HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN: How was YOUR weekend? Huh. Mine had its ups and downs…and in the end, I learned something from Tom Brady.
Let’s start on Friday. Ordinary fun Friday, out to dinner with pals. Jonathan and I were hustling down Moody Street in Waltham, me talking intently about something, and wham. I mean: WHAM. I tripped on a brick of some kind in the sidewalk, and tumbled--knee, wrist, shoulder, face--on the pavement.
(And no, I wasn’t wearing heels—I had on flat boots! And thing is—if I’d been wearing heels, I’d have been walking more carefully.)
Anyway, as my husband said so descriptively, “Honey, you went down like a sack if potatoes.”
So there I was on the cold hard pavement, checking my teeth, checking my nose, checking my hair, feeling blood on my fingers. Two passers-by stop to help. Was I okay? I…was. But wow, everything hurt.
Someone called 911. The police came. The ambulance came. The firefighters came. The furniture store proprietor brought me inside and I sat down, and took stock. Jonathan ran to get ice from a restaurant. I was terrified, and unnerved, but fine. The EMTs assessment: “Wow, ma’am. You are going to have some shiner!
Lovely. But I was absolutely lucky. It could have been so much worse!
So I spent this weekend using ice packs, massaging in arnica, and taking arnica pills and Advil. I slept sitting up so it didn’t get more swollen. May I just say? It looked terrible. Grotesque. Horror movie city. Red, purple and blue. Really really swollen.
But there’s the thing. My revisions are due. And I only have three weeks. And it is a big job. (Revisions when you’re healthy are difficult enough, right?) Holding a package of iced peas to my face, I tried to sit at the computer, read my manuscript, assess and revise and rewrite. It was a bit hard to think, since I was still...rattled. I could not give up. I HAD to work.
I was not being successful, I knew it. But if I took a nap, as I longed to do, all that time would be lost. I kept at it. I made progress, but not as much as I might have if I hadn’t been on the injured list.
Sunday evening, I watched the Super Bowl. We live in Boston, so it was must-see. And early on, it looked like the Patriots were toast. Here's how Tom looked at one point.
Here’s how I looked watching. Under a blanket. I could not stand it.
You and me, Tom Brady, I thought. Sometimes things don’t go as planned. (I was yes, equating my book with the Super Bowl, but we all have out goals.)
And then, after three quarters, it became clear Tom was not going to give up. He steeled himself, and his team. He went for it even harder.
At that moment, somehow I got a boost of Brady optimism and determination. I could DO these revisions. It would work. Nothing important or valuable is easy.
I’m playing injured, but it won’t be for long. If Tom can do it, I can do it.
(He wears shoulder pads and a face mask, though.)
When I finish, and I will, I won’t get the Lombardi trophy. But I will be just as happy as the team.
How was your weekend?