I Tripped, But I’ll Keep Ignoring The Pain


I tripped last weekend.

There was a little piece of brick sticking up from the hearth and, as I approached the front door, my foot caught it, and I went down like a sack of potatoes. (I would say “like a sack of bricks,” but that would be redundant.)

I suppose it was my own fault. I was looking off to my left and wondering if those doodads on the shelves could be arranged in a more pleasing fashion. That’s why I couldn’t pay attention to where I was going.

The next thing I remember is a concrete step zooming up to greet my face, because my husband, Mark, was politely holding the door open for me.

My face did not hit the step, thank goodness, and that is because, deep in the recesses of my brain, my subconscious remembered that my parents had paid for four years of braces for me and smashing my teeth into a slab of concrete would’ve made me appear ungrateful. So I swerved. Or flipped. Or something. I don’t know.

I only remember sudden pain — and Mark standing there in horror. So here’s what I told him:

“Drag me outside and close the door. You’re letting the air conditioning out.”

Ah, yes. Frugal to the last.

“Are you OK?!” he demanded (after closing the door).

“I feel like I’m going to throw up. I feel dizzy. I may be in shock. Can you prop me up against the wall there?”

So he propped.

But I slid off to the side and was soon lying on the porch. “My knees hurt. My fingers hurt. Maybe my feet should be higher than my head.”

So Mark maneuvered me around a little bit, and pretty soon I was able to sit up without listing. A brief inspection uncovered two bruised knees, two bruised arms, a black and blue toe, and a little finger that did not want to be bent backward ever again.

“We’ve got to go,” I said.

“To the doctor?”

“No, to the wedding,” I replied. “It’s five hours away, and we’re not quite sure where we’re going.”

“Don’t you think you should see a doctor?”

“Maybe next week. When we get back.”

So we went to the wedding (arriving with four minutes to spare) and Mark, because he is so good, did not mention my near death experience. He merely kept bringing me ice wrapped in napkins to keep my pinkie from swelling up. And he guarded my left foot, where the miserable toe, had anyone stepped on it, would’ve let the cat out of the bag — a screaming, shrieking cat that may have detracted from the sweetness of the day.

I still haven’t been to the doctor, but today might be the day. The bruising has gone away but the finger looks a little crooked now that the swelling has gone down. And it refuses be used — not for the brushing of teeth, the combing of hair or even the typing of columns.

The teeth and hair can wait, but I must be able to type.

It’s the only mental therapy I have.