TBG and I are attending the Pilates Diva's this afternoon. It's been a little over two years since we held ours. I've been antsy all day.
It's odd, since there aren't any similarities, on the surface, at least. True, we were both victims of young-ish, white, men, but unless you are one of those who is recasting the George Zimmerman affair, I don't think that's relevant. Mental illness and irresponsible gun solutions are behind my injuries; The Pilates Diva's guy nodded off behind the wheel.
I find her story to be much more likely to alter my way of life than I've found my own to be. She was behind her husband on their tandem bike when the SUV proved, once again, that two objects cannot occupy the same space at the same time. TBG hasn't gotten back on his own road bike since he was forced into an uncovered drainage hole and turned his face into hamburger. I'm not sure I'd get back on a bike again after viewing my accident from the roadway itself, pinned under a bike I couldn't move, while watching cars fly by. I can't stop going to the grocery store, or hanging out with my little friends, or being politically involved. I could, I think, stop cycling.
Then, again, maybe not. Certainly not if I followed our hostess's example. She ate organic, unprocessed, natural, pure foods. She followed her exercise regimen devotedly. She didn't dwell in the negative spaces, although she didn't ignore them, either. Her husband was injured, too, as was their cycling partner. The bike was damaged beyond repair. She could hardly wait to get back in the saddle.
She slipped in a hip replacement between the accident and this photo.
One year ago she was broken.
Not so much any more, as you can see.
And so I began to think about all the people who pitched in to make recovery just a little less awful. I brought her Arnica cream and Mederma and my walker and the bedside commode.... which is making the rounds of my family and friends at an alarming rate these days. As I carried the satchel into her house, I felt like the next link in the chain to which I became connected in January, 2011. Strangers fed me, smiled at me, held doors and my hand and my heart, just for a moment, but as necessary to my recovery as were the squats and the leg lifts and the push-ups.
As I laid my treasures on her counter-top, Marvin stepped in... to say Hi... to see how her husband was doing. Though I'd bowed out of cooking dinners - a wise choice for all concerned - that evening's meal was on its way shortly, their daughter reassured me. "There are so many people who want to help."
Tonight we'll be drinking margaritas and admiring her roses and toasting her good health... and I'll slip in a quiet thank you for my own. We'll celebrate good friends and helpful neighbors and we will be grateful... very, very grateful. Because we both know, no matter how much it aches, no matter how much we wish things were just as they used to be, no matter at all.... the sun came up this morning and we were here to see it. By definition, it's a good day.
L'Chaim! To Life!