Dog training is dangerous work

So my dog is becoming incredibly skilled at indoor parkour. If you don’t know what that is, Google it. I’ll wait.

Insane, right?

Well, Nia is a master. When she gets the zoomies, she jets around our house, side-swiping and jumping on everything with a flat surface.

 She can also clear 4-5 feet with a standing jump. Hopping on our couch, over the back? Child’s play. Jumping a gate to get to the top of our stairs? Piece of cake. Bouncing from one ottoman to the other like fucking Tigger? Done.

Clearly, all of these feats of strength means she’s an agility star in the making.

So the other night, after some serious playtime and even more serious zoomies, I decided that instead of trying to train the crazy out of her, I would help hone her skills.

dog with a toy in the middle of a living room

I’m a fool.

So I pulled out the small ottoman and started running to jump over it in the hopes that Nia would follow suit and chase me. She did, but she ran beside the ottoman instead of over it. Several times.

So I figured I’d try again.

I figured wrong.

As my right leg cleared the ottoman, my left foot caught on the back, making my landing less than a 10. I didn’t fall (for, like, the first time ever), but I did manage to feel a pop-pop-pop of bad. And also a searing pain in my left Flinstoe (Flinstone toe. It’s a thing) that turned out to be a broken nail.

I knew immediately something had gone awry and I stumbled to the couch, much to Brian’s confusion. He has never seen me actually injure myself, despite seven-plus years of experience with my injuries. I took a few ibuprofen, iced my knee, and made a bunch of Instagram stories about my foolishness, hoping there would be no pain when I finally peeled myself off the couch.

Much to my dismay (and with little surprise, if we’re being honest), I discovered that yes, Virginia, Chrissy hurt herself again. After 30+ years of injuring myself, I knew how to recognize the signs of a sprain:

  • Can move the joint in question
  • Difficulty with range of motion (which is strange for me because I have overextending joints, so my range of motion is a little crazy already)
  • Slight swelling (I don’t often swell)
  • Slight bruising (sprains don’t bruise much for me, even though I get rando bruises all the time)
  • Pain in certain positions (or many positions or when putting pressure on said joint)

And so I went to sleep with plans to visit the doctor the next day. I’m pretty confident they love me over there. This was the first time my doc saw my hair, and she was all open-mouth WOAH, but not actually surprised, since she’s been seeing me for years (basically since I got a job with health insurance). After I told her about trying to train my dog to jump over an ottoman by showing instead of telling (I mean, COME ON. How do you tell a dog to jump over an ottoman?), she laughed and told me, “At least you have a good story.”

“Doc, that’s pretty much my life. You should hear about the last time I sprained my knee…”

She laughed, and I made a few more jokes before she told me to chill out, rest my shit, and try not to reinjure myself like a fool (which is of course going to be tricky with several hours of improv classes and a show tonight (SHAMELESS PLUG: GO SEE MY ENSEMBLE, HAMMOCK FIRE, at the Chicago Second City Training Center Thursday nights through September 20!)

And so, I’m back on the injury train. Which is kind of funny, since I had finally stopped telling people that injuring myself is a key theme in my storytelling style.

Such is life.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Monday Memories: Embarrassing Moments

I’ve decided to start making the Monday Memories topical, so that anyone who participates with me has some direction for their posts. The goal, remember, is to make people laugh. So let’s err on the side of caution and leave out sad memories for these posts.

Embarrassing Moments

I’m certainly no stranger to embarrassing moments…I mean you’ve read about my bald spot…and the most embarrassing glamour shots ever…and then there was the incident with the strawberry…and my poop story…so when I tell you that I’ve got more, you really shouldn’t be surprised…

Now, I happen to have another poop story, but I’ll save that for another day. Hair mishaps? Thousands. But not today…And as far as fabulously embarrassing pictures go? Here’s one just for fun.

Embarrassing Photos

Note the dirty socks, the bad hair, the huge forehead, and the old school phone.

That being said, I’m going to tell you the tale of one of my many embarrassing moments…

That One Time (Of Many) That I Fell Down

So last summer, after a painstakingly long stint of unemployment, I was able to revisit a summer job I had teaching reading comprehension to students with learning disabilities, autism, and others who had difficulty with reading, spelling, and comprehension (a truly rewarding position…)

I was training in downtown Oak Park, which is a cute almost-city suburb just west of the city. I had previously taken the train down, but as I was no longer living near that line, it was easier for me to drive in. I had worn my brand new dress pants (which were SUPER cute AND comfortable, which is almost unheard of with fancy pants) and flats. Yes. Flat shoes. Because that’s what perpetual klutzes wear. Flats. So they don’t injure themselves.

