Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Dear Knees. I'm sorry.

Dear Knees,

What can I say? I'm sorry. Again.

I've put you through a lot over the years. Fanatical running because you can't argue with crazy. Running in ice storms, tornado warnings, pavement, pavement, pavement.

Hiking with monster packs. Refusing to take said packs off when leaning over, way over, to clean out waterbars on the trail. (Psst! Hikers! Notice waterbars on your trails. Enjoy them. Think about the poor souls who dig them out.)  Tree branches whacking you. Falling down that talus slope that I just had to climb. Falling on that slab of rock in Ford's Terror.  Lunges. Squats with heavy weights, before I knew how much strain it was. Hiking mega miles in one day. Worn out running shoes. I know. I know.

I've tried not to be abusive since the surgery. All it took was the PT saying, "I'd love to tell you that you will be climbing Bear Mountain this spring, but I just don't know." Turns out I wasn't, not for a year. It isn't until something goes wrong that you realize how much your identity is caught up in what you like to do.  I was the girl who runs, for years and years, until I wasn't.

Haven't I changed? I laid off the marathons. I'm backpacking light. I do yoga! This latest incident was just a fluke, a hidden rock in the trail. I was fed up, that's all, with all the Midwest 80 degrees lawnmowing nonsense while we got snow, snow, snow. So I drove downcanyon to spring.

And it was all going so well. It wasn't spring yet, not exactly, but this is a good time to be on this trail, before the rattlesnakes and the ticks, even though the river crossings required me to dunk my shoes over and over. But it was warm. Shorts at last, shorts at last!

Here I was at the old line shack, in a tank top!

There's a dark side to trail running, though, and I found it, tripping over a hidden rock. There was that horrible feeling as I flew suspended in mid-air. And you won't be surprised to know that after my initial thought: what's broken? I next thought: Darn it, I won't be able to finish my run!

But I'm proud of you, knees. Even though Left immediately swelled up to four times its normal size, we were still able to jog slowly out (because what was the alternative?). You seem to be coming around now too, the swelling diminishing more every day. The Fingers are crossed that there isn't any permanent damage, and the Brain doesn't think there is.

Knees, I know you've had a tough life with me. We haven't spent a lot of time knitting. All I can say is, hang in there. I'd rather use you and have great memories than stay indoors. Wouldn't you? I know, I know, more ice. I'm on it.

Your friend,

The Klutz

The "trail."


  1. I hope your knee feels better soon!

  2. I use my knees to break sticks ever since I was eleven and I still think they are the best thing ever to get your firewood to a carying size. My poor knees as well. Thanks

  3. NOT a klutz! Those knees have been along...and carried you awesome adventures in awesome places. More ice, rest, elevation, they'll thank you...and carry you on.

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  5. Get better knee! You have to take me on an EPIC hike this summer. :)

  6. *laugh* I'm in month 3 of PT. Two weeks ago, I couldn't help myself. I played hockey and then went rowing. Wouldn't you know it, I slipped on the dock and whacked my knee. My first thought is the boat hurt? My second thought - my PT is going to kill me. I rowed anyway. 15 K later, the knee was ugly, but the rest of me was happy.


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