Getting seriously hurt doing the one thing you love the most sucks. Add that to my injury list (click here and here to see it)! Being sidelined and waiting to heal can be horrible both physically and mentally. I can relate because, this past June, I swung a bat during BP in the cages and I BROKE MY BACK!! Seriously……Despite, training, warming up and trying to be prepared for the season – Bad things can happen. The tendon in between my shoulder blade and spine also got damaged while it pulled of a chunk of my spine from the force of the swing. I could barely walk and move for awhile. The ER docs originally thought I broke a rib and punctured my lung. Turned out that my C7 vertebra was broke and T1 vertebra, fractured. The sports orthopedic docs I saw had never seen an injury like this happen to a baseball player ever!! EVER!! They said, “It’s a real case study!” – especially, because I’m a healthy 14 yr old. Of course it happened to me, having the worst luck with injuries. So, just as the season started, I broke my back and struggled to deal with it for the entire summer. No baseball, no swimming, no canoeing, no ping pong, YES! – no mowing the lawn 🙂 I’ve been sidelined since then and still have more time to heal fully. So, how do you deal with injury?
Accept it. You’ve just got to say, ” OK I am injured.” It happened and you can’t go back. It sounds simple, but mentally it will eat you away like I experienced. I couldn’t accept not playing and having to watch my team thinking, ”I should be out there!” I would feel incredibly angry and frustrated, which is normal, and kept saying to myself, WHY ME!! I was so upset about being injured that I could barely watch without feeling super down, not to sound like Mr. Daytime Emmy explaining the injury over and over. I didn’t even wanna turn on a Brewers game or even BLOG! I didn’t blog very often because I just couldn’t do it! Once you start to accept the fact that you are injured, you can begin to heal your body and your mind.
Set goals for yourself. Hope to feel this much better by sometime next week. Maybe you can boost your reps in physical therapy by a little bit. Hopefully you have an awesome PT guy (SHOUT OUT TO KEITH)!! Even if it is something little, reaching a goal can start to give you the mindset that you have started to heal and boost you a little.
Distract yourself. If you focus on an injury all day and every day, you mentally will drive yourself crazy like I did. Try not to focus on only what you are missing in your sport. Try something new and maybe it will catch on. Maybe even start a blog 😉 ! I started to teach myself piano to distract myself, cuz it’s cool, and chicks dig musicians…….just sayin. It caught on and now I am about to start lessons. This helped me keep my mind off of my back and gave me something to do.
Be patient!!!! Let the injury heal and don’t jump in too early. To quote my PT, Keith- Omni Orthopedics, “It’s better to be 10 weeks past being fully healed then to go back one day too early and get a huge setback,” which leads to my next point. Expect some little setbacks. You just accidentally move and aggravate it a little. Or maybe a little kid jumps on your back not knowing your hurt, and you have fantasies of throwing him off a bridge – but I digress.
Being anxious and scared of re-injury is totally normal as well! I still DEFINITELY feel like this! To be honest I’ve got nothing about this one. I still am anxious and scared! Any tips?
MORAL OF THE STORY: Be patient, be willing to let your body heal, and most importantly…….BE WELL ROUNDED!!! Find out what else you’re good at, what else you enjoy and become more than what you were.
LASTLY, YOU NEVER WANT TO BE A “CASE STUDY!”
Hope you enjoyed and I hope this helps someone deal with an injury.