I'm pretty sure when Ferris Bueller said to slow down in life, he wasn't referring to recovery from hip surgery but boy does it prove this to be true. After being in the protective cacoon of my hospital bed in recovery for 4 weeks, it's time to put down the crutches and brave the world again. Or so I am told. By my doctors and therapists. A standard timeline.
My first solo adventure sans crutches was to Whole Foods, of all places. I thought I could breeze in and out with no trouble because my mind has returned to operating as fast as always with my body, unbeknownst to me yet, moving at a snails pace. The only places I've been were my parents house, the doctors and my radio show. I had yet to return to "amongst the living".
I luck out and find a spot up front, which wouldn't be luck if I would just give in to having the handicap placard but I can't, yet! "I'm 36 and a vibrant fit young lady," my mind tells me but that thought was quickly fleeting as I struggle for a bit but finally get myself out of my car to standing.
"I'm naked. And. I'm in a parking lot. I'm like the frogger" - This is the best way to describe the feeling of not having my crutches to crutch and having to rely on myself to walk. My first two steps are baby steps and I think to myself, "get moving" but I can't. Gravity has gotten it's hand in the mix and all pressure is on me. I'm serious. The pressure that gravity puts on us is unbelievable. Talk about the weight of the world on my shoulders. My steps only moving me forward inches at a time. A line of cars is starting to form as I try to cross to get a cart. I look perfectly healthy, as if I'm just fucking with everyone. There is nothing I can do to move faster which prompts a man to scream "Can you walk already!?" - No. I can't! Seriously. I have to learn how to walk again and that takes time.
Cars now whizzing around me because everyone is rushed. The world around me feels to be moving at ludicrous speed. A woman so hurried she hits my incision area with her hand basket without even a notice. Without fail, over and over "can I squeeze by" and "mind if I get around you?"'s politely hitting me left and right with others just glaring. Nobody slowing down for a minute. My fav employees asking what's up with this enevitable awkward good bye, where I can't walk away fast and they keep saying "good to see, you get well. " and I just keep answering "will do" "thanks so much" "you're so sweet!".
My mind keeps pressuring me to hurry up hurry up, move it girl but then as the world around me continued in its fast whirlwind, my eyes caught a glimpse of a little girl messing with the flowers while her mom picked produce. This little girl took a flower from a bouquet and walked over to the old lady next to her mom struggling to open a plastic bag for her fruit and handed it to her. The old lady and mother laughed and smiled and the mother returned the flower, as I laughed and smiled from a distance to myself.
All this time spent hurrying and rushing to be where I am not, is making me miss all of the little things of where I am now. From that beautiful moment on, I've continued to slow my roll. I walk slow and take baby steps. I asked for the handicap placard and I'm still using my crutches and taking my time because you can't hurry healing, even if you're trying to rush through life. With all the brutality and pain I've faced through getting hit by a car while riding my bike, with multiple surgeries, endless procedures and therapy, it wasn't until I was forced to slow down by disability and saw a silly little girl try to brighten an old lady's day with a stolen flower, did I realize the hidden gift I have been given. With the weight of the world on my shoulders I can say without a doubt "Ferris Beuller, you're my hero!"