If it Weren’t for Good Luck . . .

Funny Animal Captions - 16 Years Later
My horoscope today:

You’ll come across special offerings from life the likes of which other people don’t realize exist.
It’s as though the forces that be are reserving a bit of magic intended just for you.

Sounds kind of cool, doesn’t it?

Problem is, it wasn’t specific enough.

At one o’clock this afternoon, my department was hopping: if the phone didn’t ring, someone came up to the desk to ask for help, and every time I moved more than three feet from the desk, the phone would ring. There were forms and complicated explanations and requests that had to be recorded and letters that had to be written, and printers that jammed up for no reason.

It was one of those days where you just hang on, do triage best you can, and try not to mind the inbox-outbox ratio.

At two o’clock, every supervisor in the building went to the weekly Admin meeting.

That was okay, since we were covered for the desk.

At two-thirty, the switchboard put a call through specifically to me—my SIL, telling me that my husband was in the emergency room with a seriously screwed up back, and while my MIL was able to pick up Sunny from pre-kindergarten, it was looking like no one would be able to pick up Janie from school at 3:30.

Not so okay.

I couldn’t interrupt the Admin meeting to have a supervisor sign my slip and I couldn’t just walk off the job. So I called Janie’s school and left a message that she needed to go to After Care, and someone would be there as soon as possible, then called my SIL to tell her that the first one on her way to Janie should call the other one, and I’d be out as soon as I could then called the school again until I reached a Real Human Being.

And all the while, my co-workers and I were fielding questions and problems in phone and in person for patrons.

So I waited for an hour, guilty and busy and wondering if I could get to Janie in time to get her home and changed and snacked in time for her very first softball game at five—until I received the text from her coach that reminded everyone to assemble at four-thirty— and worried to death that my non-salaried husband would be incapacitated for more than a few days and how I was going to get everyone everywhere until he was up and about . . . If, my stress whispered, he ever was.

At four, my desk shift was over, so I ran upstairs to catch my boss coming out of the meeting, took the signed form to our HR person and explained that I was sure if it was sick or comp time and I was too late to mind either, and high-tailed it to the parking lot, where I caught a message from my SIL saying she had the kids and what now?

We decided that since I was going to pass the hospital, I’d take care of my husband and the meds and she and my MIL and Sunny would go to Janie’s game.   So I drove to the hospital, behind a series of people who didn’t believe in a minimum speed limit.

I found Emergency, parked, and sent him a text asking where he was.

He told me to turn around, because I’d just driven right past him.

I did and was told not to help as he levered himself into the car.  Turns out, he has a bad muscle sprain—maybe even a small tear.

The man is  in serious pain and loopy from the meds and frustrated and upset with missing so much work—he’s down flat at least until Friday—and Janie’s game.

And that’s when I remembered . . . my husband is also a Gemini.

Talk about your special offerings.  Thanks, forces that be.  Can’t tell you how much we appreciate it.

But, you know . . . we’re insured and the meds are covered.

My SIL was there to pick up the considerable slack, and I have plenty of sick time to cover my hours today and maybe tomorrow, if I’m needed here instead of there.

My husband is napping on the couch in a position that feels okay to him.  Janie walked on her first bat and then stole second and third—my SIL has been sending me a play-by-play—while her little sister and grandmother cheer her on.

And dinner—spaghetti and meatballs and garlic breadsticks—is cooking away while I take the opportunity to type up a post that took a few turns since I’d first read that horoscope.

I guess those are special life offerings, too.

Don’t get me wrong—it still sucks and the next few days won’t be fun.  And there may still be orthopedic surgery in our future.But maybe the magical part is that it all could have been much, much worse.

Terrifying thought . . . but under the circumstances, I’ll take it.


18 thoughts on “If it Weren’t for Good Luck . . .

  1. Aw, man! Was this a yoga related injury? They’re the worst because you’re going on the assumption that you’re doing all this healthy stuff for yourself and then, bang, you get hurt. It’s really not fair. I hope he heals swiftly and that your stress is short lived.

    There’s been all this talk of badass people lately. You and your family are so badass, stepping up to the plate collectively and getting the job done. Together, you’re a force. What a beautiful thing.

    • As far as we can tell, it was a sleeping awkwardly around a midnight child visitor/teaching two yoga classes/sitting in a kitchen chair/snap! injury. And he keeps thinking he can do things like turn around . . .

      I don’t know what we would have done without my SIL, I really don’t.

  2. Oh no! Poor man! Back pain is just awful, there’s no way to get comfortable and it seems to take forever to get everything back into alignment.

    Lots of love to you and your fella. And I’m with MSB–you’re a total badass and so is your SIL for stepping in to help. You’re always showing us how it’s done, Sarah.


    • I didn’t do much at all, except worry—everyone else made everything happen.

      He’s on the couch tonight, as it’s firmer than our mattress and it doesn’t have me rolling over and won’t have midnight child visitors. I’m hoping the cat leaves him alone, though, or there might be mayhem.

  3. That horoscope was a reminder that everything – our bodies, the systems and routines we use to create order – they’re all so fragile.

    I think your approach is definitely badass. Efficiently so. When one thing came apart, you’d created a safety net for your family and its many moving parts. Plus you found a way to appreciate what you have.

    Yep. Badass.

  4. .The dreaded back pain. I know it well. Hope he mends soon.

    The magic was also the support of your SIL and MIL – those are some good ILs you’ve got Sarah.

    • I hope so, too, Downith. It’s grouchy bear time around here . . .

      I married into a pretty terrific family—I just wish my FIL could have met the kids . . .

  5. What a day!
    Let’s hear it for the working mom. That’s when it is so, so hard, when one thing happens and you realize how everything is conntigent on all the players being healthy. One man down and it falls apart. Your SIL is a rockstar.
    Whenever this happens to us, I go through wild swings, upset that I can’t be there when my kids/husband needs me. It devastates me.
    Then he reminds me that somehow/someway it works out in the end. My MIL has saved us so many times as once I’m in the city, I might as well be on the moon for the speed I’d be able to get home. Cheers to the whole crew that keeps our families running and I hope your husband’s back is good as new sooner than late!

    • Thanks, Lyra. My husband and I like to say we practice tag-team parenting, and it’s amazing how much more difficult it is when there’s no one to tag!

  6. When I started reading, I was sure it was a fortune cookie rather than a horoscope. (I’m sure you’re aware that nothing good ever comes from a fortune cookie.) There is nothing like family to circle the wagons and take care of business when it is needed.

    The chaos at work? It’s gotta be the moon. It’s wrecking havoc everywhere.

    • I love fortune cookies, actually—the fortunes are odd, but the advice isn’t bad. 🙂

      And I’m just glad we have enough wagons to circle!

      I wondered about the moon. Anyone who claims the moon doesn’t affect people never worked in a library.

  7. Aww shucks ya’all. You’re makin’ me blush, now. Least I can do is help out, keep a calm head during semi-emergencies, and ask the scary questions. And entertain the chil-rens lol – alas, the flip flop soft shoe shuffle didn’t even have to come out…

    I didn’t do anything out of the ordinary – just what needed to be done.

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