dark nights

I have been angry, fed up and just plain miserable all evening .

My ribs hurt more than I would ever have believed was possible for such an invisible injury, and it’s nearly two weeks now, and I have no idea whether I should be trying to rest as much as possible, or just swallowing all-the-drugs and attempting to carry on as normal, because nobody will give me any coherent advice. The NHS does critical OK, but it’s crap at this kind of thing. And I feel obliged to smile and be cheerful and joke about it, and really I’m not laughing at all.

I felt guilty today because I was off work sick, but I actually went out and enjoyed myself. I thought my head was even more in need of delicate handling than the ribs after three days bored-and-lonely at home (and I am neverever bored so long as I feel I have choices, but right now it doesn’t feel like I do.) I walked three and a half miles, very slowly and carefully, on the flat. By the time I got back to the car, I was sweating and shaking and attracting offers of help from rambling pensioners.

I cannot express how much I hate this. I have worked so hard all this year to reach a reasonable level of fitness, and even managed to lose a tiny amount of weight, and being able to walk right up a hill without stopping actually made me feel good about myself, and now sitting around the house all day scares me, because I can see how easily that will slip away.

And then my mother phoned up to tell me how stupid and clumsy I was (I am going to have a tactful, but firm way to ban father-in-law from speaking to her, he is not getting it), and to ask whether I thought there could be something wrong with my bones, because this was the second bone I’d broken this year. No mention of my father or just exactly how my collarbone got broken, because, y’know, it’s all always got to be my fault. There are no words for the loud screamy mess that was the inside of my head at the end of that phone call.

But then I went outside. and there’s a sky full of stars, and Jupiter is huge and bright, and very very far away…



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11 responses to “dark nights

  1. Rosie

    I went to look at stars too, and it was beautiful.
    Ribs hurt and take forever to heal, and I also thought I was going to expire from boredom and being stuck inside with my head. Also, I was scared of riding again, but even more scared of being too scared ever to ride again.
    I sympathise muchly, enough to be typing this in the dark as my roommate is asleep. I assure you that it does heal eventually, and you will be able to get fit again, cos you’ve managed it already.
    Finally, I am sending you very gentle hugs.

  2. Jupiter is wonderful. Broken ribs not. Holding you in my thoughts.

  3. Liz

    *hugs lots but very carefully*

    Is blocking the phone number an option or do you not want to go that far?

  4. It sounds so painful, I hope you start feeling better soon and if nothing else, regaining your fitness gives you an excuse to go out and lots of lovely walks x

  5. cara

    not the reply you want to hear, but from personal experience ribs take about 6 weeks to heal, at least I remember wishing that breathing was optional for about 4-5 weeks and then realising that one night I went to sleep and didn’t need the pillow.
    I do remember that no analegesia seemed to make any difference so just stuck it out, during the day but at night took a tramadol just because it made me drowsy so I slept a bit. Advice I got was use a pillow to prop the side with the side with the # and lay on that side not the good one as your breathing becomes more shallow on a night.
    hope you feel better soon

    • How much did you rest whilst waiting for the ribs to mend? I cannot find a sensible answer on this anywhere. Am I better to grit my teeth, ignore the pain and carry on, or to rest as much as possible for a bit longer?

      • cara

        There’s no real answer, just rest when you need to and do whatever you can. The reason it hurts is because your’e breathing and the rib cage moves with every breath, the harder you breathe the more it will hurt, so anything that involves exertion will make it hurt more.
        Crap, but it really does take time, and a lot of it……
        Do you have the crackly paper sound over the break? cause that was fun, not, it made breathing worse and appeared at around the two week mark
        at about 4 weeks I found walking easier and by 5 weeks sleeping became routine again, but the first 4 weeks were horrible and I was well pissed off
        no hugs (cause they really hurt) but enjoy the coffee buns..

  6. dawn

    I really wish I could wave the magic wand to make them better – and I wish even more that it was your b****y mother who’d got broken ribs and not you!

    Many very gentle hugs and much love x

  7. Catriona

    Don’t feel guilty about going out when you’re off sick – if it makes you feel better, then you must do it. I would also think seriously about screening your calls and just not answering when your mother rings. (Although I am sure you have considered this). And sorry that the NHS has not been very helpful. Your ribs will get better: it’s just difficult to know how long it will take, which isn’t helpful either. Take care.

  8. Heather

    Much sympathy. I can only recommend opiates and Gin until you recaltriant bones behave as they should.

    PS: Would nasty Vit D/ Calcium supplements help. Last week the GP seemed to think they helped fix almost everything. Pity they taste so foul!

  9. Stella

    Triangulation with your father-in-law, no sympathy, and trying to imply there must be something wrong with you. That’s the second time in a matter of weeks I’ve felt the urge to scream Narcissistic Personailty Disorder!!

    Stress is no good for recovery! Get caller ID and play out.

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