Thursday, September 12, 2019

I Know Better Than Saying Such Things Out Loud

I knew I shouldn’t have said it  out loud.

“How could this day get any worse?”
Brad was driving me home from the mechanic as I cursed the day. TWO cars had broken down on me. The 2001 GMC truck, always reliable despite its 230,000+ miles, shuddered and chugged before I traveled a mile earlier that morning. Luckily, I maneuvered it to the curb on a residential street before it completely shut off. I wasn’t far from home, and despite the 100-degree temperature at 10 am, I walked home. That didn’t sidetrack my day for long, and I didn’t think much of it, until Eve and I drove home from her piano lesson around 3 pm and the AC on the suburban died. By that time of day, temps had peaked above 110, and we were HOT. I called Brad, who met me at the mechanic who warned that the AC in 2015-16 suburbans are notorious for going out and the repair is pricey (almost $1900, we discovered).

But really, what else could go wrong?

Something really big, that’s what else.

I finally hopped in the shower around 4 pm, when my phone rang with a number from Denver, CO. I normally don’t answer these almost invariably soliciting calls, but I turned off the shower and answered.

Micah was on the other line.

“Mom, they think I broke my collar bone. Can you come get me?”

I didn’t have a car, remember? I called Brad to run to the school while I quickly showered after I texted our friend. “Could Dr. P squeeze Micah in for a quick X-ray? Think he broke his collar bone.”

Watching Micah gingerly exit the car confirmed his level of pain and the broken bone. He broke his right collar bone several years ago, and he knew.

Neither of us was prepared for Dr. P’s recovery plan.

One month in the sling.
Two months till light sport activity.
Three months till contact sports.

No football.

Dr. P hugged me then sympathetically turned to Micah.

His whole season gone.

He got to play one game, and then a fluke tackle at the end of practice ended it all.

We both were heartbroken.

Later that night, the boys in our ward brought him ice cream and exclaimed over the X-ray. One friend commiserated. He missed the entire last year with a torn ACL. I visited with my friend on the couch, and we shared the agony moms feel when their kids lose entire seasons due to injury.

The next morning, after he left for school, I saw his discarded cleats.
And that’s when I cried for my boy.

I know he’s a sophomore and that he has hopefully two more seasons.

 I also know how this boy lives and breathes football. Every team (college and pro). Every athlete. Every position and play and point.
Thursday (the very next day) was the team’s game, and Micah stood on the sidelines, black sling over his white, padless #8 jersey. Two coaches approached me with condolences. 

One commended Micah for his work ethic and improvement. Small solace but a little salve for the still-fresh wound of disappointment.

Next year, Toros.

Next year.

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