On Monday, I broke my arm.
I was running down the stairs, eager to get the garbage out before my next meeting. I slipped on a step, and fell, landing on my hand.
I ignored the pain and carried on.
The next morning the arm was swollen and could not stretch all the way.
I went to the ER, and a X-Ray confirmed the suspicions – broken very cleanly right at the elbow. No cast required, only a sling to rest the arm, and painkillers if the pain got really bad.
Is it weird to say I’m actually happy about this?
Here is what I have learned so far:
Perfectionism can be ignored
I’m a tidy person.
Now there are dirty dishes in the sink, and used clothes strewn on the bathroom floor. Cups and plates gather on surfaces in the living room. My right arm is unable to lift things, so I’m doing what is necessary and the rest has to wait.
Although the clutter stresses me, it’s ok to experience not being perfect.
Life goes on, I have discovered.
Improvisation is fun
We do many things on autopilot, like toweling off after a shower, or even turning around in bed.
Break your arm and you will notice every action you do. Every autopilot maneuver now has to be revisited and re-engineered. How do I solve this problem?
Everything seems new and it’s invigorating to explore new ways to do things.
Patience is a virtue
This arm will heal in its own time.
I can only support the healing by resting. Nothing else will make any difference. Projects will have to wait. Work will be done slower. Life has a new pace.
Here I am in the middle of it. Learning to slow down more. Writing less, but reading more. Knitting less, and being more.
I don’t recommend hurting yourself. But maybe take a weekend and pretend something is not functioning to give yourself the joy of stepping out of your routines.