Several years ago I was working at a psychiatric facility in Compton, CA.  Sometimes I would pick up coffee in the morning on my way to work.

One morning I had my coffee in hand and was walking toward the hospital when I slipped and fell. Actually, I slipped on the top of a stairwell and as I feel down the stairs I managed to “save” the coffee.  (Literally it was like that fall from Clueless the movie if you saw it.) In other words, as I fell stair by stair I made sure to hold up the cup so it wouldn’t spill, forget about my body.

Later that day when I went home I saw that the top stair had been replaced with a new stopper.  You know those sandpaper like strips they put on stairs to avoid people from falling.  Someone had seen me fall and obviously reported it.  When I got back to headquarters I made a joke about my fall and it became a serious thing. I had to fill out paperwork, and report the “injury.”  I was going to get some bruises but so what?  Ok I get it liability, liability, why else would they so swiftly report the “dangerous” stair. The world we live in.

Anyway, years later I fell over on my Vespa, and instead of worrying about my body, I launched myself under the motor scooter to save it from any damage. What….The… What?!

Why am I risking my body over material things?  Am I not worthy or second best to a cup of coffee or a moving vehicle?  I don’t know.  Why do I put my body last?

I’m getting old. I need to start taking care of myself, especially my flesh and bones, so I make a better effort these days. But, it’s not my first reaction.  My instinct is to salvage something other than myself.  That’s not ok.

Next time I fall, I am throwing the coffee aside to help save my body from hitting all those stairs. Next time I fall off my bike I am jumping on it to save myself from hitting the concrete.  Next time my body comes first.

And why has it not been my priority till now? It’s not just cause I am getting older, and wiser, maybe I’m valuing myself mores these days then before. Maybe my confidence has been lifted, and I take pride in securing my body above all. As it should be.