I have had a bit of an accident!
Yesterday, my third day in NY, everything was going swimmingly.
I had seen the Cézanne Drawing exhibit at MoMA. I had visited Wave Hill. I had been to Mass at my beloved St. Vincent Ferrer.
I had another blockbuster of a day planned yesterday. I was to walk up to Orwasher’s Bakery on 78th, then cut across the park, catch the A train and go to the Cloisters (another possible half-hour walk from train as the right stop is closed). And I was making my way up 3rd Ave (I think) or maybe 2nd , all of a sudden I took a giant giant header, splat onto the sidewalk.
Luckily I was clutching my rosary, just starting on the Agony in the Garden, and as I landed I saw the crucifix with a little teeny silver Jesus on it peeping from my left hand, cheered by the thought that if I died, I would be like Antonin Gaudi, on his way home from Mass when fatally struck by a streetcar. Such faith, I imagined people clucking sadly. Why she was praying as she drew her last breath.
I also instantly felt my right knee in pain, hoping it wasn’t too bad but sort of knowing it perhaps wasn’t good. A couple of people stopped to ask if I was okay and I got up and sheepishly grinned and said, “Yeah, I think I’m okay, thank you,” and started limping away up the street. The pain was dull, throbbing, deep, not the sharp pain that I would think indicates a broken bone.
Though who knows.
Of course I insisted on walking probably 7 or 8 blocks to the stupid bakery, for what turned out to be a lackluster almond croissant and an equally lackluster bagel. Then I had to double back, for by this time I had realized there was no way I could make it to the Cloisters, and by the time I was close to home could barely inch my way across 3rd Ave. I did have the presence of mind to purchase a venti Starbucks and then some ice and aspirin and to wend my way up to my fifth floor room, realizing by this time that my day, whole time in NY, and possibly whole trip might have been queered.
I’ve been icing, elevating, and resting, more or less, ever since. Yesterday afternoon I limped laboriously up to Duane Reade. I was going so slow I thought a couple of people might actually stop and offer me money.
My idea was to purchase a knee brace which I figured would both add the C to RICE and also help me walk. Then, once in the store, a thought came to me like a thunderbolt: cane! So I have also bought a freaking cane! And am doing my best as I hobble about to look melodramatically brave and forlorn, so people will feel sorry for me.
I’m so so grateful for my room, which is across the back courtyard from St. Vincent Ferrer and thus puts me in close proximity with the tabernacle, as well as the many priests who live somewhere on the premises even if I can’t see them.
My friend Sheila is coming to visit momentarily.
And all is well.
36 Replies to “AND I THOUGHT I WAS INVINCIBLE”
Prayers for continued healing.
What would have happened if you hadn’t thought to send those traveling mercies, Br. Rex! I could have had a COMPOUND FRACTURE! Blessings and prayers to you…
I hope it feels better soon! xoxoxox
Aw thanks so much, Dianaa! I’m always amazed that you read my blog–lots of love to you and your family–
Heather, there must be some low-income clinic nearby with a Catholic physician or a dear Catholic doctor who is affiliated with St Vincent who could at least look at your knee. Prayers to Our Lady, Health of the Sick to help you in your time of need coming! Divine Physician and holy angels, come to Heather’s aid!
Not to worry, Angela, I have a Medicare Advantage plan, and there is what looks like a great Urgent Care just a few blocks from me–I’m heading up there first thing tomorrow! And I’m very grateful for your prayers, which I know have already helped–
Praying for your healing!
Thank you, Ann, I swear the swelling is going down as we speak! +++
Praying for a quick recovery. Never a dull moment in God’s vineyard. Are you badly bruise and swollen ?
