I fell last week. It’s not the first time I’ve stumbled over a crack in the sidewalk, but this time, I landed in the hospital with a broken wrist. My right wrist. Surgery and everything. The first few days home, I was suffused with anxiety. Fortunately, I’m not in any real pain, and have foregone the Percocet the doctor prescribed because a) I don’t need it, and b) being anxious and a drug addict? Terrifying. As I get older I seem to have lost the grasp of the idea of impermanence. I get a stomach bug, Vertigo, or break my #%^*ing wrist, and I can’t see the end. Or rather, I see the end. Decrepitude and Death. I’ve spent the last couple of days watching old Friends re-runs, muttering to myself, “She doesn’t have a broken wrist, He doesn’t have a broken wrist. Look at that beautiful ponytail! She doesn’t have a broken wrist.” I’m starting to hurt myself with my fingernails, I look like Medusa, and I spent 10 minutes this morning trying to open the bag inside a box of Raisin Bran, something I suck at with two hands. I’ve taken deep breaths, meditated, had quiet, non-judgemental conversations with my bat-crap crazy self. I bought ugly Banana clips so I could make a one-handed ponytail, even one stuck in the 90’s. Spoiler alert. Can’t. But throughout this whole thing, two things have become clear. Neither of them surprising, but lost in the hubbub of life. One of the things my surgeon told me was that the bones in my wrist were weak. WTF??!!! The only scenario that conjures up is increasing falls, walking with a walker, decrepitude and death. No. No. Hell, No. I’m gonna have to take better care of these bones. I am going to get older, but what makes me believe if I ignore it and do nothing, it will go away? Spoiler alert. Won’t. I immediately ran out and bought calcium gummies, Vitamin D3 gummies, and Vitamin C, um, gummies. Ok, don’t judge me. I did calf raises, and light weights with my left hand and I swore when this was all over, I would go back to the gym I pay for and can see from my house. The second thing that I was reminded of was the immense love my husband has for me. He slept in a chair in my hospital room the night after my surgery. He has cooked, shopped, opened bottles, put on my bra, clipped my fingernails, put my hair in a ponytail. And still thinks I’m beautiful. There is really only one person who will keep me strong and change the future. That’s me. But there will be someone supporting me, encouraging me and loving me while I get strong, and catching me when I fall. Two halves of an orange that together make one lumpy, bumpy, perfectly imperfect orange.
The Other Half of the Orange