“Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time.”

Stephen Wright

Mr. Wright may not be known to everyone. He is one of my favorite comedians. He delivers truisms with a twist, no smile, and a raw wit.

Time. Everywhere is in walking distance with enough of it. Or in my case, nowhere is in walking distance since breaking 6 bones in my foot and ankle this morning. And right now time seems greater between minutes, from hour to hour, and from Percocet to the next dose.

All the worrying and anxiety that is my norm on a daily basis suddenly seems silly and it’s own waste of time. “How will I accomplish A, B, and C in time? Should I work on A before or after I do B? What would happen if I procrastinate doing the laundry?” Everything is a series of queries on duties and “shoulds” and whether or not I have succeeded at my daily agenda. I strategize when to grocery shop, when to get a walk in, what order to do my errands for greatest efficiency. My brain is insufferable in the amount of work it undertakes to fill in my hours best.

Today it is different. I am home from the hospital with family around me assisting with basic needs. My big accomplishment is safely getting to the bathroom. I have told my daughter, “the kitchen is now yours.” I told my son, “since the doctor says I need ice, please buy some ice cream.” I have managed to find replacements for my work. I listen to the hum of the washing machine, dishwasher, and kitchen gadgets as dinner is magically being prepared. It is all getting done…without me.

And I stare down the road of endless hours of being sedentary…planning the books I will read, the letters I will write, and the healing that awaits.


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