I've been injured for belt tests before. I took my brown or brown II test with a broken hand that was the result of some overzealous board breaking. I refused to go get it checked out, thinking that if I did, the doctor would probably tell me something I didn't want to hear. So I dealt with it (I have another hand), and went to the doctor after I made it through the test. Seems reasonable, right? Don't answer that.
This time, it's my right knee. My right ankle and instep were already giving me weird issues, but this is a different beast. In krav maga, a melee turned a bit squirrelly, and one of my (large, male) training partners fell in an odd way and landed on my leg as I tried to get out of the way. My knee bent sideways, and I heard a kind of creaky noise. Not a loud pop like the ACL horror stories I've heard, but more of a stretching sound. I think I went with the fall enough to preserve myself from a major, sidelines sort of injury, and I was able to finish the class on adrenaline. The next morning, though, I couldn't walk, and I called in to work to let them know I was working from home.
Total panic set in. What did I do? What can I do? Get the ice on it, get the ibuprofen, get it elevated. It's March! The test is in May! Pre-qual is in a couple of weeks! This cannot be happening!
I kept it iced and elevated all that first day, then I decided to try to go to work the next day. It wasn't a great decision. When I finally made it to my office on the East side of Manhattan, after fighting off the hordes of commuters trying their darndest to shove me up the stairs, my boss and coworkers immediately told me to stay home the next day. Kind of funny if it wasn't happening to me.
Again, I steadfastly refused to go to the doctor. I just knew I would be told to stop all training, and frankly, it's not an option. I have another leg. I have two arms. I can do things, I just can't do everything with that leg. I ordered multiple knee braces and wraps on Amazon Prime that first day home so they would arrive as soon as possible. I found a set that I liked, and realized that as long as I didn't pivot on my knee, I could stand on it and bend it to a degree without pain. I'm limping, but I'm walking. I can't extend a kick, but I can raise my knee. It's not so much that I can't handle the pain, I just don't want to cause additional damage that would put me on the sidelines.
All in all, it's just Murphy's Law. If it can go wrong, it will go wrong. One of these days, I was bound to get injured, and it just happened at the wrong time. But either I can accept that, and drop out of the test, or I can accept that and push through to the best of my ability. So here we go -- I'm deciding to push through. Let's see what happens from here.