When the Universe Has Other Plans for You, Like a Busted Knee

Friday, February 8, 2019

I knew as it was happening: "This is about the be bad." Mike & I were leaving Sauced Taproom & Kitchen in Lakewood, where we'd just had a lovely (& delicious!) date night. We were barely a few steps out the door when I hit a patch of ice... & down I went.

I landed directly on my kneecap &, like, bounced. It was the most sudden & excruciating pain I have experienced, surpassing even the pain of the time I broke my tailbone while sledding. (No, I wasn't a little kid when that happened; I was 21, lol, ughhhh.) So there I am on a street corner in downtown Lakewood, sobbing & screaming & trying to breathe & feeling confident that I have shattered my goddamn knee bones. I genuinely thought I was going to barf on the sidewalk with all of Panera watching on.

I didn't go to the hospital. Instead, Mike helped me hobble home, literally crawling up the front stairs to our apartment, & we did all the right things: Advil, ice, elevation... The next day, a friend brought my crutches, which we were a lifesaver. It continued to be the most painful injury of my life, though, which had me really worried. Still, I didn't think anything was broken - I hadn't heard a pop or snap when I fell - so I didn't get it checked out.

It took me nearly a week to go to urgent care, which I finally did because, once the swelling went down & the scrapes stopped hurting so badly, something felt off in my knee. It was weight-bearing but wobbly, kind of floaty & loose. It made strange noises. It was still swollen.

An X-ray showed that I hadn't broken, dislocated, or fractured anything, thank goodness - but it couldn't show what an MRI might, like a tear or a bone bruise. I was diagnosed as likely having a severe bone bruise with some fluid under the knee & told to continue what I was doing - Advil, ice, elevation - but to stop walking on it, if possible.  I started wearing an ACE bandage to compress it & keep things from wobbling & floating because the PA told me that by walking on it like I had been, I was making the swelling worse & keeping it from fully healing.

And, of course, I was told that I couldn't go back to spinning until I was fully healed & my knee felt "normal."

It still doesn't.

It's been weeks since I completed a Harness Cycle class. My quest for 10 classes, which should've wrapped up in early February, has been put on hold indefinitely - & it's killing me. I miss riding so much - and I forgot to cancel my auto-subscription, so I'm paying for a bunch of classes I can't even go to. I feel out of shape & lazy & I just want to keep riding.

My knee feels a lot better than it did the day I went to urgent care - the ACE bandage definitely helped - but it's still not normal, still not quite right. I can walk a lot better, but I still can't ride. I was told that if it didn't feel healed by the end of this week, I should come in for an MRI - but honestly, I'm having a hard time determining what's going on, what's healing toward normal, what's actually off, etc.

I was so proud of myself for working toward 100 classes. I was getting there, I was doing it, I felt invincible & strong. Because I've never been an athlete, I've also never experienced the agony of a workout that keeps me benched from the "sport" I love - & man, it really sucks.

I know that heath comes first, & in this case, the health of my knee has to come ahead of the healthy benefits of riding. I have to take care of myself. I'm 34, & I can't make my knee worse or I'll end up with a lifetime of knee issues (please, universe, no). I have to rest - but all I want is to start riding again, & when I can, it's going to make class 100 even sweeter.

I'm comin' for ya, 100. Wait for me.

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