Crash! A sound that I don’t like to hear in my home. It signals some kind of emergency, usually minor. Slick knocking over a half full glass of red wine to get to a water glass (because every cat knows glass water is better than bowl water.) Armand dropping a cup while emptying the dishwasher. Toad clearing a space on my desk so he can stretch out.

Sometimes not so minor. One of the challenges of aging is the loss of balance. Armand is going to be 90 this year and every once in a while, he falls. So far, we’ve been lucky because the falls have not resulted in any serious injury. Just bruises, skin tears, once a sprained wrist, and one thoroughly pissed off man.

“Crash” signals me to leap into action. Rags and Folex* to get the red wine out of the carpet and upholstery. Broom and dust pan for the shards scattered across the kitchen. Picking up the scattered files and notebooks. Those are the easy ones.

Not so easy are the falls. As I rush to respond I can’t help but think “Oh shit, how bad is this going to be?”  Getting him up is a struggle but Band-Aids, Neosporin, and sometimes an ice pack have been all the treatments required … so far.

Just now the crash came from the garage. No cats, no dishes in the garage. It must be a body. As I jump from my chair headed to scene I wonder, “What will I find?”

This time it was Armand’s daughter. Helping her dad with a repair project, she was vacuuming up the sanding dust, backed up and stumbled over a chair.

Once the damage was assessed all there was to deal with was a broken handle on the vacuum (another repair project for Armand) and a messy but minor scalp cut. All is calm again. Work in the garage has stopped and everyone is safely ensconced in the living room.

I can come off of alert, until the next crash.


*Folex has never failed me in getting the red out, and I’ve had a LOT of practice because the cats aren’t the only ones in this household who knock over wine glasses.