The shopping cart ricocheted and bounced off the sides of the escalator at Target. I thought I was putting the buggy on the chain ramp that glides beside as you descend down the stairs. It was too late. As the cart tumbled down, yogurt spattered the stairs and milk sprayed the handrails. Luckily, no one was on the escalator down below or I would have been on the nightly news! Target security was on me lickedy split at the bottom, “asking what is wrong,” and “are you ok?” In a state of what must have been shock, I actually started picking up the yogurt and put the dripping milk carton back in my runaway cart, like I was going to purchase this stuff! I was pretty shaken, called my hubby who took me to get a CAT Scan, MRI, the works – it all showed that I am the epitome of health. Great, what now? The dizziness continued and put me on my back for a month. I couldn’t drive and needed to lie flat so that I didn’t throw up.
It seems there are more people spinning out of control than I realized. Oprah has an article about vertigo in this month’s issue. There are millions of people dealing with being dizzy. One gal had vertigo for 18 months and, like me, got it in check by reducing her sodium intake. Who knew a little salt could make you throw a shopping cart down an escalator? The doctors have found that Valium also helps. I was reluctant to take it because I didn't want to end up in the Valley of the Dolls but when you've fallen and you can't get up, you'll try anything (even the clapper). Who knows, I thought, maybe I'll reinvent myself like Mary-Louis Parker on "Weeds" and push dolls. Naaah, I have two little kids and they take up a lot of time.
The map in the mall is a great metaphor for me. “YOU ARE HERE” During my horizontal month, oodles of people called to check on me, brought meals, babysat my kiddies, ran errands, drove me to the doctor and had Ginko tea parties with me. And that month, my hubby won “the better or worse” award. I am so grateful. The vertigo event grounded me and helped me realize that I should do all the fun things burbanites do. Now, I’m taking tennis lessons and golf lessons and we’re in a dinner party club. When I run under cherry blossom trees, I appreciate the petals that drop on the path. I teach my daughter how to enjoy a honeysuckle on our walk to preschool. I treasure the “crystal” (rock) my son gave me at the bus stop. I kiss my husband like he’s my boyfriend. I AM HERE, in the burbs, and it’s a good thing I got my head examined.