Average Jane

He will ride again

The last hour of my drive back from Philadelphia is a blur. The fact I made it home at all is a feat.

I don’t like writing about people I know when I also know they read this blog. But I need to say this. I hope it’s ok.

The call came from K. I knew it had to be something important because calls from K are usually plan oriented, not really “hey, what’s up?” She had news. My most recent Ex had been in a motorcycle accident in Boston. “Pretty messed up” was what I remember her saying, although to be honest I don’t remember much.

Car. Bike. Broken. Vertebrae. Hand. Hospital. Sister. Mother.

After a brief, disjointed conversation we hung up. I called his phone knowing someone would answer. I hoped it wouldn’t be him. His sister picked up and I introduced myself as “His friend Jane.” It as simpler that way. I was next on the list for her to call.

MRI. Surgery. Back. Arm. Nerve damage. Hospital. Rehab. Months.

We hung up. I started crying. Big tears. Ugly tears. Tears that blended with the rain pouring down as I made my way down 95. I called my mom. I called my dad. I called E and A and E again. I started planning a trip to Boston. I started planning it all in my mind but my thoughts were even clouded by the tears.

I could see him lying in his hospital bed, scared. But laughing. Because that’s what he does. He’s a terribly patient.

I’m sick. Come up to Boston to take care of me.” No – I can’t. I have Passover with the Family in Philly. “Oh, come on! I’ll come to Philly then.” No – You can’t. I won’t have time to see you. “Fine. Maybe I’ll take a ride this weekend to clear my mind. It’s going to be beautiful.” Yes! You need it. Go ride. You’ll feel better.

A blurry hour later I arrived home. I checked my e-mail to see if there was news. I check facebook to see if there are updates. His status message broke my heart:

“…is going for a ride…maybe go see the ocean!”

I am a do-er, a plan-er, a fix-er, a mother-er. I can do none of that. Not from here. The Cultural Contributor told me not to go. To wait. He has who he needs now. He’ll need me more later. He is the vinegar to my oil. We work so well together if you shake up the relationship enough. He has been a good friend, a dear friend, a best friend. If it were me in the hospital, he’d be here by now. I know he would. He’s that kind of guy.

I know, however, that the CC is right. Now, he’ll be too knocked out to know — too drugged up to care. I will be there for him later, when the novelty of his condition has worn off and his new friends go back to their lives. I will be there when he needs me most. Or I’ll be there tomorrow if I get that call.

Every time life knocked him down, always got back up. Kicking and screaming most of the time, but he always rose above. And this time, too, he will rise again. But this time… this time he’ll ride again. I know he will. He has to.


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  1. * ivan says:

    Always bad luck these accidents, sometimes worse (what’s after “bad”?), but at the same time, it actualizes, for people who care for you, the fact that one is not eternal, it revives the idea of the morta (there’s an ant on my keyboard) lity of your loved ones, and hopefully can change the way you are with them, for the best, if you manage to deal with this idea rightfully (rightfully?).

    You almost got me to wish I was in an accident, this man’s lucky to have friends like you.

    | Reply Posted 10 years ago
  2. * Beth says:

    I’m so sorry to hear about your friend. I will keep him, you, and his family in my thoughts and prayers. He’s lucky to have you for his friend.

    | Reply Posted 10 years ago
  3. * lostonthestreet says:

    Hope your friend recovers from the accident.And keep the faith.

    | Reply Posted 10 years ago
  4. * K says:

    I am so glad that YOU made it home. I wished when I’d hung up that I’d known you were driving when I told you, but I guess I couldn’t have NOT told you at that point. Like you, I know he’ll be ok in the end – he’s unstoppable. And maybe, after a while, he’ll realize that he’s more loved by us all than he ever knew. I hope so.

    | Reply Posted 10 years ago

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