Change of Plans

Monday at noon I hoped to take advantage of a beautiful day, 73* and no wind, by riding my bike for lunch. I was about halfway home when Cyndi phoned to say, Berry I think I broke my wrist. Where are you?

I was working at the studio and …

I am on my way.

She wanted to tell me the whole story over the phone but I had already shifted into problem-solving mode and no longer listening for details. When I arrived at the studio there were three students for the next class helping Cyndi wait for me. She was resting her wrist on a yoga block and had a plastic bag of ice on top.

I drove her to the Emergency Room and dropped her off at the door since I was in the ambulance entrance and had to move my pickup. By the time I parked and walked inside they had Cyndi in a wheelchair and ready to move down the hall. We went straight to her room and they put her in a bed and started installing lots of tubes and wires. She wouldn’t let them cut her Midland Yoga Works t-shirt so she pulled it off with her one good hand. The doctor asked questions, they did x-rays, and he confirmed the end of her left radius bone was broken.

wristThey put Cyndi to sleep temporarily while the doctor manipulated the bone back into place. She appeared to be asleep but talked to the doctor all the way through the procedure. She kept telling him to be softer. Curiously, she also leaned forward toward me and said, Berry, I think you should buy that Specialized S-Works Tarmac Di1 road bike you showed me in the magazine.

I was surprised at her grasp of details in such a traumatic time as this; even more surprised that she no longer has any memory of the conversations with me or the doctor.

They released us to go home about 3:30 pm. We picked up her pain meds, went to Rosa’s for iced tea, and discussed how to get her car home from the studio. Since the studio is only about 3-1/2 miles from our house I decided to walk to the studio. Cyndi wanted to join me; so, left arm in a sling, she walked with me, maintaining her regular three-foot distance in front of me in case anyone wondered which of us was the faster walker.

We got her car and I drove to her satellite location so she could teach the beginner yoga class. I told her this was her chance to develop her own style, Riverdance Yoga, where you use your feet and not your arms.

Later, as I distributed our day’s story among the family, our daughter Katie wrote: This explains the pool of strong independent woman DNA I come from.

I would add that Katie has not only inherited that DNA, she’s passed it along to her own two daughters. Young Madden was visiting us last summer when she fell on the climbing bars at the playground across the street from our house. We found out later that she had a small hairline fracture in her collarbone, which we were totally unaware of. Even after falling she complained only of a sore shoulder when she took swimming lessons afterward. Tough girl.

Our son Byron wrote: So she does a handstand on top of Guadalupe Peak … no problem; but moving boxes … broken wrist. Mom doesn’t really do “ordinary.”

Our nephew Kevin once asked who was stronger, me or Aunt Cyndi? I said, It depends whether we are lifting weights or doing sit-ups and planks. Not only is she physically and psychologically strong, and tough, she is wide-open bright and creative. I am a lucky man.

After receiving a few eyebrow-raising texts about Cyndi’s decision to walk three miles straight out of the emergency room, I replied, it is our family tradition to not coddle each other, and not coddle ourselves.

Here’s the thing. It’s easier to be strong and tough and determined when you live with someone who believes in you all the way. Cyndi does. And I do. We are better, brighter, more creative, more loving, and happier, as a team, than either of us could even approach alone.

She will probably have surgery on her wrist next week. We are already changing plans for this spring to accommodate our new future. It should be exciting times ahead.


“I run in the path of Your commands, for You have set my heart free.” Psalm 119:32

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