Welcome! What's this human’s life like? Just like yours: too much to handle gracefully. Here you’ll find writing on the epic theme: What now? I post weekly-ish. Except when I don’t.



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Into Each Life A Little Stupid Must Fall

New Yorker 2011So I survived a week of the way people dress and drive in Florida, the flight there and back, just to trip on a shoe and fall the first day home. 

From the house into the garage, there is a step, off which I stepped onto a shoe I couldn’t see and fell— in slo-mo— to klaxtons wailing and a newscaster declaiming: She’s going dowwwwwn! My left ankle twisted, my torso pitched inexorably forward to land on hands in push-up position. Both elbows sproing! oing! oing!ed, I bounced up, then down, my right cheek brushed the concrete floor, and— Wham! Time sped up to the usual.

I lay there, amazed I hadn’t smashed my face. What a save!

Then I kicked myself— metaphorically, of course. I couldn’t move, the breath was knocked out of me.  What an idiot!   Why wasn’t I wearing my glasses? Why hadn’t I turned on the light? What was I thinking, stepping down like that into the dark, knowing Hubby’s and Son’s habit of shedding shoes randomly in the line of traffic. Well, I wasn’t thinking. Obviously.

Gingerly, I tested body parts. Left ankle: wrenched. But if positioned just so, it bore my weight. Good. Right wrist: jammed. But I had full range of motion and all the fingers worked. Good. I looked for the offending shoe. Mine! I couldn’t even blame Hubby. What a screw.

The ankle worried me. I hobbled to the kitchen and prepared dinner. The right hand—my dominant hand— wouldn’t hold the chef’s knife. I used the left.

Finally, duty done, I filled two zip lock baggies with ice and laid down, layering them over left ankle and right wrist. The cold was killing, but I endured it for fifteen minutes. The ankle came around nicely. The right hand remained swollen, and hurt. Eating dinner, I had trouble holding the fork. I joked, “Maybe I won’t be able to go to work.”

Meanwhile, Son complained of a sickie stomach. Hubby joshed him, “You and Mom! Don’t want to go to school tomorrow, eh?”

Son spent half the night puking and pooping. By morning, he was fully recovered and went to class. I, on the other hand (ha) couldn’t hold a pen. How was I going to write prescriptions and progress notes? 

I cancelled patients, and went for x-rays. My doc called, “Well, you win the prize!”

“Oh good!” I said, feeling like a hypochondriac. “It’s not broken!”

“No, it’s broken. See the orthopod tomorrow.”

Should I scold myself to pay more attention in future? Why? It would be stupid to expect a perfect score. In thirty-plus years of living with Hubby and his shoes, this is only the second time I’ve slipped on one. So it was my shoe. So it was my thirtieth anniversary. (Thank you.) The irony does not escape me. Just God having a little fun. Giving me a little gag gift. Reminding me that to stupid is human, to forgive divine. 

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Reader Comments (4)

D, Sorry about your hand! We must believe that good fortune will be as exact and as unavoidable.

March 20, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLorraine Robain

The no-no second: the moment that occurs between the initiation of a completely stupid event and its immediate conclusion, when you are fully aware that you are powerless to stop the progression of said event. It often happens as the lid of your car's trunk snaps shut with your
keys inside, and the car is locked. Or, it can happen as you step off......

March 21, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNaomi

mac and cheese of Fri. all's right with the world!!!!
PS. Sorry about the wrist

March 21, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDiane

AH, we have been here! Well written. That crazy moment when there is no turning back. Sorry to hear your hurt yourself. Least you can laugh about it. Thinking of you!

March 25, 2012 | Unregistered Commentereverythingsshiny

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