Tuesday, August 28, 2012

How Not to Break Your Wrist

Just days after my last post, I went rollerblading with my dog. That morning, I had done Pilates with a friend, and I had plans to go biking with my mom and niece in the afternoon. I had all the exercise that I needed already lined up, but my dog was wandering around, whining, so I decided to give her a run. It was going to be fairly short, and we weren't going to tackle any hills, so I made the decision to skip wearing my knee pads and wrist guards. I almost always wear them - ever since the guy who sold me my first in-line skates since I was a kid told me to "at least wear wrist guards. If you skin your knee, that's one thing, but if you break your wrist, that's a whole summer." But I hadn't fallen all year. I didn't need the pads.

Well, pride goes before a fall...

As I lost my balance, I remember thinking that I couldn't fall because I would break my wrist. But it was too late. I broke my wrist and needed four stitches in my chin. Not only will it take weeks to heal, but I had to have (expensive) surgery, I'm missing work, and I'm on some pretty potent pain meds. It could be worse, and I am so gratefully it isn't, but still, these are a lot of consequences for one silly decision. Especially when I am fairly certain I would be perfectly fine, had I worn my pads; I hadn't fallen recently, but I had fallen in the past with my pads and didn't just the least bit hurt.

I was wearing my helmet when I fell. I went to school with a girl who lost her sense of taste and smell when she fell rollerblading without a helmet. Would my injuries have been worse without the helmet? I don't know that it ever hit the ground this time (my chin seems to have hit, mostly), but I am certain it is not worth the risk.

The moral of the story: Wear protective gear. If you're driving, wear your seatbelt. On your bike, wear your helmet. The temporary annoyance or "uncool" factor doesn't last nearly as long as the consequences of skipping precautions. Also, by the way, take a phone along. I didn't, but was blessed enough that a compassionate stranger was there to call my husband for help (and to bring me ice and something for my chin). That's not a chance I'll take again, either.

I've been asked if my rollerblading days are over. No, they aren't. Both my dog and I love our adventures. But, you can bet I won't do it again without the right gear. Please learn from my mistake.

Thank you, Lord, for all the ways and times you've protected me. Thank you, thank you.

Your Sister

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