When you write a newspaper column and occasional blog for almost 16 years, sometimes you struggle for fodder. Kids, do not try this at home, but my experience this past weekend put Einstein’s Theory of Relativity to the test (well, some law of physics).
Have you ever experienced something (usually traumatic) that made time slow way, way down — so much so that you could actually watch things happen, not like the usual blur our lives run in?
And remember how your mother told you to always go out in clean underwear, for you never knew what might happen? And you have friends around you who are getting sick and injured and you think your awareness is heightened and all that good stuff? Don’t count on it.
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What I will say at this point is, I proved to myself yet again how valuable meditation, self-hypnosis, self-evaluation, breathing and all that other woo-woo stuff is. That and believing … allowing … other forces to interact on your behalf. I think all my ninja training came in handy the other day. And being limber.
So, many are wondering — I was trying to get up on a float while it was stopped, realized (with my foot up at about shoulder height — like I said, limber) it was not a good spot to pull myself up and decided to move. Unfortunately, so did the vehicle, pulling the very large trailer with my friends and all upon it. Upfront: MY bonehead move.
As I watched my foot go under the tires, it occurred to me this was not a good thing. As my leg slowly (like I said, time practically stopped) followed my foot, I went into flow mode and threw my opposite leg over the other so it only ran over the length of one leg. You know, kind of like making clay snakes as a child? Yeah, that.
Folks, here is where the importance of being-in-the-moment and all that jazz comes into play. You become acutely in touch with your body. Not just that something hurts like a bunch of bad words, but too fully and completely be able to assess calmly. Panic gets you nowhere but more bad words. When you are calm enough to examine a situation more broadly, fear is less likely to take over.
Let me be clear, while I was in the moment there was much jostling about in my brain for focus: how bad I was making everyone around me feel, how long would I be off work, there are better ways of getting attention ha ha ha, and here goes my body into conserve mode. Slow down. One issue at a time. Ahhhhh. …
With a high concentration of my tribe right there while this was happening, I felt even worse. Man, I hate putting people out. Who hops out of the ambulance but a young man I’ve known most of his life, Jacob Bittner. “Oh, I just wanted to see you!” And then Steve Bitto with the firetruck, whom I’ve known a good 30 years. “Oh, all my friends. …” I was trying to make light — helps me cope. Everyone was incredibly sweet and kind and helpful — made me feel even guiltier.
So, off to the ER, where they X-rayed my leg. “Nothing broken! What happened again?” asked the doctor.
There would be soft tissue damage, but I am allowed to put weight on it as I feel able. Not very able at the moment. Getting better by the day. Sitting around, reflecting on the error of my ways, I came to several conclusions:
- Cambria is incredibly lucky to have such quick, capable and kind emergency services.
- Cambrians are not afraid to get involved when needed.
- Cambrians are more than generous in everything they give — time, money, love.
- While it’s not necessary to temper exuberance, just redirect it when around potentially moving vehicles.
- Keep meditating and doing self-hypnosis (I declined all pain meds).
- Get in better shape to ensure continued quick recovery from any unforeseen event.
- Continue practicing gratitude, and don’t be afraid to ask someone for help — that’s the hardest one for me.
So, there is my Pinedorado 2015 story. I enjoyed the waffle breakfast at the Joslyn Center, walking down Main Street seeing all my friends of so many years and the beginning of the parade (was SO glad to see baby Phoenix on the fire engine — there’s a real little trooper, as are his parents!) and just feeling the fun and hometown feeling exploding all around that morning.
As I told the ER doctor, if I’d accepted all the cocktails offered while walking down the street that morning, I’d have known better than to have gone near the float. I was excited. Lesson: drink up and stay on the doggone curb.
Borrowing from comedian Ron White’s skit: “They call me … Speedbump!”