It Could Have Been So Much Worse

I’m pretending to be Sophia Petrillo from “The Golden Girls,” for a second. Picture it; it’s New Year’s Eve 2010. I go outside to knock some icicles off the gutters (something I’ve done hundreds, no thousands of times without a problem) and fall, SPLAT on some black ice.

Yeah ouch, but that’s not the worst part. I couldn’t get up because the ice was extremely slippery underneath me so I had to crawl into my house on all fours. The only thing that was good about any of this, is that I fell behind a row of bushes so there was no way any of my neighbors could have made a video of me and put it on YouTube.

I’ve been limping around ever since, but I’m fine. There was no real damage done, so I can’t complain. I mean seriously, I can’t. Why you may ask? Because I was this close to almost bashing my head on a slate-stone corner, but for some reason I missed it.

So yeah, I can’t complain about that, just like I can’t complain about anything that’s happened over the course of the last year, because I know it could have been so much worse. Outside of losing my father, which has been tough and the struggles of helping mom through her cancer treatments, I can’t really say that I currently feel I have that much to complain about at all. We’ve gotten through it and last year is now happily behind us.

Of course, when we were in the middle of everything, I did have plenty to complain about. Getting to here from there wasn’t easy. Getting to here from there when I fell wasn’t easy either, because trust me, when I had to crawl along on that black ice, I wasn’t thankful for anything. I was cold, shivering and in pain, and getting back inside and on my feet was all that I had one my mind. Of course, now that some time has passed and the pain is subsiding, I can put things into perspective.

I can put things in perspective about cancer now too, though in truth, not with as much assurance as with my recent little tumble.

When mom and I were in the middle of everything, there were times when things were dire. The whole world seemed covered with shadows and thinking about the future gave me rushes of white-hot or ice cold anxiety that made me feel like I was going over the edge. Thankfully, I didn’t go over the edge. Though there were times when I was certain I was on my way, but somehow, it didn’t happen and I found or God gave me, the strength to go on.

I hope this doesn’t sound like it was an easy thing, because it wasn’t. Hell is a good word for it. Those of you going through your own cancer journeys know what I mean and probably have your own words to describe what you’ve been and continue to go through. For now, hell is my word. Tomorrow it might be something else.

Putting things into perspective takes time, but it also takes distance. I couldn’t have begun to think about putting things into perspective even a few months ago, let alone last year, but this is where I am now.

My fall wasn’t the worst thing that’s happened recently. The honor for that goes to a friend of ours who was trying to push mom on her walker (it has a seat) through snow and knocked her and himself over in a parking lot. He held onto the walker so mom didn’t smash her head on the pavement and thankfully some passersby came and lifted mom and her walker back up. It happened insanely fast. I turned my head to thank someone for opening a door for us and SPLAT, the next thing I know, mom and our friend are falling backwards onto the pavement. At the time, I was just in shock and scared for mom, because she’s already been through so much and the last thing she needs is more medical stuff to deal with. But now, I know that mom is OK except for some residual achiness (she didn’t even get a bruise) from twisting herself when it happened. I also know that it will take some time before I ever trust that friend to assist me with mom again.

Mom and I continue to march on through our cancer journey. We’re not struggling so much as limping, but we’re both OK and we’re both grateful, because yeah, it could have been so much worse. There are people who began their cancer journeys when mom and I did, who haven’t made it. I think about them a lot, as I remember their amazing courage. Mom could have been one of them, but thankfully, she’s not. We could both be either dead or badly injured right now from our various accidents, but we’re not. Who knows why? Maybe life is finally giving us a break from tragedy or maybe it’s just one of those lucky little things that happens sometimes. Either way, I’m grateful to be well enough to limp and I think mom is too.

This entry was posted in breast cancer, Cancer, Caregiving, Coping, Mom and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to It Could Have Been So Much Worse

  1. Jinxie G says:

    Beautiful post, Rach. And I so get the perspective thing. Just hit that area myself recently.

    *hugs* to you and your mom.

    • Blackbirdsong says:

      *hugs* to you too Jinx

      It’s an ongoing process, as I’m sure you know. Who knows how I’ll feel tomorrow. Thanks for the comment.

  2. christel42 says:

    No matter how treacherous, we always manage to limp/crawl/slither back into the game again. I’ve missed reading your posts regularly, and am so glad to be back stalking everyone online again. LMAO. *hugs*

    PS ~ Knee pads are awesome. Really.

    • Blackbirdsong says:

      Guess I need to buy mom and me some kneepads. Thanks for the comment Christel and welcome back. You have been missed.


  3. I also didn t realize that her massive upper body was so “heavy” that she would have to crawl on all fours if she was a real human.

    • Blackbirdsong says:

      Actually I said it was slippery. Perhaps you’ve never walked or slipped on ice, or perhaps you’re just a troll. Either way, have a blessed day.

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