For the past several years, the kids and I have undertaken local ski races in France. Some of the kids have gotten pretty fast; I am trying hard and improving much more slowly! I’ve gone from not earning any medals, to sometimes earning the lower ones. Skiing fast is difficult when you’re scared of going fast!
As I start each race, my heart beats so loudly I feel that others can hear it and I freeze with fear. Then, it’s time to go and I take off, trying to concentrate and correct some of my perennial errors. Ski racing (if I can call it that in my case) has helped me in other aspects of my life since it’s taught me that if you are going to get anywhere, you can’t hold back. You are either ALL IN or not. Life is richer when you take risks, grow, and see where things lead you. When you improve, you feel so proud of yourself! So the goal isn’t so much in the result; it’s in the process of learning to get better and be your best self.
Apart from improving our skiing, I like what the process of training for these ski races has taught my kids: that nothing in life comes easy, and that if you want to get good at something, you need to work very hard and not give up when things don’t go your way! As with any sport, we’ve had our fair shares of ups and downs: proud moments matched with tears of frustration! The tricky part is having five racing in the same race, which means better and worse times and happier and unhappier kids (and some jealous fights to boot!).
We reached a low point earlier this week when during a slalom training, Beckett (11) hit a slalom gate, hurled forward, and smashed his leg into the next gate, breaking his tibia bone. The ski patrol showed up within minutes and transported him via a toboggan over the snow, then into a helicopter.
After an x-ray at the local medical clinic, we got the verdict, a broken tibia. Beckett received a full leg cast and was told not to put weight on his leg for 45 days! I have heard varying accounts of how long it takes for a child’s bone to heal and the 45 days stuck me as a decent prognosis. Yet that timeline didn’t mitigate the difficulty of figuring out how to do all the things we took for granted before: get to the bathroom, change clothes, get up and down the stairs. Sleeping proved tricky since Beckett needed to elevate his leg, and the pain was a lot for him, poor little guy.
What to Do When Your Child Breaks a Bone
With Beckett in pain and feeling blue, we were doing everything we could to stay positive and try to show him how much fun he would have! We spoke of how many new series, movies and soccer games he could watch. Beckett began sending his friends photos of his broken leg and connecting with people. He played many of his favorite songs, and sunk into some books.
After a rough few days, the pain has subsided, we’ve made it though our first sponge bath and “shampoo in the sink”, and our spirits are higher.
To help your child heal a broken bone, follow the doctor’s orders to the T. We had this conundrum last year when my oldest Hedley (now 14) broke his arm and begged us to return early to basketball practice. He fought, cried and pleaded, but when the doctor explained that if he had a further injury, the recovery could be longer, we explained to him that the best course of action was to play it safe, allow the bone to heal and come back stronger than ever! Not easy things to understand when you are 13 years old.
Today, we’ve taken a day away from the slopes and have begun to make some plans to get Beckett out and about. We’re headed across the street to the pizza place for lunch and figuring out how to get Beckett a seat at the local movie theatre. Later on, I plan to talk to him about people who are disabled so that he thinks about what it feels like for these folks to navigate the world every day.
Although Beckett claims he will never ski again, I know that come mid-February Beckett he’ll be back with a more grateful, stronger spirit than ever. That’s the silver lining of a broken bone.
Wishing you health, happiness, and freedom from injuries for 2019 and make sure to enter our special double New Year’s giveaway for a $200 Amazon gift card. HAPPY NEW YEAR!!
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