2018 was a no ski year – as it turned out. An out of the blue health issue intervened and my plans unintentionally changed at the last minute.
Life had other plans.
One of my friends life mantras is “You’ve only got your health” or put another way, without your health many other things are not possible. So clearly the Universe was making that point and very strongly.
So it was that my January 2018 ski trip to Val d’Isere, France, was cancelled.
Due to a wonderful thing called travel insurance, the ensuing refund for said ski trip was duly banked – this will go towards next years trip; a positive outcome from a situation what at best was frustrating, unexpected and annoying and at worst scary, excruciating and worrying.
However, “this too shall pass” became my mantra. It was hard to believe at times during the 16 day period of my health scare.
And so 2018 continued. Plans came to fruition, surprises popped up and life was wonderful in many ways, which made up for my start of the year blip.
As my planned 2019 ski trips – yes I planned 2 trips to make the most of the season – to Lech Austria in January 2019 and Aspen, USA in March 2019 approached, my anticipation and excitement grew. A massive early season dump of snow in Austria signalled an amazing ski season; then the time came to fly.
As dusk greeted us after a very smooth and easy journey out to our chalet in the hamlet of Zug, our merry band of 6 skiers settled in to our chalet eagerly awaiting the sunshine forecast for our first day on the slopes.
Gear at the ready, we set off. It was a glorious day, cold but not bitter, with fabulous snow and empty slopes. A more perfect morning I couldn’t imagine.
After an obligatory mid morning heisse schokolade (hot chocolate) at a mountain hut, we skied for a while and then agreed our next rendezvous. Turn right at the big, wooden heart and there’s a hut where we can meet. We skied as a group of six yet went at different speeds and occasionally different routes.
I skied off and felt really good about my skiing, was completely wrapped up in my enjoyment of the weather, snow, cold fresh air and stunning scenery. I headed down left then decided to cut back right towards the big wooden heart and meet up with my friends.
And then again, life had other plans.
As I turned right to go through some soft snow, my skis stopped abruptly, almost as if there was a friction carpet beneath me. I catapulted forward over the front of my skis; one coming off the other still attached and face planted the snow. I was a little winded but initially felt OK and then I rolled over to get my other ski off and tried to get up. That wasn’t happening!
I started to feel nauseous and had a pain in my back. All fours was as far as I could get. As soon as I tried to straighten my back, the combo of pain and nausea became too much.
A few minutes of trying to get up proved a no go and then a local ski instructor came over to see if I was OK. “I will be in a minute”, I said. Wrong!
By that time, one of my friends had walked over to where I’d stopped and between her and the ski instructor, they decided I would need help getting off the mountain. So without going into the rest of the details, I was stretchered off the mountain, ambulanced to the local clinic, X-rayed, MRI’d and diagnosed. The verdict: “You’ve fractured the 7ththoracic vertebra in your back. You will need to be in a back brace for 8 weeks. The good news is it’s only 1 vertebra, it’s not impacting or impinging anything and you don’t need an operation”
Yet again life clearly had other plans.
I’ve no idea why 2 years in a row the Universe as chosen to change my plans through physical /health events. I can speculate, analyse, over analyse, ponder and ponder again. I might never truly know why. It is what it is.
What has both surprised and delighted me is my reaction to this recent event. I accepted it immediately, was grateful immediately and am already looking for ways to accelerate my healing. This would not have been a reaction that I would have predicted. So already there has been something good come of it. Do I have down days – you bet, but I know – this too shall pass.
Life is here to be lived and my one wild and precious life will continue to reveal a range of surprises. Whilst the plans I make may change I vow to
· Keep making plans and taking steps to do more of what I want to do and be
· Do less of the stuff I don’t want to do
· Be more accepting of any other plans the Universe may have for me without blame, regret or feeling like a victim.
The Universal intelligence that guides our lives is, I believe, infinitely wiser that we are. So let us do what we can and what we want AND be open to different events, situations and “opportunities” the Universe puts before us.
Time to plan my skiing trips for 2020 – unless the Universe has more exciting plans.