Things change in instant, we know, we know. It's a platitude by now. Live every day like it was your last, because you never know what the next moment will bring. Seize the moment. Etcetera, etcetera.
Sure, every once in a while, in a particularly somber mood, after a particularly depressing song, perhaps a little too much wine, or maybe after reading one too many headlines, we set ourselves to really considering this notion.
Or maybe after one of those rushing moments. When the dish on the stove catches on fire, and you don't notice right away. When the brakes grab just in time. When you catch yourself just before falling. In those hazy moments just after the overwhelming sensations start fading, you can't help but thing how everything could have changed right there. But it didn't.
Yet sometimes it does.
Valentine's Day this year was perhaps not very romantic, but was what one would call a very good day, nonetheless. It was one of those days where you walk out of the house planning to return by lunch time, but instead end up following a series of random strings, and return home at midnight to that pile of laundry you really meant to do.
And, as such, our day went like: Pre-planned serious event! Lunch with Julie! Bilodeau wins gold medal! Drinks! Patriotism! More drinks! More sports! Anisa calls! Gallavanting through the countless celebrators in the streets! Drinks and dinner with Anisa and crew! More sports! Sophie calls! Go see Sophie's brother's band! More drinks! Oh shit, it's midnight and we have to work tomorrow! Go home.
Except the next day, we get an email. Anisa, who at the last minute decided not to come see Sophie's brother's band, has been hit by a car.
Not a car, actually, but rather a Hummer. A Hummer driven by a guy who'd had too much to drink and decided to fly through a crosswalk at high speeds without checking to see who might be walking across said crosswalk.
Seemingly, she was lucky. Sure she'd spent 13 hours in the ER in crippling pain, undergone massive reconstructive surgery on a heel that was nearly shattered to bits, a week in the hospital, still can't work, needs a walker to negotiate her apartment and a wheelchair to go more than a block. That's not too bad when one goes flying through the air after being hit head on by a Hummer, right?
This Sunday night, we went out to watch the hockey game. Anisa, as always, was rolling with the punches, joking about how her walker would help her pick up men. We began talking about her next doctor's appointment, as the last had given her very little idea about likely prognosis. She spoke of trying to go in with as little expectations as possible, as there was still a chance that despite following all the right steps, the bones in her foot may die. Someone asked about worst case scenario. She said the doctors refuse to tell her, stating that they will "deal with that if the time comes".
I assume worst case means that she will never walk without crutches again.
Later, when she goes out for a cigarette, the Duke murmurs to me "You know what worst case scenario is, right?"
I shake my head.
He had spoken to a friend of his with a PhD in nursing. "If the bone death is really bad, they may have to amputate her foot. I don't think she has any idea it's even a possibility."
So there's what a moment can do. It can seize a 26 year old woman away from an entirely average day, toss her into the air, and leave her in danger of losing her foot.