How can a woman runs 3.5 miles, do 100 sit-ups, 20 minutes of free weights and then 45 minutes of stretching three time a week (in other words, be in fit condition), find herself flat on floor after an innocent effort to answer her smartphone that was not by her side when it rang? Yesterday, as I raced across the living room, the carpet angrily attacked my little red flats and I went flying into the bar stools in front of the snack bar between the kitchen and living room. What am I to do? This is the fourth time in the last six months where I have reached out or up, lost my balance and smashed onto the floor. Whether it’s socks slipping on the angled teak sole of our boat as I attempted to put my earrings in a bin, an unfamiliar closet in a hotel room jumping out at me as I reached into the safe for my laptop, a kitchen stool not quite level on the floor as I reached for that not often used spice, or the sole of a shoe catching on a carpet or the floor, the message is clear — I have strong bones and a hard head. No broken bones or concussions, just black & blue achy muscles, a lump on my brow, and one, just one, dislocated shoulder in the lot.
Now, you’d think that this is happening because of my aging body, but this is not the case. An investigation into my history reveals that my body just needs to get to the ground now and then and has done so for years. For example, three years ago I cut my brow with a fall while carrying laundry and tripped on lines while sailing that sent me down on all fours with a magnificent “thud”. Also, on a continuing but occasional basis, there’s the right ankle that just “gives out” when I’m walking and my running shoes that miss a beat on the sidewalk rain or shine, resulting in an embarrassing “splat” to the ground complete with bloody knees, scrapped palms and bruised ego. Six years ago, I slipped on some ice while trying to get off our first boat after cleaning off snow. I found myself parallel to the water, half on the boat and half on the dock holding onto a rope to keep me from splashing into the ice infested water. What a hilarious Youtube video that would have made. I could’ve “gone viral”.
Three years ago, I succumbed to shoulder surgery. Analysis leads me to believe that although I never have had vertigo or sea sickness (inner ear misalignment), I must have a disability I’ll call unmitigated balance deficiency; I can’t call myself a idiot who can’t stay upright. I refuse to wear a helmet and knee pads as fashion accessories. My only hope is that I learn to think before I dash and pause before I reach out over my center of gravity. Do you think I, a person with years of education and persistence to succeed, can do that? Wish me luck because I don’t think the two are related and, like I said, I have a hard head. Luckily, I have a great husband, an experienced EMT, who has a knack for applying first aid or getting me to the ER.
Just call me Ms. Mayhem!