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Another ACL Tear…? Hopefully not.

March 18, 2013

I think I tore my ACL again.


Since doing so four years ago while playing a game of pick-up basketball, I have never been the same. I have been afraid of running, jumping, and most activities that require movement of the lower extremities.


Though I still continued to play pick up basketball games after I was healed, I avoided all contact. I became the guy who stood out at the three point line and waited  for someone to pass me the ball so I could fire away, because that’s all I felt I had left. Any time I would dribble into the paint, I would panic. So, I stayed out at the three point line where it was safe, and though it’s improved a bit over time, this is still the case.


When my roommate and I are feeling restless, we often go toss the football around in the parking lot down the street from our place, and even then, I am weary with every step; always waiting to slip or trip and bend my joint the wrong way and go down in pain. Last time I played basketball at my church, a Thursday night pick-up league, it was the best I had felt playing for a long time, and I started driving to the basket and playing with aggression. Then, I landed wrong off a lay-up and tweaked my knee and again, I’m afraid to even step foot on a basketball court.


I spent the last six months working on a novel, most of which for twenty or more hours a week, until I wrote myself into a dark place. Since the first draft was finished at the end of the six months, I’m afraid my metaphorical ACL has been torn, and now I’m scared to start writing fiction again because I’m afraid the ligaments are still torn and are a long way from healing. I’m afraid I’ll step back into it too soon like I did the first several times I hurt my knee, and go down in pain until I’m never the same again.


When I write, I don’t want to stand out at the three point line waiting for someone else to pass me the ball so I can fire away. I want to be driving to the hole, getting to the free throw line, distributing to my teammates, and of course hitting the occasional three; because a writer must be fearless and versatile.


Maybe I’m just weary, and maybe it was just a strain and nothing serious, but I can’t help but think otherwise. As soon as I open my laptop or my notebook, my feet refuse to leave the ground. All I have left is free throws.


The worst part of this is, I’m only twenty-three years old. If I am to be a novelist, I’m only at the very beginning of my career, and I don’t want my writing career to be cut short before I even get published due to injury like with my basketball career.


But right now, I can’t drive to the hole, or jump without fear. So, I guess I’ll sit and wait and focus on other things for the time being. And thank God I have other things to focus on.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. March 20, 2013 9:41 am

    “When I write, I don’t want to stand out at the three point line waiting for someone else to pass me the ball so I can fire away.”
    Great line. You’ll heal. It will pass. Just takes time

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