I see the crack in the sidewalk, but I’m going too fast to avoid it. Four weeks post-surgery and this cross between a tricycle and a scooter is my primary means of transportation. And it’s about to be my downfall. Literally.
You know how the movies slow stuff down for dramatic effect? There’s a reason they do that. It’s because when it happens in real life, it being you and your tri-scooter going topsy turvy in your office parking lot, it really does happen in slow motion.
I feel myself pitching forward, and I sense the very moment when momentum has taken me too far forward to reverse what’s about to happen next. I do have the presence of mind to avoid landing on the foot that’s gotten me into this mess in the first place. And I land squarely on my left knee and the palms of my hands.
As I’m going down, I hear a wailing. But it’s not me. It’s my mom, and she’s calling on the Lord Jesus Christ. I’m not sure if she’s calling on him to save me or her, but either way, he let us both down because as I’m gathering myself together on the filthy parking lot ground, my mom is bawling and shaking her fists at the sky, all the while yelling, “Not on my watch! This shouldn’t happen on my watch!” Now it’s hilarious, but at the time, the pain in her voice drowns out the throbbing of my knee and palms and pushes me to move double time over to her to comfort her.
You see, in the flight or fight dichotomy, my mom is neither. She’s the other “F” – Frozen. My mom is so distraught at the prospect of me falling that she has planned her response before it actually happened. A quickly placed hand might have set me straight, but alas, my mom was already planning our defeat.
We’re all good now. My knee was swollen for a couple of days, my palms bruised. And we can all laugh about the fall now. Particularly this bit. My mom, on the phone that night, tears and pain forgotten, said, “My biggest regret is that I didn’t get to her sooner.” But here’s the thing. My mom technically never got to me at all. She was frozen, in place, the entire time. I walked – or rolled rather – over to her.
Grace W. is a writer, blogger, part-time chef (nope), and full-time geek. She’s working on her first novel. The Writer’s Station is where she shares the trials and tribulations of being a wanna-be author.