Thursday, March 11, 2010

Worthy Of Courage

(Not unlike the Cowardly Lion, we all--at some point--ask if we will ever find courage, and thus begin our worthiness quest......)

There is a specific reason I chose to write about courage on this date; one year ago today, at approximately 9:50 in the morning, I propelled myself across our garage, arms flailing, loads of art flying, my body bouncing off hard items and managed to become airborne, before landing at the front of the garage, directly on my right femur head, feeling the femoral neck break as it hit the concrete floor.
I was alone.
No cell phone near, nothing.
I laid in pain, shrieking as only a person severely injured can. It is that primal sound that comes from your gut. It is something you do not want to hear.
I had no choice but to roll myself over, use my left leg to stabilize the broken right hip, and crawl hand over hand the full length of the garage, back to my studio, up four steps, and reach the phone to call my husband. (and yes, this was all in excruciating pain....)
Was this courage? I don't know. People have described it as such but I prefer to think of it as some innate survival instinct. You don't know what you're capable of until it happens. Then the adrenalin kicks in.
Today, March 11, 2010, I feel courageous. I am WORTHY of saying that. I have survived one bad surgery, one great surgery, am on my third bout of physical therapy and am determined beyond belief that I am going to function like I did before. That is where the courage kicks in.
When you are down, when the people you thought were friends quickly scamper away like rats leaving the sinking ship, when you realize projects you have sunk your heart into are gone, when you finally PUT YOUR NEEDS FIRST---that is courage.
It is a difficult quality to pinpoint, and we are pretty well brainwashed into thinking of *heros* as courageous......but like the great garage fall, most of the time, it is gut instinct or training at play. I am not saying there is not bravery of a certain sort involved---but we are dealing with a different animal, though closely related.
You are worthy of the courage to stand and speak when something is not RIGHT; morally, ethically, politically. You are worthy of that because within you there is a voice that needs to be heard, and it takes a tremendous amount of courage to speak up and not back down.
Courage is reaching out to those who are normally forgotten, when you may be socially ostracized, when there is the very good chance that emotional hurt will be involved. Courage is digging deep to face personal issues head on and not sweep them under the carpet and not be swayed when you know what you must do.
Courage is that moment when you know you cannot live by foolish rules set down by others, and define your own set of life-rules, and then daily, stick to them.
It is the fire in the belly, the conviction in your soul, the temper you feel rise in your blood.
You are WORTHY of this.
Why?
Because then, you will be living your own life, and not one planned for you by someone else. You will be walking unwalked paths, gaining knowledge and strength each step of the way. You will be sturdy like the oak but bend like a willow when you must.......because sometimes courage involves silence. To think, to decide, to ponder how to proceed.
We are most worthy of these qualities because we are finite creatures, and with courage, we can leave a footprint that will be followed by others.
Yes, you can break away.
Yes, you can seek your dreams.
Yes, you can succeed....because you have gone forward courageously. You certainly are worth that....are you not?
My journey is not over. My courage failed when I was assigned this last therapy round. I felt sorry for myself, pondering the loss of a year of normal life, and at 50, it's a lot different than when you are younger. I wanted to retreat, to sit and withdraw, to try and forget how I had been in my *previous existance*.....the tall blonde woman in the tight swishy dress and high heels, the firebrand, the perpetual joker. I thought for sure it was all gone. How much more could I go through, emotionally and physically? Was this endless? Was the pain endless?
Then that devilish little fire-starter in my belly tuned up and reminded me I have places to go, things to do, stillettos to wear and many people left to annoy!
And so, I step forward again, courageously, to prove I am worthy of this. And I will be whole again.
Join me. Prove your worth.

Oh, by the way. No more flights across the garage....I think I'll walk the next time....   ;-)

Pax.

P.S. Home from PT, and I have worked so hard, I have only TWO MORE SESSIONS!!! And I did tell them I had been crawling on the sewing tables, up ladders, lifting bookcases........maybe they're sick of me.....LOL!!!

43 comments:

Silke said...

Oh, wow, Anne, such an inspiring post!! I am glad that you are finally on the mend from your fall a year ago! What a journey... I so agree with you, courage in me and as I observe it in others happens mostly in the small things that will - over time - make huge difference! That first step taken. The first word said. That first departure to a different life. I remember, when I started painting a year ago and my blog at the same time - in itself, those were not big things. In my life, though - monumental! And those two acts changed my life...

