Posts Tagged ‘clumsy’

I feel terrible. My kids inherited my sense of grace and balance.

For some reason I was born with an off-kilter center of balance, which results in things like falling up stairs and walking into doorframes in my own house where the layout is as familiar as my own foot. While entertaining in general (at least for bystanders), this tends to cause problems with unexplained bruises, cuts, and scrapes. Not too big a problem for an adult, I have only been asked once or twice if I would like the number to a crisis center hotline or a women’s shelter. My predisposition for easily bruising doesn’t help.

In case you’re wondering, the particular day that prompted some well-meaning woman to think I was a battered wife found me sporting a tank top and shorts. This was shortly (as in a day, I believe) after moving to a new house, and the day of carrying boxes (balancing their corners on my leg as I opened a door or car trunk), pushing and lifting heavy furniture with hazardous protruding knobs and handles, and my typical incidents of tripping and running into things had left me with many small bruises on my thighs and upper arms, a skinned knee, and a big purple spot on my left forearm. Factor in the three band-aids for some minor cuts and scrapes, and I am sure I looked the perfect candidate for a social services poster.

Anyway, while I am used to my own lack of grace and balance, I wasn’t prepared for the apparent genetic factor in clumsiness. Evidently, you can pass the trait along to your children, and mine each got a healthy dose of it from me…poor little tykes.

A week ago, my daughter proved that her aspirations to be a famous ballerina were pipe dreams when she twirled into a metal pole (that she was fully aware of, she had been dancing around it for half an hour). She knocked herself silly for a few seconds, and put quite an impressive goose-egg on her forehead.  After a few tears and some ice, she was fine, and the mark is quickly fading.

Two days ago, her little brother was testing his running skills out on a handicapped ramp and almost rendered himself handicapped when his little body got a few steps ahead of his little legs. Down he went, creating himself an identical mark to his sister’s…in the same spot on his forehead.

Now I had two kids with big purple bumps over their right eyebrow, scraped knees (because their knees are always scraped), and mutinous expressions at Wal-Mart buying more band-aids and Neosporin. I tried to look unashamed and nonchalant as I checked out at the register, ignoring the alarmed expression on the cashier’s face as she stared from my kids to me, I’m sure wondering what I whacked them over the head with.

All the way to the truck, I mentally wrote out a script for the CPS workers and police that I was sure were about to show up.

I wondered if my own bruises would help my case or make it worse…