I found out today that my son has a fractured shoulder. He's had it for awhile--over a month--but we didn't know it was fractured until today. He had a bad spill on his mountain bike a few days before our trip to Washington; he scraped up his face and arms pretty severely, but didn't seem to have any other injuries. His shoulder started hurting several days into our trip, the same time he developed a fever of 104. We took him to an urgent care center--the doctor there said that the fever and the shoulder pain were most likely viral--the virus had probably lodged in his muscles, she said. We gave him ibuprofen and waited for it to get better. And it did, although his shoulder has been sporadically hurting since then--a sign that it was most likely not a virus. Lately, his shoulder started hurting even more, so I finally scheduled an appointment with my husband's orthopedic surgeon. I should have done that a long time ago, I realize now. I'm kicking myself about this. Although I guess there wasn't anything we really could have done. The bone is healing nicely on its own. But I just feel so horrible knowing that my son has been walking around with a fractured shoulder--a shoulder that formed in my own body!--and we had no clue.
The body is so much more vulnerable than we'd like to believe. I had a weird body thing happen a few days ago, myself. I woke up on Saturday morning with strange red blotches under my eyebrows. It looked as if someone had dotted the tops of my eyelids, and part of the area under my eyes, with a red pen. I did some nervous web searching, and found that the most likely candidate was burst blood vessels--they usually happen around the eyes after violent coughing or vomiting. Fortunately, I had done neither of those, but I had done some handstands the night before (sometimes I just get an urge to do handstands) and I think that was the culprit. Amazing how something like a simple handstand can cause mayhem!
I think the vulnerability and unpredictability of the body make it all the more beautiful, all the more worthy of our appreciation and respect. We're in these bodies for such a short time--we might as well love them tenderly and passionately, splotches and fractures and all.