You are an inspiration, Anne!! Much love, Silke

Bunny said...

This is a hard act to follow. I think courage is also in the eye of the beholder. I may not be a couragous as some. Difficult when your life as a young person was beaten down or stiffled my courage for me is letting go. This is something I learned many years ago to servive. I know I am worthy. Have a wonderful day full of creative thoughts and ideas.

Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

You're my hero!

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi Silke,

I agree...those small steps are the hardest and most frightening of all---putting yourself out there as an artist. Your soul is bare.
But look what a wonderful payoff it has had for you!!!
And I am so glad you took that step!

XXOO!!
Anne

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi Bunny,

Yes, courage is a different thing for every single person, and most people know in their heart what it is they have, and how they can use it.
I think you have used yours very VERY well!!! ♥♥♥

XXOO!!
Anne....off to PT in a few.....

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Tristan,

(beam!!!!)
You're my hero too, because you helped me keep going when I started this blog, and I will never forget that. You helped me keep going on something that has turned into a wondeful venture and I am so thankful for it.
I always hope I am WORTHY of your friendship!!!

XXOO!!
Anne

Vicki Miles ~8-) said...

Thought provoking series. I know I am courageous. I don't see any other choice, at least not at this time.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Vicki, you are DAMNED COURAGEOUS!!!
And I'm glad to call you a friend---you are the poster girl for strength! ♥♥♥

XXOO!!
Anne

Go here to read about Vicki.....
http://justme-vicki.blogspot.com/

Janet Happy Girl said...

I loved this post. I have to say that after two back surgeries, two hand surgeries, a foot surgery and an inner ear surgery all since 2001 I HAVE found out who my friends are. It's not the number of friends you have but the quality of the friendship. There has been lots of disappointment along the way, but, I am stronger for it all emotionally. There are two kinds of friends: 1...good time friends and 2...genuine friends. I prefer the latter. I think you are amazing and I invision you crawling in agony across the garage up the steps to get to the phone. It is amazing what we will do when we have to...that will to survive that is deep within us. I surely hope you continue to heal and be the stronger (both physically and emotionally) for it.

Janet Ghio said...

What a great post about courage and being worthy. You are an excellent writer and a courageous woman.

*Ulrike* said...

That definitely hit home! Thanks for the reminder!

Deborah said...

I LOVE THIS!!! Write us a book, please and thank you.

"I have stillettos to wear and many people left to annoy!"

Excellent goals, Anne!

You are more than worthy!
**kisskiss** Deb

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi Janet H.G.!
(have another Janet right below you!!)
Holy cow...that many surgeries in one year; my heart almost stopped reading that. And yes, you DO find out really quick who you have as friends.
It always amazes me how people melt away when someone gets hurt or ill---I guess I look at it different from working at a Drs office, and for caring for elderly relatives, to the end.

Glad that you are doing good---and I found out today OFFICIALLY--ONE WEEK of PT left!!!

Take care!

XXOO!!
Anne

Jan said...

Another great, thought provoking post, Anne. Not that you would want to, but you could write a good book on courage and creativity. Or even just submit some articles to the magazines. I don't suppose it pays well enough to bother, you have more important things to do that you would enjoy better. Yeah, like wearing the stilettos, etc! What a year it has been. Glad you are past the worst of it.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi Janet G.!

Thanks....I have not written in years. The blog has forced me to revisit things I used to do and somehow wandered from. I do enjoy hammering words!
I don't know about being courageous; I am thinking very bullheaded is probably closer! ;)

XXOO!!
Anne

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi Ulrike!

I think, for everyone, we all need reminers now and then.
I need LOTS of reminders, and need them frequently! LOL!!!
HAve a good one!

XXOO!!
Anne

Leslie said...

If I were king of the fo-rrr-esssst! Wow, what an amazing post to read first thing. Thank you for your words. They are to live by.

Marilyn said...

Sorry so late today....Roadrunner was on the "fritz" all morning!!
****
We all find courage when we least expect it....Courage for me is telling an in-law to leave & NEVER darken my door after I was told "You took my son so I have taken yours"!! Im sorry but WTH....The courage was for me NOT to inflict bodily harm on this person!!
Love the post.....Love You !!
Marilyn

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Deb!

