Published: January 2008
Related Topics: People
It seems like only yesterday (well, perhaps it is only yesterday) that I was regaling the Niagara Anglican's readers with the tale of my accidental summer excursion over a waterfall, from which I emerged with only a few bumps and bruises. However, as I write this article, I am lying in the hospital bed which has temporarily become the focal point in my living room. It has happened again. I have had another fall.
This time, I fell down the "up" escalator at Lester B. Pearson International Airport. I now sport staples in my head, a large brace on my left leg, bruises and "escalator" scrapes on my back, shoulder and right knee. This is not a look that is particularly flattering. And I feel rather silly that I have had another accident in relatively short order.
This is an interesting phenomenon, really. I don't think of myself as being particularly accident prone. My driving record, after all, is virtually spotless, given over three decades of driving. I have never seriously burnt myself, or cut myself in any way that has required stitches. Over the years, I have only broken one bone, my collar bone, in a fall down the stairs. So, having one tumble after another seems at first glance to be rather coincidental. At least that was what I thought until a friend pointed out that I have had in fact, four falls in the past two years, with three of them in the past year.
Many of the stories of these falls can be presented humourously, like the icy winter day when I presented myself with severe and immediate bruising at the local walk-in clinic. There, the assumption was that I had fallen on treacherous ice. In fact, I had lost my balance while rushing to put my slacks on in my bedroom on my way to work. Another fall was connected to a birthday celebration with some of my wild woman friends one Sunday after the Archdeacon had paid a visit--except that I fell on my way into the restaurant. As I entered the establishment, my glasses askew with blood streaming down my face, one of my friends deadpanned: "Gee, looks like it was a tough visit with the Archdeacon!"
This fall, however has my attention. Coping with crutches, reaching assists and other temporary accoutrements, I recognize that I need to attend to whatever I need to learn from these frequent falls.
There are some issues that need to be ruled out, such as physical causes. There are, however some spiritual issues that must be attended to for health and well-being. I share them with you, because perhaps you might see your own life reflected in mine.
The common denominator that I can see in all of my recent falls is that I tend to be constantly in a rush. Juggling a calling with many dimensions, meetings within the Diocesan Resource Centre and away from it, multi-tasking between Fresh Start, Interim work and Safe Church issues means that for me, on an average day, I feel like my standard care, constantly gearing up and gearing down. There is email to attend to, projects to execute. I love my work and feel a deep sense of calling, but it is busy. There is also my personal life--my family at home (a husband and a teenager), two cats, a puppy, and my wider family including my Mother and Aunt seniors in a retirement home, but for whom I have sole responsibility. There are the daily tasks familiar to us all: errands, such as buying gas, groceries, and seeing to medical and dental appointments for all and sundry. As I reflect on the total package of my life, I am aware that too often; I careen around the corners of my day in high gear, and too often lose my "center" or my "grounding". It is a direct result of my lurching lifestyle, I think, that I stumble and fall....
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