I Sprained My Left Ankle
I twisted my left ankle at work recently during one of those embarrassing little missteps …you know, a stumble over your own two feet. I stopped for a second, let the pain subside and carried on, limping slightly for the next 20 steps or so, cursing the uneven floor I’d stumbled over. I didn’t think about it again until later that day when I noticed that my ankle was a bit sore … nothing major … slight discomfort just beneath that bone that protrudes on the outside of your foot/ankle … the lateral malleolus. When the darn thing was still nagging a few days later, I was at a bit of a loss as to why. “It shouldn’t still be hurting.” I mumbled to myself. “I stumbled … that’s all.” As I contemplated this odd situation, idly rubbing in a big squirt of Rub – A535, a memory from long ago came floating by and I chuckled as I went back to that day in 1967 when I sprained my left ankle …
‘Twas a beautiful spring morning … a typical weekday in the house on 64th Avenue. Dad of course was long gone to work. Randy and Terry had just left. Mom was downstairs doing laundry. She hollered out at Russ and I to remind one of us to let Sheba out. Since I was already sitting at the back landing getting ready to go meet my pals for our daily walk to school, I called Sheba, opened the back door and reached down to hook up her leash. When I looked up, I saw a big brown dog standing there at the rear of the yard, looking at us. The instant Sheba spotted him, she started barking her head off then bolted out the door determined to … well, I don’t know what. Thinking that she would be eaten alive, brave me (hahaha) ran out right behind her, yelling at the stray dog to get lost. As I started down the 3 steps of the wooden porch, I stumbled on the second step. My left foot rolled over and I felt instant pain in my ankle. I ended up doing one of those long-legged stumble/tumbles down last the step, over the sidewalk and onto the lawn where I fell down. I sat there, writhing in pain, tears streaming down my face. As Russ came out the back door, he took one look at me and ran back inside to get Mom. I don’t know what became of the big brown dog … he must run off when Sheba and I starting charging toward him.
Mom helped me get up and back over to the step where we sat for a few minutes. She rubbed my ankle and listened intently as I sobbed my way through the telling of what had just happened. When the pain went down, she stood up, reassured me that it would fine in a little while and sent me hobbling off to school.
My next clear memory of the day is from late in the afternoon … a half hour or so before school let out. I sat there at my desk trying to concentrate on whatever Mrs. Goucher, my grade 4 teacher was attempting to get across. My poor ankle was hurting so badly! Although we were supposed to wear our shoes at all times while in class, when the pain became almost unbearable, I reached down and unlaced my blue canvas shoe. As I gently removed it, I was shocked at the size of my ankle! When Ms. Goucher noticed that I wasn’t paying attention, she started heading my way and asked what I was doing. I looked up and said, “My ankle hurts … I don’t think I can walk on it.” She took a quick look at it and told me to leave my shoe off for now.
The pain was getting worse and I was certain that my ankle was getting bigger. When the bell finally rang, I tried to put my shoe back on but there was no way. I stood up and tried to take a step. Again, no way. I sat down at my desk, fighting back tears. Mrs. Goucher took another look and, when she realized that my ankle was truly injured, she offered to drive me home. As the classroom emptied of kids, Mrs. Goucher buzzed the office and told them to call my Mom to let her know that I’d be home soon. She erased the blackboards, cleared her desk and then went across the hall to get Mrs. Cuthield. The trip out to Mrs. Goucher’s car seemed to take forever, me hopping on my good foot while the 2 teachers supported me, one on each arm, making sure I didn’t lose my balance. Oh, how my ankle hurt!
I remember how strange it felt sitting there in the front seat of Mrs. Goucher’s car … sort of like I was somewhere that I wasn’t supposed to be. Of course I’d seen her car everyday in the staff parking area at the back of school on the tarmac where we played at recess but it was weird actually being in her car. I gave her directions to my house and when we pulled up a few minutes later, my Mom was already heading down the front steps. She and Mrs. Goucher helped me out of the car and into the house. That feeling of strangeness was even stronger now … my teacher was standing at the front door chatting with my Mom! Now that was a first! I heard Mom say thanks one more time as Mrs. Goucher waved good-bye and headed back down the steps.
Mom wrapped my ankle in a cold, wet cloth. When Dad got home from work, they loaded me into the car and off we went to University Hospital. X-rays confirmed there were no broken bones. “A nasty sprain of that left ankle.”, the doctor said. He wrapped it in a “compression bandage” and sent us on our way with instructions that I was to stay off it for at least a few days – no weight bearing at all, that Mom could be give me Aspirin for the pain and that I was to keep my leg and foot elevated.
My memory of the incident is patchy after leaving the hospital. I know I didn’t go to school for a couple of days as I was in a lot of pain and I couldn’t walk. How long my sprained left ankle took to heal though, I don’t recall which probably means that the recovery was rather uneventful.
I’m sure I was reminded of the day I sprained my left ankle as the pain brought on by that little stumble awhile back is in the very same vicinity! Not as intense by far as it was back in Grade 4 … heavens no! But it’s certainly taking it’s time to stop hurting! I’m wondering if I might have irritated a bit of scar tissue at the site of the original injury … hmm, I’ll have to run that past the doctor next time I’m in to see her, or not … I’m sure my ankle will have recovered by then and I’ll have forgotten all about it!