We need T-shirts with the phrase:

"I have stillettos to wear and many people left to annoy!"

---or---

"I have hair bleach and I KNOW how to use it!"

You know, I probably could write a book...but am unsure who would want to publish it! LOL!!!
HAve a great day!

XXOO!!
Anne

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Jan, I need to write the book to get the royalties to get more high heels!!! LOL!!
But yes, getting back in my stilettos is a goal. It may seem foolish or vain, but the real reason is I will be back to ME....what I was before.
I did however, have to promise my therapist that I would start with SMALL HEELS first, as he grimmaced!

XXOO!!
Anne

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Leslie!

I loved that part in TWOO when he was singing that!!! I love the movie......watched it as a kid and was scared to death of those flying monkeys! HA!
Glad there was blog fodder here for you to enjoy.... ;)

XXOO!!
Anne

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Marilyn,

Yes, courage is defined by the circumstance and moment. It is different for all of us, by life experience, from day to day.
And believe me, I have been in the same place of having to NOT whup a relative! Ai-yi-yi.....we get wiser and stronger with age.
Love you too---hope that next week hurries and gets DONE for you, and you don't have to WHUP a doctor!

XXOO!!
Anne

Deborah said...

HA! Excellent, Anne! I want one of each, actually 7 of each and they shall become my uniform.

"I have stillettos to wear and people to annoy!"


"I have hair bleach and I KNOW how to use it!"

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Deb, I bet we could make those and sell them on Zazzle!!!
Hmmmmmmm......I have a bookshelf to put together this afternoon, then some designing??? HAHAHAHA!!!
Hey, it's my motto...I'm not ashamed to admit it!

XXOO!!
Anne

audrey said...

Hi Anne! Another great post! In this day and age, we all need courage just to survive all the crap! And then there is all the other stuff ~ courage to love and be loved, courage to get through illnesses and help others through ills. You pretty much covered it all and I must say you are ONE COURAGEOUS LADY!! I am proud to be your friend.
Only 2 more sessions of PT proves that you had the will and the courage to get yourself back to where you wanted to be. Way to go Anne!
♥ audrey

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Audrey,

Yes, this is an odd age in which we live. Actually, some of that will be in tomorrow's post, but I agree that courage is defined on so many levels.....
I must say I am very happy to be near the end of PT, not because I dislike the work and the people are exceptionally kind and fun, but I just want my creative time back, and to clear tasks off my overflowing table!
And maybe....just maybe.....sleep in a bit! ;)
Nah, probably not the last one! LOL!!

XXOO!!
Anne

Elena said...

Oh Anne! No more flying solo! So glad to hear you are on a positive mending track now and healing much better. Love your post. So encouraging. And thanks for your great comment to my post today. My bike (the one I really ride) is a Harley Dyna Lowrider in Dragonfly green. It's the one in my sidebar. I love it but some days I just don't feel like I'm worthy and should get on that bouncy one. Hee hee~

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Elena.....
Oh yeah, you deserve the Harley!!! (just save the other pic for humor!!! I thought I would POP!!!)
I always wanted a Harley but DH set his foot down, and considering some of my adventures, he probably was right.....maybe......I'm not convinced!
No go face the world, being the artist/biker chick and don't let anything stand in your way!

XXOO!!
Anne

Jan said...

I forgot to say, "Happy Anniversary!"
Not the sort of anniversary worth celebrating. Except for having survived it.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Thank you!!!! LOL!! It is my anniversary of stepping forward, back into my life!
So it's all good! (other than taking the hide off my thumb with the ahmmer, putting a bookshelf together....that, I could have done without...)

XXOO!!
Anne

chickory said...

happy anniversary! enjoyed this post. my dad gave me a big compliment at his birthday party where he called each child up and said something nice...for me he said he admired my courage...to live in the woods, say damn the torpedos and live how i wanted regardless what others said. meant the world to me.

ive had two neck surgeries and i understand what you are saying. i had a horse crash similar to christopher reeve -my surgeon has me put together with titanium now...but the potential for injury again is great. therefore, i postpone nothing if possible. i try to live my dream everyday. and damn the torpedos!

