Gopher Gulch: Sometimes, it really does take a village

Inez Castor

The swallows are back, the lilacs are blooming and spring is evident wherever you look. And three months to the day after repairing my shattered wrist, Dr. Meyers gave me permission to lift up to 5 pounds. Can't do it yet, but anything less than that I know is safe.

It's been difficult, this being still and requiring help. I've never been helpless before and I'm not good at it. Perhaps I needed this taste of what may be in the future for most of us.

The best part is all the help I was given so freely. I've been alone for years, and this has brought people back into my life. I'd forgotten how nice it is to visit with another woman, to go shopping together, to share a lunch or a laugh.

Every couple of Wednesdays Dona took me to shop and get x-rays; we

took turns choosing a place for lunch. We'll continue having outings

together, trying new things, sharing our favorite places. There are so

many simple things I've never done.

When the hair hanging in my eyes made me crazy and I couldn't cut it

myself, I noticed an ad in The Daily Triplicate for Shear Joy Salon,

where Jasmin cut my hair much better than I ever did. Going to a beauty

shop is one of the simple things I'd never done, and Jasmin is so

delightful that I plan to visit her every few weeks.

Jeanne took the x-rays and encouraged me with comparisons of earlier

x-rays when I got discouraged, letting me watch the fine white threads

of bone knitting together.

On Thursdays, Diane took me to the doctor's office, sometimes staying

to visit when she brought me home. You can get awfully tired of your

own company when you're unable to swamp out the joint, paint walls or

any of the other things one does to stay busy indoors.

Sally and Mike were always just up the road if I needed them. Now

that I can safely walk, Sally and I will begin taking walks in the

neighborhood, both for exercise and companionship. Her granddaughter,

Rylee, has become part of my life. Articulate and opinionated, she can

help me understand the forces that shape our young people in the 21st


It may be difficult to believe unless you've been a patient of Dr.

Meyers, but waiting your turn in his office isn't like waiting anywhere

else. People visit in a warm, homey atmosphere created by Heather and

Ashland. There's none of the cold, impersonal feeling of the usual

waiting room. Most of us are in a long-term process and he's only here a

few days a month, so we become acquainted and share our progress.

Instead of having my life back, I have a new and better life, full of

gratitude, nice people and a whole new appreciation of spring and

freedom. And on that fine note, I'm going out to play.

Reach Inez Castor, a longtime Triplicate columnist, at .

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