The phone broke the silence at 1.30 this morning. It is the sound you dread in the early hours of the morning when someone you love is at risk. We were bringing Wise Woman home today. Yes, she was frail. Yes, we had big battles ahead. But we were ready.
And at 1.30am the worst living issue we could face came roaring into reality. She had fallen. At first the garbled message led me to believe she had broken her leg and her kneecap. Jumped in the shower (because I needed to), jumped in the car and DROVE like hell. It is an hour to the hospital and I know the road inside out after seven weeks of daily driving. Once there I tracked her through the hospital from rehab to emergency to ward. And found my fragile, tiny mother swaddled in blankets, scared, in pain, vulnerable. With a fractured hip. Our worst living nightmare due to the state of her bones.
This time I cannot rant and scream at THEM. This time it was a foolish choice by her to pick up something because of her dignity, to put herself at risk due to her pride, to lose the gamble so tragically. I understand why, I know the what for's, as angry as I was at first it has now drizzled down to sadness and compassion.
In the wee hours of first light I sat in my car and sobbed. People walked past watching, understanding, for where else but the carpark of a hospital would we cry so freely? Then I did what she has always taught me. Suck it up, get on with it. WW has always had the belief where there is life there is hope, where there is hope there is no excuse to chuck in the towel. Plenty of time for tears when the battle is lost, never when there is a lull in the gunfire whilst the enemy reloads.
And so I am loaded back up. Placing one foot in front of the other and remembering to breathe. Most of the time. Kick me when I forget. Please.
In Silence and in Sound: Autistics Do Not Benefit From Presumptions of Deficit - [image: Hush!!] *Photo: Ian Chen | Flickr / Creative Commons* [image: Close-up black-and-white photo of a young East Asian child, with one finger over thei...
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