In Other Words — Invisible Injury

FD5300A3-5A76-4B67-97A2-47D721BDA967If you’ve ever suffered from a broken rib, then you’ll understand why I call it the invisible injury.

For at least a month after breaking a rib, simple, natural, everyday acts — coughing, sneezing, laughing, blowing your nose, or even pushing out a stubborn poop — can lead to excruciating pain.

You pray that no one comes up to you to give you a hug, to slap you on your back, or even to vigorously shake your hand.

And since you’re not wearing a cast, no one knows that you’ve got a broken rib.

At least when you have a broken arm or a broken leg, others can see that you’ve broken something, so, unlike with a broken rib, your injury is not invisible.

Written for the In Other Words prompt from Patricia’s Place. The challenge this week is to write a story or poem of five lines or fewer using the word “invisible.”

7 thoughts on “In Other Words — Invisible Injury

  1. Willow February 28, 2019 / 7:51 am

    Tearing a shoulder is very similar. Everything hurts and there’s no outward sign of an injury, with the added benefit of not being able to move one’s arm. Yay! Also — it’s not a broken rib, but costochondritis isn’t any fun either. ^_^

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango February 28, 2019 / 8:52 am

      Live suffered from a frozen rotator cuff that required about 12 weeks of physical therapy. I’ve never hear of costochondritis before.


      • Willow February 28, 2019 / 9:59 am

        Costochondritis is the inflammation of the connective tissue of the rib cage. It’s a symptom of fibrmyalgia sometimes. It hurts like hell. First few times it happened to me, I thought I was having a heart attack or sumthin’. Now I just get random chest pains it’s all, “not this again.” grrr.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Melanie B Cee February 28, 2019 / 10:01 am

    And then there are things like fibromyalgia, nerve neuropathy (hurts like seven types of hell), and a bunch of other ‘invisible’ illnesses. I hope you heal soon (or did, if this is a retrospective). I have an elderly neighbor (she turned 88 this year and has so much gusto, she makes me tired) anyway…she bruised one of her ribs and her description of the pain echos yours. Eeek. Maybe I’ll get some kind of brace or something, because I’m not sure I could deal with that level of pain. Wow!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ennle Madresan February 28, 2019 / 8:00 pm

    Nodding my head with empathy.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Undine March 31, 2019 / 5:55 pm

    Yep. Been, there done that, not with a broken rib but with three hip surgeries.
    People “see” you are on crutches and yet ask “are you sure you have something? You “look” okay.” I also always thought it was invisible, so I can relate.


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