How do you deal with the fear of falling?
I’m not talking about falling into poverty, or falling into sin, or falling out of touch with reality. No, I’m talking about the fear of falling — physically. You know, when your feet fly right out from underneath you and you land with a Thump on the ground.
Possibly injuring yourself. Seriously.
Ever since my last fall, I’ve had nightmares — and day-mares — about doing it again (only this time, much worse).
I see myself striding along, minding my own business, when out of nowhere — Boom! Down I go.
Elderly folks have ways of dealing with fall-prevention: canes, walkers, wheelchairs, and such. They take baby steps, hang onto stairway railings, proceed slowly and with caution.
People who live alone do, too. They can get one of those I’ve-fallen-and-I-can’t-get-up rescue devices, which will page the fire department or 9-1-1 for assistance.
Youngsters don’t fear falling; they’re resilient. When they fall, they just have a good cry and hop right back up. And if they do hurt themselves, why, they heal almost instantly.
Not so for us adults. Our healing takes weeks. Or months. And sometimes it requires a stay in a facility for physical therapy.
I was fortunate not to have to endure all that. But still, the fear persists, and now I know what Mom and her “old lady friends” mean when they express apprehension over tripping.
We take all the precautions possible — protecting our bodies, being mindful as we’re moving about — but accidents still happen. That’s why we call them “accidents,” right?
You’d think I’d be used to falling. After all, I’ve become quite adept at it.
But this time felt different. My eyes were opened to how awful falling really is, how frightening and annoying and frustrating and inconvenient it can be.
Living through that awful stumble once was enough. So why does my waking mind persist in reliving it, and how can I stop the memory train from rolling?
Any suggestions would be welcomed and appreciated!