I was doing my laundry last week. While hanging my underwear on the hand dryer, I noticed the rips that must have happened over time, the time spent quietly during the pandemic. Everything was so comfortable, so I never stopped to examine them. And comfort has been key. Though comfort still matters, I’ll take my underwear without rips.
While I was choosing my new briefs, which I was thrilled to find on sale, I was thinking of the last time tattered undies played a role in my life. It was 25 years ago. I was walking to work, crossing the street when a cab turned the corner without looking. He hit me and lifted me onto his bumper until he stopped suddenly, and I slid down onto the cold street.
An ambulance came and checked on me. I didn’t know I was in shock, but I wouldn’t let them take me to the hospital. I insisted I’d go to my doctor’s office. I went, but only after I returned home to call work. This was before everyone had cell phones. After I made that call, I searched through my undergarment drawer to find at least one pair that was worthy of a doctor’s visit. I was not putting on an examining gown with torn granny panties. Since that time, I’ve made it a point to have accident-ready underwear. I see it as a preventative measure.
The truth is I learned a lot more than to avoid torn clothing. The accident, and the months following really taught me to take care of myself in a more conscious way. The first steps were to heal from the accident. Thanks to good physical therapists, medical massage therapists, an acupuncturist, medical specialists, and my psychotherapist, I got through the pain to other side. I was lucky. Not only did I have good insurance, I had good care.
There was so much more to learn. Being prepared for the unexpected was not part of my toolbox. Through the years I’ve learned patience. I learned how to pivot when needed. Being flexible, even if I inwardly resist change, has been invaluable. It took the pandemic to teach me to slow down. Slowing down helps when the world turns upside down. It even helps as the world, step by step, turns back around, with an unfamiliar view.
For now, getting new underwear is a fresh start in this changing world.
- Slow Down. It seems like there’s always something to get done because there usually is. But slowing down gives us a perspective that we don’t get when we’re speeding ahead.
- Ask yourself what act of kindness will help you prepare for the unexpected. Change is a given. Having patience and kindness for ourselves when we face the unknown brings a bit of peace when we may be inclined to stress.
- If you’re able, indulge in a new pair of underwear. And, throw out one that is no longer comfortable for you.