So last night as I was leaving Ben’s 27th baseball game in three days, I was carrying too much and as I stepped over the wooden fence to get to my car, I whacked the top of my left foot on the wooden post. Hard.
After a few choice words I limped to my car and cursed myself – literally – for not being more careful. When I got home (foot throbbing), I noticed that I was bleeding. Despite the mind-numbing pain, I put a wet paper towel and a bag of frozen peas on it, propped it on a pillow and went to bed.
“I’m fine, right?” I asked Andy. “You’re totally fine,” he told me, “the fact that it’s bruised and swollen is fine, your foot just needs to heal.” After 14 years of marriage he’s learned that telling me what I want to hear is always the best course of action.
After keeping it elevated today during work, I had decided that I would take it easy, “walk it off” and wait for it to feel better. There was no way I was going to the ER and DEFINITELY no way I was going to settle for it being really injured, because that would destroy my summer plans.
At tonight’s baseball game I asked for the expert opinion of a friend who’s an oncology nurse but as she was heading to work and even had her scrubs on I figured that I was covered (right?!). Her raised eyebrows and insistence that I ice it more and “keep an eye on it” made it clear that perhaps I may just be shrugging off something I shouldn’t be.
I mean seriously, busy parents out there, who has time to go to the doctor? Or the patience to sit through x-rays (oh and that co-pay alone that could be better spent on things like swim trunks for the boys or hell, more wine to numb the pain)? I had a full day of work, a tournament game of Ben’s to attend and kids to ferry around. An injured foot, for the love of GOD? I don’t think so. That is SO not fitting into my life right now.
I remember my father falling off a ladder when he was in his late 70s. My younger sister still tells the story about how, despite the fact that he was clearly in severe pain, Dad had told her not to call the ambulance because “Christ, I’ll walk it off. I’ll be fine.” When he eventually wound up in a cast (broken foot), we never let him forget it. As I recall, he didn’t want to go sit in the ER and suffer the co-pay.
Where EVER do I get this from?
My Mom says it’s the Irish in me…we don’t go to the doctor unless there is an actual organ protruding from our bodies and as for a high fever, I learned from her long ago that after a hand to the forehead, you say to the child that “You-ah cool as a cucumbah,” feed them a Bufferin or Baby Aspirin (at least in 1977) and off to school you go. We are tough stock. Not exactly Mensa candidates, but tough nonetheless.
Of course, if one of the kids had done this I’d have them in the doctors office so fast their eyes would spin but I’ll be honest, much of the reason would be that if they had gotten injured, it would mean time off of sports and constant complaining at home. Then they’d REALLY be injured.
So do as I say, not as I do, kids. That’s my prerogative as parent. I’m Irish. And I’m tough.
Just don’t step on my foot.