April 17, 2011

A Good Run

Posted in Life's Little Moments tagged , , , , , , at 10:18 am by autismmommytherapist

It’s 1:30 in the morning, my leg is throbbing, and I know I’ll never get back to sleep. Crap.

Generally, this is a wee bit early in the day for me to come to terms with what will now be a huge and necessary change in my life, but since I’m up, I may as well get the mourning over with, and put this time to use. You see, I’ve been a runner for twenty-odd years (okay, only nine miles a week, it still counts), but that ache below my knee, that recurring twinge that has periodically resurfaced over the last six months, is telling me my days of pounding pavement are kaput. There’s no mystery here as to the source of the pain, as I’ve already been to a good orthopedist, one I’m certain was in grade school while I was living in a dorm. He informed me during the appointment that I have severe tendonitis in one rogue and ungrateful leg, and then proceeded to lay out my choices for rectifying the situation. None of them made mommy happy.

My youngish specialist told me I’m lucky this is my first running injury in two decades, a fact of which I’m already well aware. He then informed me curtly that my options were as follows:  come to him for therapy, which will only alleviate the symptoms for a time (which, given my lack of the latter, is not really an option); run through the pain, ice it down, and use the fancy and expensive cream he’ll prescribe for me, which is the idiotic solution I’ve since chosen; or, quit running and take up another form of cardio (blech!). Since waking up before Leno’s over every evening that I’ve put those Nikes to work earlier in the day is not really a mature solution, I know my Chariots of Fire days are done. At least, in all honesty (commence groaning now), I can report that me and my legs have had a good run.

And as an added bonus, I know what I’ll write about this morning.

I know this is not an horrific situation, as I have been up for good at 1:30 AM for far more grave matters. In the past, I have spent the wee hours of the morn contemplating the accuracy of Justin’s pediatricians stating his behaviors were simply reminiscent of his father’s own early development, and that he would be fine (sorry guys, play again). The twilight hours have also found me conscious during those dark days when I watched my youngest start to slip away, and I literally wondered if I’d ever hear one of my children say my name again. Clearly, those were far more desperate times to be awake, knowing my intolerance for fatigue would only make the next twenty hours even more difficult than they would be had slumber enveloped me. I am aware that in this particular instance I have (crappy) choices, can choose to walk rather than run, will still be able to exercise, and when I’ve rested my leg, will sleep once again. I know that I’m fortunate to be able to “fix this”, as there are a number of other issues within our family I have not a prayer at altering. I can tell myself with all honesty, that this one will be okay.

Yet, I’m still pissed. And on this occasion, I’m indulging in this emotion.

In the past I’ve spent a great deal of time playing “it’s all relative”, primarily so I could get through the day. I’ve partaken in such rationalizations as “well, a man (while talking on his cell phone) drove into my face today and totaled my car with my four-year-old in it, but at least we’re still alive.”  I’ve selected the bright side with my youngest too, as in “yes, the autism diet seems to be working, he’s only had diarrhea six times today instead of twelve.”  I know I’ve sounded ridiculous on occasion, but that is my way of processing pain and grief, and so far it has worked for me. At times I’ve had to trot out “okay, this does totally suck, but at least nobody died”, as even the detectives on CSI could not have discovered the bright spot shining through, but fortunately I haven’t had to implement that one too often.

It sounds pathetic even to me.

But tonight (or this morning, depending on how you look at things), I’m not going to search for the silver lining. Things, while not perfect chez McCafferty, have been looking up for quite a while now, and I no longer feel I’m clawing my way to the top for a fingerhold on happy. I don’t feel inclined to bribe myself through the darkness, am content to ride it out, as I know I will discover light on the other side. This evening (or morning) I’m going to let myself be irritated that I’m losing something I love, without feeling compelled to bring in the habitual gratitude chaser I’ve felt in the past was necessary to stave off something even worse. Here, cocooned in the darkness of the gentle strands of the afghan my granny crocheted me, the one that still makes me feel cosseted by love, I’m going to gift myself the indulgence of simply being mad over something not even close to tragic.

This morning, I just get to kvetch.



  1. Shivon said,

    Kvetch away darling…lots of love

  2. mkyannon said,

    Kim, I’m so sorry to hear that. I do understand as I have been wearing an aircast for the past week, and I cannot exercise at all. MY saving grace is this wonderful diet that is keeping me from gaining pounds while I rest my ankle to hopefully heal itself. It is such a tragedy that the one exercise that works so well to keep us in shape can be so damaging. Yet pounding the pavement releases a sense of freedom from breaking out of any brick and mortar, or emotion that may envelope us. Hope to see you soon!

  3. Kathy M said,

    How did I have no idea that you were a runner? Seriously?

  4. Mom said,

    I know how disappointing it is for you to stop running. Sorry honey! Suggestion–maybe change the music you listen to as you are walking–tone it down a bit and keep to the new rhythm. Love ya.

  5. mamafog said,

    So sorry to hear. Wishing you the best.

  6. Robyn said,

    Hey hon. Just letting you know I stopped by!

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