Sunday, August 4, 2019

What I Learned From Breaking My Leg.


Around two months back, at the end of May, I broke my ankle. I was actually on holiday in Switzerland with my boyfriend and his family and while hiking a mountain it happened. I slipped and immediately knew I broke my bones. It had to be operated right away and due to the fact that I was on top of a mountain surrounded by snow, I had to be picked up by a helicopter. Yes, it does sound quite dramatic but to me, it was all such a blur that it doesn't even feel that dramatic. 

However, the two months following my accident were actually the hardest part. Not being able to walk for six weeks straight and still having to use crutches to this day for walking outside the house really takes a toll on you and your mental health. It is funny how you can take the smallest things for granted, like being able to pop out and go to the grocery store alone, cleaning the house or simply going down a few stairs to go and get the post. I am a lot better now and make progress every day. Today I was reflecting on the past eight weeks and how much that time actually taught me, besides wearing supportive hiking shoes. So I thought I would share with you what I learned from breaking my leg. 

1. It's okay to slow down.
One of the main things I struggled with, especially in the beginning, was that I wasn't able to live as fast-paced as I normally do. Every little thing took so much longer and I simply needed to slow down in every aspect of my life. On top of that, I was in the process of applying for jobs. Even though I was obviously able to send my applications and work on my laptop, but going to interviews was a bit more tricky. But I did it. With crutches and my cast, I went to a few interviews after about 4 weeks post-accident and I never had the impression that it hindered the interview in any way. (And I actually just got an amazing job offer! YAY). 

2. Sometimes, you got to accept some mess.
My boyfriend knows how much I need to have tidiness around me. I just hate things to be out of place and I simply can't go to bed before the house is tidy and neat. Obviously, I was not able to tidy... at all. And while my boyfriend still had his shifts at the hospital and on top of that had to drive me around to doctors appointments, interviews, and physiotherapy, while managing the household... our flat got pretty messy at times. Obviously, I can't expect him to tidy up as much as I would, especially while having so much on his plate already, but I have to admit that it was kind of stressful for me at times to just sit and watch the chaos while not being able to do anything about it. But thankfully I am now back to tidying like a mad woman again, haha.. 

3. Try and find the bright side.
I am thankfully a quite optimistic person, so I didn't necessarily need to learn how to see the bright side. But my accident definitely reminded me of how important it is to see the positive in things. Maybe I just needed this time to slow down. However, one of the first things I said after coming out of surgery and seeing my boyfriend and his family was that I was actually glad it happened to me and not them. And while they wear laughing, I was actually not joking. While the surgery was going on I thought about how much more inconvenient it would have been for anyone of my boyfriends family, who needed to take a 12-hour flight a week later, to have had this accident. So I guess I was lucky in being unlucky. You could say I took one for the team.

4. Accepting help is fine.
Another hard one for me. I am normally a very self-sufficient person who loves to do everything on her own. I do not like to ask for help unless there is absolutely no other way. And now I needed help with everything. And I mean E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G. I couldn't get into the shower without help, I couldn't carry a cup of tea from the kitchen to the living room without help... So accepting help was a big lesson for me. And I really think we all should ask for help from time to time. And please don't break a leg just to learn this lesson!

5. Don't take the small things for granted.
I never appreciated being able to walk and being so independent. And seeing how much I struggled with this short term inability to do anything I want, it really taught me to appreciate the small things. We all should just be grateful for what we have, even if we are just healthy and happy. There is nothing more important than that. 

& most importantly: always wear the right kind of shoes kids!

x Lisa
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