Around this time of year, the waning weeks near the middle of winter (honestly it's winter until April in Canada, you just gotta deal with it) I really struggle with motivation and direction in all aspects of my life. I've suffered from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) for probably most of my life, but only really realized a few years ago. Normally I try to tackle this by traveling or working out more, booking events, meetups and hobbies to keep myself active, energetic and socialized.
Except this year I had to scrap pretty much all those plans because I sprained my ankle. Badly.
Just about three weeks ago I was participating in a work-event at a trampoline gym, an event I voted for us to do! The space had trampoline dodgeball, trampoline puzzles, a free-play area and even a rope climbing course, everything that you needed to get some good team-building done. And it all seemed to be going swimmingly... until approximately 10 minutes in when my foot got wedged between the trampoline and the edge of the trampoline and while I flew forward, my ankle certainly did not.
Not 24 hours later I was in an aircast with multiple xrays, ultrasounds and other fun doctoral/hospital activities to follow in the coming weeks. Turns out that not only did I sprain my ankle, I tore several ligaments and have significant bruising on my foot. I'm seeing a physiotherapist 1-2x a week and have activities to help me strengthen my ankle, so perhaps by mid-to-late spring I'll be back to full strength.
To make matters slightly worse, over the last three weeks we've had some of the most extreme winters Toronto has seen in a half-fozen years. Combine an aircast with the icy, slippery conditions and I basically can't travel anywhere without a car. The closest accessible subway station about half a kilometre away and the buildings on my street have been less than helpful by refusing to shovel and ice their walks. Lyft has been my best friend this month, and it's an expensive friend.
To say it's been frustrating is the understatement of the year.
How can I combat my SAD if I can't GO anywhere. I "max" out my walking after about 500m on clear, dry ground (which has only happened for 3-4 days in the last 3 weeks) which means I can either get a donut or go to Shoppers Drug Mart, that's about it. Awful weather means it's hard to convince people to come to me (the ones who have, I love you!) and life just goes on.
So here's what I've been doing to tackle this unfortunate set of circumstances...
- I've continued my Marie Kondo'ing of my life (please refer to my previous post where I purged my clothes) and we've tackled the kitchen, our clothes again, books (I just said goodbye to over 100!) and next up is the dreaded paper and 'komono'. It feels good to spend some time focusing on enhancing my home, especially since I'm spending more time here than usual.
- Absolutely vegging out. I'm not one to sit and watch hours and hours of TV or movies, but considering I'm literally doctor-ordered to rest with my foot elevated for several hours a day, I'm doing just that. My current Netflix recommendations? Russian Doll, Instant Hotel and Derry Girls, and I've been finishing Ni No Kuni II on Playstation 4!
- Setting up for a digital detox. I've recently unsubscribed from hundreds of email lists, I've whittled my inbox from over 2,000 emails to about 700 and dropping, and I've set timers on my devices to make sure I'm not spending too much time on any app. More on this in the coming weeks.
- Organizing my finances. I realized I hadn't turned back on my automatic deposits since starting work full-time again in the fall, so I went through all my savings and investing accounts and optimized them. Phew!
Here's what I haven't been doing.
BLOGGING. I think I fell into a bit of a pity-hole. I didn't feel interesting, or creative, or even very verbose. Every time I sat down in front of my computer it was like "WHY BOTHER". But I know that being open and writing things down is part of my process, even in the course of writing this post, I felt a weight off my shoulders and felt more free.
So here's my plan. Even if it's dull and boring, I'm going to try to do a weekly update about my progress, because I think it's good to document my battle against both things simultaneously even just to watch my trajectory in retrospect.
This isn't really beauty or lifestyle related, so I know it's not what some people come here to read, and that's ok. There might be some beauty along the way, being stuck at home DOES make me more likely to paint my nails and wear face-masks, so look forward to more of that in the coming weeks.
Otherwise, please send me healing vibes or share your stories about getting over ankle injuries in the comments!