It's been a little while!
Since I last posted, I rescheduled my flight, canceled it altogether, and booked it again. I am considering rescheduling it.
My Camino this far has truly been a test of my patience, emotional and physical strength.
Long story ahead, and warning: the timeline may be screwy because I barely know what day it is.
Saturday, the first day I started, I wrenched my knee pretty solidly. I took a break, hoping it was just a small thing. It swelled and hurt.
After hours of internal reflection, I made the very difficult decision to go home. Changes in flight booking cost me $1700. I booked a hotel close to the airport because my flight left at 8:30 Monday morning.
As I was packing up everything, I was listening to music and thinking. And I realized I HAD persevered. All that training I did. All the money. Everything. It was all perseverance.
And there was no way I was going to throw that away. So I swore to myself I would see the Cathedral in Santiago. I was determined. I booked an uber to the local Decathlon (Portugal's answer to REI) and bought walking poles, new sunglasses (mine broke), electrolytes and a few other things. Then I took an uber to the hotel. I'd already booked and paid, so I wasn't going to waste a night of rest.
I got into my room and did everything that needed to be done; unpack, shower and laundry. Then I hobbled around looking for somewhere to eat. I got 3 km in and my knee swelled again. I went back to the hotel.
I took some ibuprofen and slathered my knee in arnica. I called the front desk for ice (ice isn't really a thing here!! There's no ice!!!) I set up pillows, elevated my knee and cried. I was heartbroken. So much internal strife. How was this happening?! How?!? I didn't want to go home. I couldn't. I'd done too much to get here. And I'd already canceled my flight. I was an ocean away from everything I knew. I had no return trip planned or booked. And yet... My knee says no, thank you.
So I talked to several friends. I searched my soul, I meditated, I tried to sleep.
And I knew I had to go home. So the flight was re-booked and I was scheduled. I wished with every fiber of my being that I would wake up tomorrow and all would be well, but my spirit was shattered and I knew better. This is soft tissue damage, which can take weeks to heal, and I don't have that time. I was leaving Tuesday.
2:30 AM Monday morning, I finally fell asleep. My heart was heavy for a number of reasons and it was a toss-and-turn, can't-hit-REM sleep, not restful at all.
Still, my reservations came with breakfast. So I knew I had to be up early. I rested as best I could.
This morning. Monday. I think. My flight is scheduled for tomorrow...but the swelling in my knee has gone down SIGNIFICANTLY. It still hurts, don't get me wrong. But I was able to make my plate at breakfast and move around with less difficulty than yesterday.
I have a tiny spark of hope left.
I finished breakfast and came back to my room to reassess the situation. Trip insurance would cover my flight if I have to come home for medical reasons. This means I will get the $1700 back, which I would then use to book another trip to Portugal in Spring of next year, after I healed. I just had to rest and continue training until then.
But I've come too far. I want to keep going. Part of this journey is about pushing myself. I don't want to cause any more damage to my knee, but if a couple more day's rest will get me back on track then I will do it.
There is A LOT that happened between all this, but that's the gist of it.
Current situation: Flight home is booked for tomorrow at 8:20 AM. My knee feels significatly better this morning, but definitely not 100%.
So right now, I have three goals: get to a doctor for an actual diagnosis (not just a poke and prod), decide whether or not to push on from there, and look at the details of my trip insurance. I can further test my knee by walking to the doctor, which is about a mile away. A very short walk. If it swells during that, pretty sure I'm going home. If it doesn't, I get a dx and decide once again from there whether to cancel my trip home and keep going.
So that's where I'm at right now. I didn't have the strength to write during all of this, so this is a short version and doesn't come CLOSE to the maelstrom of emotions I've whirled through in the past 24 hours.Read more
It's been a little while!