These shoes ain’t meant for walkin’

OK. I know these are a rather ugly pair of black shoes.  But they were only used as my schlepping around shoes. I wouldn’t dine in a fancy restaurant in them, and did feel bad on the few occasions I wore them to Kindergarten.

And the thing is, I was planning to replace them in a few weeks.  Especially after I slipped in them last week; I thought to myself, these shoes aren’t even safe anymore. I need to get myself a new pair. So, I had a warning and could have avoided what happened to me this past Monday afternoon.

I was following Little T on his bike, on route to his playdate at a farm around the corner from our house, wearing the ugly black shoes. Once in awhile he needed a little help to push off.  During one of the pushes, my left foot slipped on some uneven sidewalk and a shot of pain suddenly rushed through my foot. Scared to get up, I crouched down on the ground while Little T ran his bike bell in my ear. I slowly got up and attempted to stand on my left foot. No problem! Breathing a sigh of relief, we continued on to his playdate.  Later, I walked to two grocery stores, and only started to notice on the way home that my foot was starting to hurt.

On the way to pick Little T up, my foot REALLY started to hurt.  On the way back home, I suddenly wondered if I would have to crawl home.  I made it inside and to the couch, and realized I was in need of some help. However, hubby was 5 hours away but I called him anyway sobbing.

I think the hardest part was accepting the reality that I would have to call a friend for help, as I hate being a burden on someone.  The friend I called immediately said she would take me to the hospital and instructed me to get ice on my foot in case there was a broken bone.  Knowing someone was on the way allowed me to ease up on the panic.  While waiting for her to arrive, Little T started to bring me jewelry from his pirate collection, some coins, and promised to be a good boy.  What a sweetheart!

My friend arrived with her two kids (who were amazing) and immediately took over. She asked where my health insurance file was, wondered if we should pack a bag in case I had to stay the night (now THAT freaked me out), made sure all my windows were closed, and grabbed a pair of shoes for me to wear.  But, the shoes she grabbed were THOSE shoes, and when I explained that I was wearing them when I slipped, she instantly understood why and informed me that I should have thrown them in the garbage long ago. 

The hospital we went to was under construction, so the emergency  entrance was hard to find. She found the entrance normally reserved for ambulances, parked the car, went into the hospital and returned with a chair normally reserved for ambulance deliveries.  My friend has more guts than I!  As she can speak German fluently, she handled all the registration process, and got me settled into the waiting room.  It was only then that I finally had the chance to ask her how her day was.

“Oh, I was in bed most of the day with a migraine”.

And here she was, helping me.  Words cannot describe how grateful I felt at that moment.  To witness a kind act made by another is so illuminating. Since she was still fighting off the fatigue of a migraine, and I was dealing with the pain shooting from my foot (and the fear of how much the entire ordeal would cost, as the admissions person informed me that I had to pre-pay all the expenses and claim them later through my insurance) the two of us passed a lot of the time quietly reading magazines.  Even though we were both in our own kind of pain, there was a comfortable feeling between us (that I felt, anyway. My friend may have been thinking, “Why did I let my daughter answer Heather’s call???!”)

To skip all the boring details, 4 hours later and after an x-ray, we learned that I just sprained my foot. Nothing broken. No overnight visit (Halleluiah!) and the cost? 37 Euros! I didn’t have any cash on me, so my friend again helped me out.  The nurse seemed very irritated by my bill, commenting that she had to take her cat in last week for something similar and it cost her over 100 Euros. 

On Tuesday I was on crutches, on Wednesday I could limp without crutches, and yesterday I could walk normally only feeling a little tenderness.  How quickly my foot heeled astounds me.  Had I known, I wouldn’t have put my friend through all of that.  But as Hubby reminded me, I didn’t know, and if it my foot was broken, waiting a few days wouldn’t have been good.

The experience this past week taught me a lot.  It reminded me of how important family support can be, as relying on friends is difficult. But, it made me grateful that I have a few good friends here. Since it happened, other friends and mothers I have just gotten to know at Kindergarten all told me that I could have called them, or can call them anytime I need help in the future.  The support and kindness I have felt this week brings me to tears.  I am honoured to have witness the  human spirit at its finest.

And for the crutches? I now have a new device to get spiders.

3 thoughts on “These shoes ain’t meant for walkin’

  1. I too have a pair of old ugly black shoes that kevin desperately wants me to get rid of….but I won’t. they are so comfy and don’t hurt my feet. Maybe I should reconsider.
    hope you are well. and go spend some euros and get some new shoes for heaven sake!


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