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Embodied Knowing

I am, hopefully, nearing the end of a long learning journey. On 1 September 2015, I slipped in the wet outside and broke my left ankle – 2 bones, 1 chipped bone, 1 dislocated foot. I was on my own at home. I find it interesting that, in the midst of this traumatic and painful experience, my first thoughts were about how to get myself and the washing basket I was carrying inside out of the rain, and, having solved that, ‘First Aid: RICE’ (RICE is a First Aid acronym for Rest, Ice, Compression. Elevation). So, I got myself and the washing basket inside and then proceeded to limp through the house finding cold packs and compression bandage to use while I raised and rested my ankle. Then I considered how best to get transport to a fracture clinic. Incidentally, in the midst of crawling around the kitchen, I accidentally tapped my toes on the floor and felt my foot shift back into place. So, by the time my husband got me to the clinic and into a wheel chair with my foot flexed, I had no pain at all and the ankle and bones were perfectly in place for having a cast put on by the doctor.  My decades of learning about the body, my body in particular, were there for me, even in an emergency (together with my First Aid training, of course). That’s embodied knowing. I continue to have treatment with physiotherapists and cranio-sacral osteopath, as well as working out in a hydrotherapy pool. But, as a dancer, I have been gentle with my swollen, stiff, painful ankle, all the while, pushing it a little at a time to gradually re-learn and regain all the skills, strength and flexibility I know I need. I still have some way to go before I can walk without a limp and dance as I was doing before this injury, but I am still noticing day by day improvements. That’s embodied knowing.

Cast photo 1

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