i’m terrified of spraining my ankle.

I’m terrified of spraining my ankle. Unlike most of my fears, I don’t think this is an irrational fear. I also have considered it very seriously and weighed it against my mental chart of “is this or is this not an irrational fear,” AND IT ISN’T. ACCORDING TO BRAIN SCIENCE. OKAY?

Just looking for some commiseration here, folks.

My ankles, safe in the embrace of velvet chucks.

Every day at JaneDO when we do something that involves jumping around, I’m terrified of spraining my ankle. It seems like I could land totally wrong at any moment and I’m constantly in danger.

I talk to myself in my head, “Don’t fall don’t fall don’t fall,” “Stay focused!” “OMG do NOT slam your foot down like that your ankle is going to BREAK!” “I don’t know how anyone can do this and not sprain their ankle.” “Screw it I’m going to modify.”

Since I’m terrified of spraining my ankle, there are things I avoid. One of those things is step class. Which at first glance looks super fun! And it is for many. But it TERRIFIES ME. Because I’m terrified of spraining my ankle.

This big, hulking, just tall enough to trip you piece of exercise equipment threatened to injure me every time I went so I gave it up for now. Also it was way too much talking in my head to keep from tripping. I want my mind to be blank while exercising. That’s 90% of why I even go, you guys.

Sometimes at JaneDO they throw some one leg off the trampoline stuff in trampoline class and still I’m terrified of spraining my ankle. I just do the same thing but don’t even try to touch the floor. Or place any weight on a single foot as it plunges toward the floor. It would only end in heartache.

I also really, REALLY hate cardio but that’s another story. There is cardio that is safe for my ankles. I think.

The terror comes from the one time in 2006 that I DID sprain my ankle and IT STILL DOES NOT WORK PROPERLY. “Well, did you skip out on physical therapy? You obviously did,” you might say. And I’d be like, “No way bitch, I physical therapied the HECK out of this thing!” Because I did. And it’s still not fully operational. 14 years later I can’t balance on my left leg properly and it pisses me the hell off.

If I sprain my ankle NOW, I won’t be able to do shit for SO LONG. And that really frightens me. Like I wouldnt be able to go to the gym AT ALL for at least a week. Then maybe barre or toning classes would be okay but I’d have to go slow. Then weeks and weeks later I could go less slow. By the time I would be able to do real cardio again I would be SO OUT OF BREATH AND UNHAPPY.

This is my worst nightmare.

I won’t even GET INTO the miserable life I would be living if I had to wear an aircast and use crutches on the PATH train or walking down the street. I would be overcome with rage. This is not an option.

So I’m terrified of spraining my ankle. Or really getting any kind of injury but this one seems the most likely to happen every single day.

Are you scared? It’s okay, you can tell me. How do you deal with the fear? How do you not sprain your ankle? Is talking to yourself in your head the only way to keep it from happening? I really don’t know. I’m asking you.

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