Archive for September, 2022

It’s day number five in the chair and I’ve already had enough.

Enough with the nest I made in the corner of the sectional. Enough with showering in a chair, even if it is a fancy teak bench. Enough with being confined to two rooms at the back of the house because there’s an inch and a half step into the kitchen. Enough of being dependent on Bob for literally everything… otoh I’m so glad he’s holding up!

IF I wanted to be grateful, and I do WANT to be, I’d write about the weather. This is that short heavenly time in the South – the time when it’s almost like being in California. Almost. Temps are in the 70-80s with low humidity and very few bugs. Bob helps me haul myself out to the zero gravity chair in the backyard and all the pain melts away under a beautiful blue sky while I get 15 minutes of vitamin D.

Ms Bean lies beneath the lavender hedge to keep me company.

I’d write about my daughter, who stops in nearly every day and arranged for a yoga teacher to give me my very own chair-yoga-practice. I’m definitely grateful to her for schlepping the grandkids and my emergency back-up emotional support French Bulldog with her. Even the Groom visits when she’s working. It’s good to have three docs in the family.

I’m very grateful to my family and friends, to everyone who called, texted and emailed. For bringing us Vietnamese food and wine. For having a clear-out-the fridge dinner before we were supposed to leave for Italy. And speaking of Italy; a big thank you to our friends for keeping us in the loop. Every day we get a pic or a text from the gang, who I will now dubb “The Italian Job” after a movie from 2003.

“The Italian Job is simple. An explosive guy, a safe-cracker, a computer genius, a wheel-man and a man with a spectacular plan of stealing 35 Million in gold bars.”

I loved that movie! OUR Italian Job includes an educational administrator, an educator, a lawyer, an engineer and a public health official who plan on enjoying their tour with Marco and Claudio and their truffle sniffing dog. Maybe they will buy some gold for their wives? Or maybe the wives will buy them something, or they will send big crates of red wine and cheese home?

I’m already planning the next soiree.

The biggest thanks goes to Bob for putting up with my, “Honey could you do me a favor” queries every few hours minutes. But while we’re all wondering just what Mr T was doing with his cohorts on his golf course in NJ, I’ve been putting the Love Bug to work. My wheelchair can’t fit into the new MBR closet, so I asked her to finish gilding my plain wooden full length mirror. I’ve never owned a full length mirror, and now I can’t even see myself in it, which is just as well.

Because as I’m writing this at the game table in the family room since I also can’t fit into the Snug, I can see that my gratitude is outweighing my grief.

My Golden Girl

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Today I wore my airplane travel outfit and stayed home – comfy Eileen Fisher sweats and my new lilac shearling Berks.

Today is the day we were supposed to meet up with our friends in Viareggio, Italy and cook together and laugh together and visit wineries and flower markets and you get the picture.

Instead, Bob ordered a wheelchair and a walker and we sat around without wifi because Google Fiber was down.

Another old school thing I did was reread Mary Laura Philpot’s book “Bomb Shelter.” It has served me well over the past year. She was writing about people who have nothing better to do than criticize perfect strangers. Some woman at a book conference told her no one would take her seriously if she dressed “that way.”

How was she dressed? She had on a colorful fuzzy patterned skirt.

It reminded me of meeting someone outside in a tent on the Navesink River. It was a fancy fundraiser for something and I was introduced as the local columnist . This older woman with a ponytail and a big bow at the nape of her neck said, “So THAT’S you claim to fame!” Then she turned away and took another sip of Chardonnay.

I wish I had a list of snappy rebuttals. I should have said, “Honestly Bunny, where do you buy your ribbons?” Or “Well aren’t you a rude bitch?” and walked away. Instead I swallowed my pride because like Philpot, I desperately wanted to be taken seriously.

Women get a bad rap. We need to smile. We need to be caretakers and selfless, humble human beings. We are expected to wear makeup and dress a certain way. That is what my generation was taught. But what we really need to be is cheerleaders for each other. We should be passing on the light, encouraging our sisters to reach farther, to climb our very own ladders of success.

We told our daughters that anything was possible, and then after 49 years of settled precedent, Roe was defeated.

And I fell off a tiny ladder and it turns out it was worse than I could have imagined and I kept walking and stretching and pushing until I couldn’t walk anymore. It serves me right, thinking pure willpower would fix a broken bone. So now I have two! The doctor told me to “shut it down,” no more walking. Rest.

I’m taking myself seriously now. I’m listening to my orthopedic doctor and I’ll sit in a wheelchair for awhile. But today the Queen died.

I thought about her life and her Corgis and how people always took her seriously. It just came with the job. I’d watched every single episode of the Crown; her legacy of selfless devotion to her people seems archaic today. But I adored her. I’m sure she was thrilled that Harry and Meghan named their daughter after her. She was the same age as Great Grandma Ada when she died.

My MIL Adala who wrote a thesis about using humor in therapy. Who studied to become a clown. I’d rather be a cheerleader than a critic in this one life we get to live.

Wouldn’t you?

My last stand

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