I wound up with my first ever black eye last week! It’s not something that I would recommend to anyone. But let me explain what happened, and why I’m writing about it.
Things tend to happen when you’re in a hurry, or not paying much attention to what you’re doing — or both. Right? It was early evening, and I went over to our front room windows to close the blinds. I had closed one, and went to close the other, when I somehow got my feet tangled up between the legs on our ottoman and the coffee table.
Instantly I knew I was going down. And I knew I was going to go down hard! There was no way to stop my fall. It was like everything was happening in slow motion. I landed hard on my left side.
Within a couple minutes, my knee and the left side of my face began to swell. My husband quickly got two cold-packs out of the freezer, and brought them to me. There I sat on our couch with one on the side of my face, and one on my knee. I really wanted a “do-over!” I wanted another chance to mindfully go over and close the blinds. It was too late though. The damage was already done.
By the next morning, my knee was very colorful and still puffy. But I could stand on it, and knew I’d be able to go up and down the stairs at work. The side of my face was swollen, but I only had a little bruising on my eyelid. I decided that I was lucky, and it wasn’t that noticeable. (Thinking back on it, I was also lucky that I hadn’t broken anything!)
But the following morning, when I looked in the mirror, I was shocked! I looked liked someone had taken dark purple and black markers while I slept, and had drawn a strange, dark mask all around my left eye. It covered my eyelid, below my eye, and on the left and right sides of my eye. As the week progressed, I would wake up each morning, with subtle changes in coloring. Over a week later, I still have my black eye, but now it’s yellow-green and purple.
Whenever something negative happens, I try to figure out if there’s something I can learn from it. In this case, I know that if I’d been paying closer attention to what I was doing, I wouldn’t have gotten tripped up. I believe so much in being mindful. I’ve written about it many times, and I always talk to clients about its importance. Now, I can empathize in a whole new way, when clients tell me that mindfulness is hard. It is difficult to always be in the moment!
I’m not recommending that you become hypervigilant. I’m just encouraging you to be aware of your movements. Try not to do things so automatically that you wind up not paying adequate attention. Accidents can happen. I found that out the hard way. Be mindful, and stay safe!
Until next time,