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Chickory,

WOW. You girls are blowing me away with recounting tales of great courage! You are definitely WORTHY, and for all of us, every day is a chance to live in our own manner and love our abilities.
Thank you for sharing your story, and yes, Damn the Torpedos!

XXOO!!
Anne

Anna Rosa Designs said...

Hey there my courageous friend,
Oh dear, that would have been a terrible ordeal for you to go through after thinking you could fly across the garage.
I'm sooo glad you've made it through and nearly to the end of all your drama's (only two sessions to go) yippee!

Ah, I know what you mean about friends being there for you.
Three years ago I broke my leg, got an infection, then got three blood clots in my leg and I thought I was going to die.
My bestest friend, my dear hubby, took nearly three months off work to nurse me, cook, clean and raise our boys. (lucky we have our own business)
Hm, yes, I now know who I can count on.
Have a great day,
Hugs,
Anna

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Anna Rosa,

As I said, the friends pare down quickly...the rats fleeing the ship! ;)
My DH was here for me too---the poor man was a bit overwhelmed with things--I'm sure yours was too! Thank heavens we were blessed with a couple of *good ones*.
And I am glad that your medical situation took and upswing and you're here to blog!!!
Take care!

XXOO!!
Anne

Magpie's Mumblings said...

These posts just keep getting better and better Anne. I haven't had a chance (yet) to go back and read your blog from the beginning so I hadn't heard what exactly happened when you injured yourself. All I can say is wow...YOU are definitely courageous to get yourself to help and then deal with what has happened since.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Well M.A. I'll tell you the beginning posts are dry and not worth the time. I did, however, on the first hospital visit coerce a nurse to get me a computer with an internet hook up (yep, doped on morphine!) so I could let my followers know why I would not be posting for a while! LOL!!!
That's the truth.....last year, probably March 12th!!!
Leave it to me..... ;)

XXOO!!
Anne

tallboy said...

Keep up the great work. Loved the comments and encourage you to keep the faith in all ways--yourself included. Blessings always,

Mary Helen-Art Saves Lives said...

Anne this post made me cry...I never knew how the break began and by gosh you have demonstrated Courage with the capital "C". Your words are powerful and so affirming to us all. Follow your bliss and dance your heart's desire...You are one in a million and I am so grateful to have your honest words entering my heart. Imagine and Live in Peace, Mary Helen Fernandez Stewart

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Tallboy,

Long time no hear!!!
You know I keep the faith---always. It's always there! It's just sometimes the human aspect pops up and becomes a nuisance......I mash it into submission quickly with my Doc Martens... :D
Take care; hope to see you sometime soon!

Pax!!!
Anne

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Mary Helen, don;t cry!!!! That whole day was more like a clip out of the Three Stooges (I'm not sure if I was Curly or Moe on that one, but I'm thinking Moe...LOL!!!)
I am glad theat the posts have produced something of worth...no pun intended on that!
(((hugs!!))) and take care!

XXOO!!
Anne

Janet Happy Girl said...

Ann, I have to make a correction...all those surgeries we SINCE 2001 to present. I'm sorry if I wasn't clear. Congrats on one more week of physical therapy. I, too, had lots of physical therapy. Now I am in pain management for chronic neck and back pain. I have two outpatient procedures next month on my neck..the 15th and the 22nd. It is bittersweet because although I hate going through it(no pain meds or anesthia) once it is done it gives me up to 6 mths of being pain free. Last month I had the same procedure on my back. We do what we have to do. So, I know and i hear ya, regarding the relief of being done with physical therapy. Have a happy day...

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Janet, it does not matter if it was within a year or more---that is a LOT of work on the body, and still having more done too.
You're right; we adjust and push forward. I sinserely hope for you that everything goes well with the upcoming proceedures and that you are back to functioning good and soon!
Take care!!!

XXOO!!
Anne

freebird said...

I just found your blog after following a link from Christine's Beadworks. I love it. I love your pictures and your writing (which I have only read a part). I have to take some time here and read more.

I have not had too many occasions to be tested for my courage but I applaud those who are courageous in their everyday lives. Sometimes getting through a day is harder than being brave on a battlefront. It just depends on what the person is having to face and choose. I just want to thank you for what you are writing here. Obviously you are striking a chord with readers and doing a fine job of sending ripples out into the pond.

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