Daithí, Reeling in the fears

I recently sprained my mental health, twisted it badly. I’m on crutches for a couple of weeks, possibly longer. “What happened?” they said.  Happened out of nowhere. I was driving home one day, pulled into the driveway and then BANG! It just went from under me. I managed to get inside and to sit down and have a look. It was swollen and ugly. Bruised and delicate. The slightest touch and slightest movement just too much to handle and I was worried I might cause more damage.

“It doesn’t look too bad” they said.

Most of the strain can’t be seen, the damage is on the inside and it’s very slow to recover.

“There’s a couple of exercises you can do to help” they said.

They do help but once I stop I can feel the pain again and it gets worse as the day goes on. By night time I’m curled up in agony and I struggle to sleep with it. I was told to wrap a bandage around it for support if I’m going out. That will keep it stable and no one will notice. I leave the crutches at home too and try not to hobble because I don’t want to bring any attention to myself. I hope it gets better soon, I want to get back into things properly but it seems to be getting worse. I’m reading loads of stuff about how to make it better and I’ve asked a couple of people for advice.

“Have you talked to anyone?? they say. Well I’m talking to you.

The swelling isn’t going down so I keep taking painkillers which stops the ache but only for a while. It’s gotten so bad now I haven’t gone to work. The lads have been on to me about playing football later. “I can’t play, I’m injured”. “You’ll be grand sure, run it off”

I went for a scan. “There’s nothing broken”they said.

It’s getting worse now. Can’t move at all and I’m uncomfortable all over. The pain is on my face and I’m complaining all the time. Telling everyone and hobbling around. “Does he ever stop?” they say, “sure there’s nothing wrong with him”

I’m ashamed now. I’m embarrassed. I can’t handle the pain. I’m weak.

I’m not going to work. Not going to football. I’m going nowhere because the person who is going nowhere will always get there. The swelling is going down, but there’s plenty of marks and scars. I’m left with a limp.

“What happened?” they say.

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