Life has a ironic sense of humor that, when captured, enriches our understanding of life more than rationally makes sense. Yesterday, a day that began with blissful thoughts of “it”s a great day to be Trish Blackwell,” ended with an afternoon in the ER, gimped out knees, a bruised road-rash covered body, totaled carbon bike, and a non-functioning arm in a splint. But, the funny thing is, it actually was a day where is it was in fact a great day to be Trish Blackwell, for I am lucky to be alive, walking and without severe spinal injury from the freak bike accident I was involved in.
In freak accident fashion, I found myself being pummeled by 50 pound bags of mulch while riding my bike. It was literally raining mulch bags, about 40 of them, onto my head, body and bike. Fate struck so perfectly on point that I passed a large 18-wheeler sized flatbed truck carrying a stockpile of mulch at the very moment that it took a curve in the road too fast, causing its industrial sized canvas safety straps to snap, dumping out literally a ton of mulch on me. As I did a few 360 flips over my handlebars, bounced on and off of the pavement by the crown of my head, and blacked out momentarily, I wasn’t sure if I was dying, if the truck itself had fallen on me, or if I would ever be able to walk again. My spotted memory next finds me crying and bleeding in the grass with witnesses, then strapped in a neck brace in the back of an ambulance, and then finally being cared for in the ER.
The irony of my accident is amplified by the fact that I have spent my week in awe of surfer Bethany Hamilton, who lives joyfully with one arm, for now I too get to temporarily embrace the frustrations of living with the use of just one hand. Even my blog posts this week have lead into helping me rejoice and understand the silver lining in every aspect of my accident, which gives me all the more reason to believe that nothing in life is accidental.
Most importantly, I was given a gift yesterday, a gift of joy. It is humbling to experience so vividly our human fragility. In these moments that we get to, we are able to relish in the beauty of living, breathing, moving, walking, and smiling in ways that we never we able to before. While I can now smile (albeit painfully) about being showered by 2,000 pounds of (pinkish) red mulch, I am smiling even more because of the showers of love I have felt from all my friends, family and loved ones.
It is (still) a great day to be Trish Blackwell. Life is good.