Monday, August 31, 2009

The plight of the wounded

Late Sunday afternoon to early evening.

I expected to be battling hard at the Cosgrove scrimmage, then chilling out (Oh, bother; what is the term people like to use these days? Chillaxing?) with teammates at a pool party -- sans pool given the unseasonably cool weather.

Instead I sat on a friend's couch with my left foot propped on up on a large plastic container of kitty litter, icing a sizable contusion with a thin fillet of frozen tilapia.

A night of skating at the Wellman Rink with friends on the eve of the scrimmage seemed innocent enough. But fate can be cruel, and I took a hard fall onto my knees in trying to avoid running over a young girl who obliviously skated into my path. The pain, though intense at first, subsided in the minutes afterwards and I continued to skate for another hour or so. In the dark and neon fluorescent lighting of the rink, I could not see the angry red sea of internal bleeding occurring at the site, the result of ruptured capillaries. It wasn't until I got home some two hours later that the extent of it was apparent.

Perhaps I am being overly dramatic. My ability to skate after the injury and the fact that the pain, while smart, was not overly mind-numbing told me that there wasn't a more severe underlying injury, such as a fracture, torn ligament or sprain. For that I am quite relieved, though originally I was concerned the bruise was severe enough that I would be out of action for a fortnight -- an eternity for someone who thrives on athletic activity. Indeed, the heat of inflammation from my knee could probably warm a one-bedroom apartment.

But, after two straight days of elevating and icing my knee for 20-minute periods throughout the day, I can offer that the pain has decreased markedly. The bruise has changed from a bright red to a dull purple -- the result of the hemoglobin breaking down, or so I have read. Rather than risk aggravating it more by doing my usual running, I have been walking on the treadmill on a stiff incline in an effort to maintain my fitness.

The pain has decreased enough that I am even entertaining ideas of skating in Wednesday's practice -- something that seemed out of the question as recently as yesterday. Naturally rushing back and reaggravating the contusion (the very thought of being knocked on my knees during a jam bringing tears to my eyes) is a concern but I suppose I have all of tomorrow and most of Wednesday to treat it with more 20-minute compresses --this time with heat-- and elevations. Worse come to worst, I will skip it and make my return at Sunday's practice.

The silver lining of the whole Wellman Skate Rink visit was that I was able to touch base finally with Teresa, the manager. She seems eager to host a meet-and-greet with the Old Capitol City Roller Girls where we will possibly perform a mock scrimmage and then fans will have the opportunity to skate with us. We are just in the process of nailing down/voting on a date, something I expected to have posted in the next few weeks or so. It'd likely would not be until late November or early December, and would be a fun event to close out the year with after a long season of bouts and fundraisers.


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