An advertisement for a writer's retreat.

By John Pierce

Two weeks ago my left wrist was surgically repaired with a plate and four screws. Running and slipping on a wet, grassy hill was not the wisest decision of my life.

However, having my first broken bone now has me feeling rather fortunate — considering all the stupid stuff I’ve done over my lifetime.

The hardware is set to come out around World Series time, and I’ve learned to do most tasks sufficiently — though more slowly — with one hand.

Of course, there are some downsides. While many would welcome an extended break from home and yard projects, I miss those requiring more strength than I can give now. And one-handed writing and editing takes more time than before.

Otherwise, I’m back in the groove — but hope to benefit from the lessons learned during this unscheduled break in my arm and plans.

Lesson one: Slow is not always bad. My hope is to better schedule such times in the future rather than having them imposed.

Lesson two: It’s OK to ask for help. Self-sufficiency is overrated. Most people really don’t mind twisting the lid off a bottle or other tasks that were once done without thought but now are challenging. Leaning on each other enriches relationships.

Lesson three: Breaking routines has benefits. Although I’ve moved back into most of my daily routines, good perspective is gained from being out of them briefly. Foremost, I am more aware of life’s simple and joyful opportunities afforded each day.

Access to good medical services and the support of family, friends and colleagues have grown in my appreciation. From the time of my accident until now, so many have been very caring and helpful.

As bone mends and the fuller use of an injured extremity returns, my hope is that these lessons learned will long remain. Perhaps a little scar will be that reminder.

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