Long ago we started this saying in our house, “No blood. No sympathy.” Pretty self-explanatory right? If you fall down and break your crown you better have a rip somewhere in your outer covering and be leaking life giving red liquid out of that opening if you want attention that will led to ice cream and bandages, not necessarily in that order. If not, just keep working. For more years than I can count on all my fingers and toes we have only stopped working to aid and give sympathy if there is blood involved. So far that has worked out fairly well—until now.

Life has a way of getting in the way of life. Aches and pains are developing upon doing regular things. As recently as this morning I found I needed the edge of a chair and the back of the couch to get up off the floor after getting down to get a wayward soda bottle that had skittered under the couch after a movie and popcorn fest last night. Not that I didn’t want to get it picked up last night, I just-uh-forgot. Ya, I’m going with that–I forgot.

I didn’t get sympathy when my knees crackled under the weight of my vertebra popping back and straining arms because there is no hole in me, leaking life sustaining blood. But I deserve some type of comment as to the rigors I am going through. After all I got all the way down on the floor, reaching way under the couch to pick up something that only I knew was there. That soda bottle could have stayed there until we moved away and the couch had to be moved out. Kind of like the only reason anyone cleans under a stove or refrigerator is because it quits working and gets replaced by a new one, then you find that quarter that rolled under it some years ago. I didn’t wait until the couch needed to be moved. Again, I got all the way down on the floor and picked up that dang soda bottle—I want my sympathy!

But it is not that easy to change a way of doing things. You can’t, as they say, change horses in mid-stream. Why can’t you? I have no idea. Seems like it would be an easy thing to do to change horses mid-stream. Just get off of one and onto another. I am sure that there is some cowboy that can explain why this cannot be done, or maybe just why it is a bad idea to try it. Does the horse not want to stop in the stream? Has it something to do with not getting your boots wet? Just why can’t you change horses mid-stream? Well there I go sauntering off the path again…

Apparently there is a difference in giving sympathy and offering a small chuckle at someone’s distress. The chuckle period comes after an undetermined amount of time has passed and it seems appropriate to chuckle when you tell the story of falling down and breaking your crown in a most unusual way. And we all have some type of story about some incident that ended in perhaps a visit to the ER—but with a good outcome. Nope I’m not going to tell a tale of an ER visit. Rather I want to tell this.

I know I am not a graceful swan. I am more of a duck. I can get from here to there but sometimes it’s not easy to watch me flop my size tens along. So in saying that I have size tens you might think I have a good sturdy base at the base of myself. Not always. One fine day when the farm was still new to me, the feedlot that was on our farm was calling to me to be explored. It was summer. There were no cattle in sight so I felt fearless to climb the wooden fences. Yes, I did swing on the gates. That’s a big NO NO to those who have to fix the gates after we gate swingers swing on them. (But in my defense, it is really fun to swing on the end of a sixteen foot long gate. Wheeeee!)

So towards the end of my exploration I scampered up the side of the cattle chute and right to the end of the landing where—a board broke off the end creating a hole in the landing bigger than my size tens could catch and I fell off the chute and landed on a dried cow pie. I took inventory of all my appendages; they all still worked. I thanked the Lord the cow pie was dry. And as I laid there, alone, I wondered—actually I didn’t wonder anything. I just got up and went on, as I knew, since there was no blood I would get no sympathy.

Trina lives in Eureka. Her book ITY BITS can be found on Kindle. Share your thoughts and opinions with her at itybytrina@yahoo.com.