Of course, I made it through my second first day with flying colors. It was a short day, so I thought I’d wander the downtown Oak Park area (Read: go to cute fancy cheese shop and buy cheese). I was heading back toward my car, struttin’ along, thinking that I was on top of the world, when all of a sudden, I was falling. And then I was on the ground. And people around me (and there were a lot of them) were staring. And staring. And asked if I was okay. And asked to help me up. And I just sat there. And sat there. And told them that I was fine. And I would be okay. I just needed a minute. Or a protective bubble. Or somewhere to hide.  One of those. Or all of those.

There was a searing pain in my knee, to go along with the throbbing pain in my ankle. I had rolled it. Into one of those sidewalk tree squares.

Sidewalk trees

Image borrowed from Streetsblog.org

I looked down at my knee…Not only was there a nasty cut covered in dirt and blood…I could SEE said nasty cut…through the hole in my brand new pants.

People walked by, stared at me, but moved on… After what seemed like hours, I finally got up. With a new batch of onlookers, I stumbled to my feet and tried to put pressure on the ankle. Nope. Bad idea. So I limped my way to my car slowly, while people watched me with bemused glances. Both the knee and the ankle were screaming at me for the pain I was inflicting on them. It looked like I had another high heel free summer ahead of me. (I know what you’re thinking. This girl has NO business wearing high heels. Ever. But I like cute shoes just as much as the next girl.)

What about you, Blog Friends? Any embarrassing moments you’d like to share?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

This is Why I Don’t Ski Anymore

When I was in 7th grade, my church had a ski trip for all of the junior high kids. So I packed up some of my best buddies, and Mom drove us to our first ski trip (about 20 minutes away on a little hill of a mountain.)

It was amazing. We had so much fun that we did it again the following year.

Of course, the year after that, I was in high school and too cool to do that sort of thing. Also, I was very busy being a cheerleader…and I may have just sprained my ankle for the first time…

So I happily went many years without so much as a thought about skiing. Several years and hundreds of injuries later, I was a sophomore in college. The boys were planning a ski trip over winter break, and I just HAD to go. Mark and Robert were two of my best buddies, and I wanted to play with the big boys.

My mom, of course, was against the whole thing. “You’ll hurt yourself!” Our insurance company had gone bankrupt or something, so we were in between medical insurance policies at the time and Mom knew my history with injuries. At that point, I had sprained both ankles numerous times. I was a walking disaster. They tell me I can’t chew gum and walk up the stairs at the same time…(I can’t chew gum at all anymore because of my TMJ disorder, but that’s beside the point.)

So, being the stubborn 19-year-old college student that I was… I went skiing.

I was happily skiing down the “bunny hill” and going at my own pace. The boys, though, were not pleased with my la-dee-da thought process. They both came packing with their own ski equipment, and wanted to try the “black mountains.” Of course, with their “younger sister” type in tow, they didn’t feel comfortable leaving me all the way on the other side of the resort.

So I agreed to step it up a notch.

I moved to one of the next harder hills, and I was doing just fine. There was a dip in the hill where it was flat, so I could slow down and pace myself. It worked out quite well. Until it didn’t.

Mark was ready to head towards the bar and I was considering taking a break/calling it quits, but I was sort of crushing on Robert at the time, and I thought…if he’s going down once more, I can too. So I told Mark I’d meet him at the bar and I thought Robert was right behind me.

I started going a little too fast…and the break, where I was supposed to slow down? I missed it. I went straight through it.

I started panicking. I lost control.

There was a guy in front of me, going way slower. I screeched, “Get out of the way!!!!”

I thought, and I panicked. The boys had said, “if you need to slow down, turn,” and, “If you feel like you are going to fall, let yourself fall.”

So I did both.

Everything happened so fast. I heard a crack. My left ski popped off. My right ski did not. But my right leg was positioned unusually awkward. My body was in pain. I was cold. I was screaming. I was crying. I couldn’t move my right leg.

The guy I passed turned out to be ski patrol. He came over quickly and called for backup. He took the ski from my right foot. He helped me get myself situated. When the ski patrol jet ski guy came, he helped me onto it.

I rode it up to the medical attention center, where they elevated my knee and iced it. “It was probably a sprain,” they told me. I was in shock. They asked for my friends’ names. I told them. All I could think, though, was she’s going to kill me. She’s going to kill me. She’s going to kill me.

When Mark and Robert arrived with their heads shaking, my thoughts were now verbalized, “She’s going to kill me. She’s going to kill me. She’s going to kill me.” I probably looked certifiable. I was rocking back and forth repeating the same thing over and over and over again.

And so, we had a strained ride home in a tiny little beater Audi from the 80’s with 2 dudes, 2 sets of skis, and a Chrissy with a bad knee. For like 4 hours. Then I had to drive my ass home the next day with my driving leg not so much working. I learned how to drive with cruise control and my left leg that day.

Mom was not pleased. And I was determined never to ski again. God did not intend me to fly down a mountain on a couple of sticks. But of course, that wasn’t the end of this saga.

To Be Continued….

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!