Shakespeare’s mistress


“My mistress, when she walks, treads upon the ground.” – Shakespeare, Sonnet 130

I don’t so much ‘tread’ as trip over my own feet.

Yes, once more I have managed to fall head over heels not in love, but in sheer, unadulterated clumsiness.

If I didn’t know better, I’d think I were pregnant.

Don’t laugh, I knew I was pregnant with my daughter when I flung, in slow motion, a glass of orange juice over a client.

This time I know better. It’s the third fall in three months.

After 10 years of bliss, the next vertebrae in my spine is crumbling into dust trapping my sciatic nerve. Don’t feel stupid if you don’t know what this nerve is, I didn’t either until the first time this happened.

Basically, my left leg is numb. So, I don’t always feel the ground quite as intimately as I should. I can hop on coals in other words and not feel a spark.

This time my epic, not quite as graceful as a swan dive, ended up with me looking like I did a round with Mike Tyson, limping like Hop-along Cassidy (again) and with concussion.

I balanced like a ballerina en pointe as I gracefully placed my son’s boat into the crystal, cold water of Victoria Lake.

I sprung as graceful as a gazelle and then didn’t. I managed to land half in and half out of the water.

Hit my head on the only concrete block along an expanse of soft mud.

Snap my glasses in two.

Split my lip.

Bleed like a stuck pig.

Bruise every point of my body.

Rend into shattered rags the fragile cloth of dignity.

And when does this all happen?

When I’m about to jump on a plane and head to the bloody beach.

That’s when.