I’m all for Carpe Diem living – “seize the day” – but as I get older, I think twice about spontaneously flipping around on a trampoline, biking long distances without eating properly or slaloming on a windy day. There is a physical reality to getting older and these days, I’m frequently asking the question, “is it worth it?”
When I was younger, it was always worth it, whether it was bungie jumping, running a marathon or doing crazy things like velcroing myself to a wall. My body never betrayed me. If I got hurt, I healed quickly and moved on. But this past year, I have become noticeably more self protective and analytical about taking chances, when it comes to physical activity.
This past weekend, despite the great temptation to go slaloming, I resisted. I watched my younger friend go buzzing around the lake and every cell in my body wanted to do the same. I could almost taste the water spraying into my mouth as I sliced the wake but when it came down to decision time, I declined. The water was choppy and I settled for a calmer activity – tubing. It was fun but for the past few days, I’ve been thinking about that decision. Did I miss an opportunity or did I exercise wise discernment?
Yesterday afternoon, I finally made peace with myself and came to the conclusion that I had made a good decision by saying no to slaloming. About an hour later, I opened the refrigerator door and a glass bowl filled with carrots fell off the shelf and hit my foot in such a random way that it sliced open the top of my big toe. It hurt! I mean, it REALLY hurt and it bled for most of the evening. I think it probably needed a couple of stitches but the closest hospital was about a forty minute drive so I didn’t go. This morning, I woke up to a black toe and a swollen foot. Even as I write, the cut is still oozing blood.
My point is this – I could’t help noticing the irony of it all. I had made the decision not to go skiing because there was the possibility of hurting myself yet I got attacked by a bowlful of carrots and have been immobilized for the past 24 hours!
Life is so unpredictable.
We’re kidding ourselves if we think we’re in control.