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The Man in My Life and I just returned from a wonderful trip to Australia. We felt rested (although tired from the long plane ride ) and de-stressed after three weeks of relaxing on beaches, visiting family, and enjoying the country’s wildlife. The trouble is, we both look terrible. He has shooting pains in his neck and I am now firmly ensconced (or at least my left foot is) in a Walking Boot Cast. Holidays are, apparently, hard on a person.

I had a nasty fall when we were out walking one day in Melbourne. And Gill, if you’re about to say what I think you are, I DID have my good running shoes — the ones with the orthotics and good padding and sturdy frame– on. We were chatting and I was probably gazing up at a tree to find a bird, when my foot went into a pothole the wrong way and I went down on my hands and knees. I was more distressed by the blood on my knees and the torn pants than anything else. I did notice that my left ankle hurt but, after a moment to collect myself, was able to limp back to the house with some help from The Man In My Life. He was very concerned about my fate and was, I suspect, wondering where this Calamity Jane had come from. I used to be rather graceful tottering about in heels. Now, I was bloodied, my knees encrusted with gravel from the path, and my foot turning a terrible shade of purple.

Doing a rapid assessment of my condition, I figured I had perhaps twisted my ankle and bruised some muscle tissue. Nothing major a pack of ice and time wouldn’t fix. Even a few days later, as we took off for a tour of Canberra, I was convinced the ugly black foot was on the mend. The fact that it was swollen so badly I could hardly put on my shoes was a minor annoyance.

When I got back to Canada and told my kids about the foot, they all yelled at me, en masse: “Go to the doctor, Mom! You may have broken something. You DO have osteoporosis and those poor, disfigured feet of yours are a liability.”

As much as I argued, they would have none of it. And so I found myself in the doctor’s office, putting my deformed foot on display. “I don’t think you’ve broken anything,” he said. “But just to be on the safe side, let’s do an x-ray.” I could tell, by the sideways glances he was giving my still black foot, that he was going to have nightmares that night.

The x-rays revealed that I had a tiny fracture just at the tip of my ankle bone. No other bone damage but, to keep it from healing badly, a Walking Boot Cast was ordered. Crap! Not only do I have to limit my walking for 6 weeks, I have to wear this clunky contraption everywhere AND, the killer is that I have to admit that my children, especially Gill, were right! You have no idea how much that pains me.The foot will heal but my “Mother Knows Best’ creds have taken a serious hit. Now, the first time I tell Gill to go to the doctor about her Crohn’s, she’s going to say,” Oh, really? So now you’re the authority on when it’s time to see the doctor, are you? I don’t think so, lady!”

All in all, it’s been a slice this week. My broken furnace had to be replaced, my foot is in a cast, The Man In My Life sat in Emergency for hours to receive the diagnosis that it may have been the long plane trip that caused his neck pains, and The Pig died. I can hardly wait to see what this next week brings.

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