Sometimes you should remind yourself that walking is a gift.
If something is giving you daily a sweet reminder of precisely that, you are truly blessed.
14 months ago, I broke three ligaments at my left ankle playing basketball with friends on the streets of my hometown Bochum. One second after it happened I immediately knew that this is not gonna be a common injury, the pain I felt was not normal.
I knew that there would come a lot of time without practicing the sport I love, without playing Basketball.
What I did not know, that this time would change my life forever.
I felt once the same physical pain, when I had broken my left arm which was aside breaking bent by 17-degree. It meant six weeks without sport at all. (If you do not consider playing FIFA as a sport.)
So, after it happened, I knew tough weeks are on the way.
I called my Mom, and she took me to the hospital. In the hospital, they did not take my injury seriously. They did one test and said that my ankle is not broken. They even denied that a ligament is damaged. My mother was happy with the news. But I knew that this would not be the end of the story. Feeling the same pain, I experience with my broken arm, not having a bad injury, just felt too good to be true.
Obviously, you can be happy as f*** when you go to the emergency hospitalization, and they do not pay special attention to you. Then you are one of the luckiest persons in that building, not fighting to survive.
My ankle did not get any special treatment. I lied in bed all day long, body filled with drugs to suppress the pain. Monday Morning I finally got to the doctor and received the news that I expected to receive. My doctor shook his head and told me compassioned: I had a similar injury to my ankle. For one year, I was not able to run properly. Just letting you know the truth and the months that lie ahead of you.“
One year without running? That would mean at least one and a half year without playing a proper game of Basketball. I fought back my tears, not allowing myself to cry in front of my doctor. At night I cried alone in my bed, wallowed in self-pity.
A month before I received, the affirmation that I can go to Barcelona studying at my dream university while living at a phenomenal location. Back then I thought that only a disease or an injury could stop me from going there and stop me from finally realizing my dreams. Because of the injury, I had to postpone my flight.
I got aggressive and upset But willing to fight. I will make it to Barcelona – even though injured. Someday that will be a good story to tell. I thought.
The first days without sport I felt like a drug addict on detox, not consuming his drug. My body missed the dopamine and all the other good stuff that comes with doing sports. For two weeks, my brother took me every day with his car to the doctor, so that I could get Laser therapy and Electrotherapy. For the next month crutches became my companion. I felt blessed that my siblings helped me out where they could. My sister helped me to overcome the incredibly long distance between bed and kitchen, those 5 meters that I walked for so many times without even thinking about it. I was blessed that mon frère, Adrien Rossler, was hanging around with me all the time while I could not leave the house – we watched a lot of excellent films. (Wutprobe was not one of them hahaha).
My ankle got better day by day.
I learned again that taking baby steps to make progress is essential.
And in this case, it was literally taking baby steps till I could walk properly again.
I was blessed that in my first days in Barcelona I met amazing people, especially Johannes and Gaia, that helped me out were they could. Not to forget Hünkar, wh gave me a hand so that I could enter the sea.
I was blessed that Kate, Larissa and Alex took care of my crutches while I was more standing than dancing in the club, not letting rob this injury my first nights of parting in Barcelona.
Helping in difficult times, defines friendship and defines excellent people. I highly appreciated the support you all gave me, a big hug to all of you!!! You made this painful time enjoyable.
Till today I feel pain after playing Basketball, I feel pain after playing Football, I feel pain after doing my leg workout in the gym, and even after dancing a night in a club. Every morning in the shower I am giving my ankle a cold bath to prepare him for the day.
But you know what? I love it. It’s not that I like the pain or the fact that my ankle never will be the same like before. I love it because it changed me to the better. This injury made me stronger, and first and foremost it gave me a change of perspective. Reminding me, that walking is a gift, makes me thankful and happy everyday.
And not just that!
Being able to do sports, is a gift. Being able to dance, is a gift. Being able to run into the water at the beach is a gift.
My doctor could not run for a year.
After eight months during one day, I could walk through the streets of Barcelona without feeling any pain, playing a proper game of Basketball, lifting 100 kilos doing squats in the gym, heading to the beach afterward, feeling the sand under my feet while running into the cold sea, and all that during one day.
Could you wish for more?
I definitely can’t! I dreamed of a day like these since the first dark days after crying in bed. The once small things turned into the most significant things.
To everybody who is right now struggling with injuries, I wish you the fastest and best recovery possible. May you be able very quickly to live a blessed day doing the sports and the things you love without an injury holding you back.
If you can’t walk right now, I tell you, the moment when you walk without thinking of your injury will be priceless. It is the sweetest moment you will experience.