Last night, as we got into bed, I took a heavy quilt off my side of the bed and tossed it aside. It had been my second attempt at using a weighted blanket for anxiety and sleep. Here’s the thing… yes, it feels good to have extra weight on top but it’s … well, duh… heavy… and also hot, especially when the person beside you is a human blowtorch.
Also, there are the cat-considerations. By that I mean, if the blanket slips off the bed and lands on your cat, they can’t get out from under it because it’s too heavy. Are Anxiety Blankets Safe for Pets?
Consequently, I got rid of the actual weighted blanket and have been using a heavier quilt that is safe but still gives me that “cocoon” feel.
I folded it before gently tossing it onto a box by the closet. Gently. Well, I may have *meant* to toss it gently but it was super-heavy all folded up and as I yanked my arm back from the momentum of the toss, the fleshy part below my elbow caught on two surfaces, both very pointy. One, the corner of my dresser, which is right next to the bed, and two, the corner of a drawer that was open just a smidge but sticking out.
What you need to know. I bleed easily and have very thin skin because of my inhaled steroids for asthma and also… yeah, getting older… and, of course, genetics.
What happened next was inevitable. Two dime-sized, triangle-shaped wounds iimmediately appeared, bloody and bruised. I won’t show them to you because it’s gross, even by my “TMI or not TMI?” standards. Trust me, they’re there, under the bandage.
Also, you will need to know that my knee gave out last night. This is an older injury that crops up from time-to-time.
And, I had a sinus headache, which has been plaguing me for the last three or four nights. Not a migraine… but it can trigger it. The weather has been heavy and the change in seasons always does a number on me.
And, almost as soon as it happened… I was worried about blood poisoning because “health anxiety.“
So, I’m cleaning the wounds and berating myself for being so stupid and clumsy and I can feel the tears welling in my eyes.
Tears are pretty much my constant companion since Dad died (a month ago). Maybe that’s adding to the headache, I think to myself, as I wrap some gauze around my arm.
By the time I get back into bed, I’m a sobbing mess.
“What’s the matter with me? I hate that I’m so vulnerable. This looks awful,” I say to my husband.
“You’re going to be okay,” he says, as he takes my hand. “You have thin skin and it looks much worse than it is. It will heal.” And then, “You’re worried about Bette,” our cat, who was staying overnight at the vet after a surgery/ biopsy. <<< Did I forget to mention that? Our beautiful Bette!
I say, “I am. But also, I wasn’t paying attention. The blanket was so heavy and the momentum is what made my arm fly so hard into the dresser.”
By then, I’m bawling.
“This looks exactly like the kind of thing that made my doctor test me for leukaemia,” I say.
“But you didn’t have it,” he says. “You don’t have it,” he adds.
Now I’m practically wailing.
“I am the biggest failure. I’m old and fat. Nobody will hire me. My blog isn’t making money. I can’t even scratch my arm without it turning into something major.”
He says, “That wasn’t just a scratch. It’s like you took something and gouged into your arm.”
“I know,” I say. And I do. Except, not. “Why is all this happening?”
“You’re grieving,” he says, more quietly.
“Yes,” I say, before crumbling completely.
“I’m so far away from my family and I hate this fucking pandemic. The last time I saw my dad it was over FaceTime and he was dead. I couldn’t even touch him. That can NEVER be changed. I miss him! Life is so unfair.”
I cried for a half hour and then pulled myself together enough to say that he should get some sleep. He had to work in the morning.
And here we are. A new day.
I was afraid to look at my arm this morning, so he did. “It’s okay, look,” he said.
It still looks gross but is clearly already beginning to heal. It’s gonna leave a nasty mark. I have a few of those… leftover injuries from walking into the corner of the couch full-throttle or other such dangerous endeavors.
This is my life, my reality. I’m very sensitive in all ways, including my tissue-paper skin. And I’m still grieving and will be… back and forth… and back and forth again… for the rest of my life, I’m sure.
I’ve covered my arm with this flesh-colored bandaid and the healing will go on under it. I know the wound is still there.
But I am wounded in other, not as easily-seen ways.
Today, I am showing you the wound of my father’s passing…
So far away. Too far away to reach.
I will put on a happy-face-bandaid and go about my day being careful on my knee and picking up groceries and welcoming Bette home with love (results to come next week but in the meantime, the doctor was encouraged by what he found.)
Healing will occur… and… life will … indeed … go on.
So will the tears. But now, I need a Tylenol.