Keep us updated
Dear Monique, no, never a dull moment! Yes, the darn thing is swollen front, sides and down the back of my shin…I don’t see any bruising or hematoma but will find out tomorrow what’s going on…You’re so kind: a thousand thanks for your prayers and good wishes. I will report back! Much love to you as well–
I’m so sorry to hear of your fall. I hope there is no fracture and you recover quickly. It’s Sunday here in Australia and I just picked up my Magnificat at the same time clicking on your email. Of late I’ve been carrying my rosary in my pocket just like my father’s always done, he’s been through a few! As our churches are still closed here, I’m preparing for on-line mass and will keep you in my prayers; I enjoy your refreshing writings so much, thank you and all the best xo
Oh thank you, Stephanie–I’ll have X-rays and whatever else they want me to do tomorrow–my sense is that it’s a sprain but what do I know? I picked up that habit of carrying a rosary in my pocket a few years ago, too. It’s so nicely old-ladyish! And gives me something to touch and hold on to…Then again, the habit is also manly, as with your father, and I know many if not practically all priests carry one, too. All other things being equal, why NOT keep Mary close by? That is so hard to have your churches in Australia closed still–let’s pray they open soon, and all the very best to you as well! xo
Oh no! Prayers for a speedy recovery. St. Vincent Ferrar was my son’s parish for 3.5 years until he moved away.
Oh Emily, so have you been? I just went to the 6 pm Mass and WEPT. SO beautiful. Probably my favorite church of all-time–
I am a devoted reader and I live in Manhattan. I am available if you need anything brought to you or need help getting out. Dr. Donald Rose is not too far from you and is an amazing orthopedist, should you need it.
More than happy to lend a hand!
Oh Andrea, how kind! I have just returned from Urgent Care, wonderful place on 3rd Ave and 67th–they took an X-ray, hairline fracture, but the doc said the treatment is the same as for a sprain–rest, ice, elevation, compression–and cleared me for the rest of my trip as long as I take it easy. I can’t describe how comforting it is to be right next to St. V Ferrer–I went to 6 pm Mass last night and just ducked in to give thanks–so I think I’ll be okay–but if anything comes up, I will not hesitate to call upon you. Many thanks–
Prayers for healing Heather! Six weeks ago while walking my dog, the toe of my Keens got caught on a broken sidewalk and I fell too and injured my ribs. It’s the worst! My mantra is slow down and watch where you’re going. Get some Arnica cream and use it. It’s wonderful! Sending you all the love in the whole wide world ♥️♥️♥️
Gosh, Rose, we could start a whole newsletter about trips, slips and falls! Oh, your ribs, ouch. Hope you are healing up, and thanks for the Arnica cream tip. You never realize how much you use any given part of your body till you injure it…I did something to my wrist a few years ago and couldn’t reach into a pocket, zip up a fly…sending love back! The human body, such an amazing organism…
Dear Heather, I am praying for you and will ask prayers for you tomorrow at my parish, San Carlos Cathedral in Monterey. A year ago I tripped over my dog’s leash as I was taking him down the stairs at 5:30 am so he could go potty. I took a flying leap and crash landed on my knee. Like you I took a moment to realize I hadn’t hit my head and nothing was broken. But like you I experienced such pain! I tell you this just to say I know the shock and the vulnerability of being hurt and I am identifying with you. Please keep us posted as to what the x-rays show. What a curve ball!!! 🙏 Joyce Bock
Oh Joyce, I know San Carlos well–am friends with the dear Fr. Pat Dooling and have even stayed in one of the guest rooms at the rectory there! Another truly beautiful church, now that you mention it, maybe my second most favorite in the world…Monterey itself wonderful, of course. Yes, it’s such a strange, elongated moment when you realize Oh wow I am flying through the air, that can’t be good (though in a weird way it’s kind of interesting), and then you land…right, your first thought being Can I move? Can I stand? Can I walk? Can I get the hell out of here?..I hope you’re all healed up by now—X-ray this morning showed hairline fracture but I will heal day by day and the dr. said take it easy but I am basically okay…many thanks for the good wishes and prayers!
I’m so sorry. Praying you have a quick recovery and lovely rest of your trip.
