For the past two weeks, I’ve been doing something really difficult. I’ve been doing nothing. My Type-A, multitasker, git-‘er-done-right-this-minute personality is thrown out of whack and in full rebellion, protesting vigorously to the nth degree as I recline on the couch – my newly reconstructed right foot propped on a pillow tower.

In the past 14 days, I’ve become one with my red sofa in my living room, otherwise known as “command central.” Surrounded by flowers, books, balls of yarn, glossy magazines and my favorite blankie, I valiantly attempt not to be too bossy as I direct, delegate and make demands.

I’m dependent on my sweetie, who plays “Slave Boy” to my Cleopatra, and who is smart enough to hide in his home office when he isn’t granting my every wish. I call out, “Mikey!” and he comes dutifully running while trying not to let on how exasperated he is. (I wanted a little bell to ring, thinking it would be easier to summon him, but he won’t let me have one.)

I guess I’m doing OK as I’ve seen his eyes pop out of his head on only one occasion. He insists Cleopatra have more than one person to boss around. Thankfully, my oldest daughter stands in on occasion, providing my particular long-suffering slave boy a reprieve that prevents him from committing murder.

It’s the hardest thing to let go and let others take care of me, even when I thought I had prepared myself to do exactly that. This necessary surgery, a bunionectomy “with a twist and extras thrown in for good measure,” is exactly what the podiatrist billed it as: “a big time commitment.” Never mind that there are stitches, pins, drugs and crutches involved. My only complaint is that I can’t go where I want to go and do what I want to do. Oh well.

That being said, I keep my whining to a minimum and focus on getting better. I allow myself to be lazy, knowing this is just a small inconvenience and that I’ll be up dancing the rumba, walking the beach and chasing the grandchildren come June. For now, I tell myself this experience is a good lesson to learn. I nap luxuriously on the sun-lit sofa between knitting and novels. I gaze at the red-painted toes peeking out from the bandages on my right foot and visualize it all happily healing.

A steady stream of company keeps the monotony at bay. I especially look forward to the grandchildren’s frequent visits. It took awhile for them to adjust to seeing “Grammie Red” sitting down and doing nothing. The two smallest ones, in a show of sincere concern over my boo-boo, sweetly kiss the air near my foot and offer a gentle pat, then an overly enthusiastic squeeze. Addison, who is nearly 5, snuggles in close enough for me to inspect every new freckle sprinkled like cinnamon across the bridge of his nose. With his bare feet propped near mine, he concocts one earnest question after another while 2-year-old Anna unceremoniously drops every doll and stuffed animal in the house into my lap. As she runs exuberantly between toy box and ottoman, I tuck my foot deeper into the protection of the pillow pile and give her the admonition, “Easy, cheesy!” more than once, which she ignores entirely.

I savor these moments while I can, knowing that it will be business as usual soon enough. Two weeks down, about eight more to go. Please don’t spend any time feeling sorry for me. However, you may want to say a prayer for Slave Boy.



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