My mom broke her leg on a beautiful day at our home in Aldie. I don’t recall how old I was, but I must have been at least six because it happened when she stepped in a hole while kicking a soccer ball. We didn’t have a soccer ball before about 1977.
When it happened, I was inside watching Speed Racer on our little black and white tv. Mom limped up to the door to tell me she was hurt, and Dad drove us all to the hospital when he got home shortly after that.
It’s a vague memory for me, but I remember clearly that I felt guilty. In fact, I still feel guilty thinking about it. What I don’t know is why. Was it that I felt like I should have been out there with her and could have somehow prevented it?
Or did I just feel guilty that I was inside watching television on a nice day?
That bothered me for some reason, even at six years old in 1977, long before it became an issue in the news. Today, you hear it all the time; kids are indoors in front of screens when they should be playing outside. It’s always bothered me with my own kids.
I’ll never know for sure what gave me that guilty feeling, but I do know that my mom made sure we spent time outside and that she was an active participant. And I know that I wish I’d been outside with her that day, at least to help her up when she stepped in that hole.