit sized and the skin around my ankles has almost returned to the usual Caucasian fish-belly white tone, I declare myself well and strong and immediately spend days slogging up and down three flights of stairs carrying items heavy enough to tear my equally puny arms out my shoulder sockets. I move furniture. I haul bags of garbage, recycling, laundry and groceries. I dance spontaneously to Dead Can Dance (and I am not making that up.)

If this not stupid enough, I walk on uneven pavement.
You heard me.
I walk on uneven pavement.

Weedy has put in her customary keep-you-company appearance for my Doctor appointment. We sit there in the nine foot square room papered with anatomy of disease drawings like (thin gorgeous perfect red-headed) versions of Tweedle-Dee-Dee and Tweedle-Dee-Dum. This is the reward room. It means that after 45 minutes in the snot-infested, virus laden outer room, you may some hour actually see the doctor.

Dr. Margaret proceeds to poking and prodding the sore parts of my ankle very hard indeed and asking the rather redundant question, "Does that hurt?" as I yank my foot away, whimpering.
"It's a sprain," she says. And explains, "A partly torn ligament." She says the second part slowly, so that we, as laypersons, and I, as a person of drastically average IQ, can comprehend.
I explain that it was sprained but it got better and then worse.

"What did you do?" Oh god. This means remembering, which I'm not good at.

"I hauled heavy groceries and stuff up three flights of stairs." I don't tell her about the dancing or the decision, Monday, to walk up and down over a hundred stairs at work for fitness sake.

"Well, this is a common sprain if you go over on your ankle. It gets worse if you overwork or walk on uneven pavement." She explains the stuff I already know...ice, rest, physio, tape etc. while I consider moving to a city with more than two square feet of even pavement. Then, because I look unsuitably happy, she inquires, "Have you had your pap test this year?"

"No." Shit. Busted.

"Would you like to have it now?" Weedy's eyebrows shoot up to her hairline. She offers to leave for that part if I'm considering that.


Weedy, posing as the Cavalry, heads the conversation back to falls. She's fallen three times this past while, cleverly using her face as a buffer when she hit the ground. Margaret is her doctor too. The diversion is a partial success but I have to promise I will have a pap test. Soon. Damn. Is there no pity for the humiliation and suffering I've already accumulated for the month?

As we leave, I tell Dr. Margaret that really we are conducting do-it-yourself bone density tests where there is no waiting. If you keep falling and you don't break a hip, get pneumonia and die, then you aren't actually old yet and your bones have not yet turned to powder. I don't mention ligaments.

Weedy and me flee to MacDonald's to shorten our lives with transfats.

Stay tuned for "Running with Scissors."