Thank you so much, John! I have given myself over to letting the rest of the trip be what it is, instead of imposing my usually somewhat headlong daily itinerary upon it. I didn’t plan to spend much of my time in NY lying in bed with my leg iced and elevated, and yet I’ve been feeling strangely happy! I would never rest like this on my own and I have food, juice, reading material and my rosary–I’m sure this will give rise to an essay or two! Also I have visitors! A friend came over yesterday and another is coming this afternoon and I’ll have lunch, somehow, with a third friend tomorrow–so what’s not to be grateful for…It’s just amazing how the body instantly goes into healing mode…I can almost feel it, minute by minute…a blessed Sunday to you!
As we get older (I’m 74 now) I seem to knock into things easily. I am always reminding myself to be in the moment. Praying without ceasing still requires this. My you heal well and quickly!
Thanks, dear Jeff, yes, being present in the moment is an area in which I have a long way to go. This was definitely a prod! I get to pray without ceasing while also keeping watch where I’m going! I so appreciate the prayers from the SoCal dez–love to you and Maxine–
If I were with you, I would carry you on my back. Well, at least for a couple of blocks.
Fast healing prayers are coming your way….Karin E
Karin, did you move??? Shoot me an email so I know how and where you are! know you would carry me on your back–thank you. xxx
I walk 5 days a week. Each day I pray that a sidewalk or small rock won’t step up and cause me to stumble. I must remember to look where I’m going instead of daydreaming. That can be difficult when admiring all of the flowers. I pray that you will heal without any recurring trouble.
Yes, Bonnie–something was actually sticking out over the sidewalk from the curb when I looked back, looked like a slender cut-off tree trunk, but it was a couple of feet off the ground and I did think: How could I not have seen that?! So you’re right–this was a huge wake-up call to pay more attention. I at least wasn’t looking at my phone–but I’m sure I was daydreaming…
INvincible means that nothing stops you, so by this definition you ARE invincible! But it would still be a good idea to have a doctor look at your knee. 🙂 Get well soon!
Thank you, Barbara! I did go the doctor and have an X-ray–a sprain and tiny fracture, so I will continue with my regimen. Healing by the day but I think it’ll be a while before I’m back to 100%–very instructive to be partially immobilized–
I hope you recover soon. I know you are a walker, so I pray you aren’t in too much pain as you continue your travels. That you were holding your rosary when you fell brought back a memory: I was once jumped by two thieves in São Paulo. They held me against a wall and were going to rob me. They started going through my pockets. They pulled out my grandfather’s rosary, which I carry with me when I am out and about. They both looked at it, gave it back to me, and then told me to run as fast as I could. I ran so fast to the main avenue… I know both Mary and my grandfather are looking out for me. I know Mary is looking out for you, too.
What a great story, David. I kind of joke about constantly carrying a rosary (or two, or three)–but all other things being equal–why not? I’m so glad your grandfather and your guardian angel were looking out for you that night in São Paulo–Yup, I’m a daily walker so it’s been interesting to be stopped dead in my tracks and taking about ten steps a minute with a cane! The knee is a teeny bit less tender each day–so I know it’s healing but my sense is that it’ll take a while…many thanks for your kind good wishes.
I’m praying for your recovery.
Thank you, Yvette! That means a lot…and it is not the first time you’ve prayed for me. Prayers and every blessing to you as well–
I am glad you are getting better. I had a fall myself on the undulating sidewalks of Prytania St. in New Orleans in June walking back from noon Mass at St. Patrick Cathedral.
I have rediscovered you.
I enjoy your YouTube videos, essays and walks through your garden.
Kenneth, delightful to hear from you. Clearly, a book is in order: Slip-and-Falls: An Anthology. My knee hurt so much that it was only a couple of days ago that I realized I screwed up my ankle, too, with a bruise all the way up the back of my shin! Healing by the day, though–so sorry for your mishap in NO–glad to be back safely in Tucson, where the new garden begins to take shape…all the best and I’m glad you re-discovered me.