“Do not run along the woodsy path with new prescription sunglasses,” I told myself, too late, as my face accelerated toward the hard, shadowy asphalt. My palms hit first. “Surrender,” I thought. Twisting to the left, I landed on my forearm, then my upper thigh, and rolled to a carpet of crunchy sticks, unharmed.
The secret is knowing how to fall. By all means, reach out for help if you can get it. You are falling! If no help is available, lighten up on pride and embarrassment, surrender to gravity, and shift momentum. You have to roll. Hundreds of times I’ve tripped over my own feet, due to a minor birth defect, which means this method is proven. I’ve rolled on grass, dirt, asphalt, the slick tile of the mall. After every untimely episode, I hop up, give mental thanks for a safe landing, gather my sunglasses, or purse, or shopping bags, smile at the squirrels, or shoppers, and taxi on. So remember, surrender to the flow. You may fall, but you’ll never really be down.
Caution: Do not roll when you trip and fall while climbing a mountain.
“I careened forward, splintering into an abrupt dissection of mind and body. My mind held upright in irksome disbelief while my body spilled forward. Knees skidded across the carpet of pine needles, scraping over tree roots. Palms grated and crunched against tiny rocks. The pack’s weight slammed down upon me, sending my stomach to the ground and my chin against a rock. I laid facedown in the dirt for an extraordinary length of time. Or so it seemed. In reality, I scrambled forward, clumsily gaining my stride with the help of a firm grip upon my forearm. The fall replayed in my head as I brooded over stinging palms and knees. Gradually, sharp prickles of pain melted to warm surface burns and I noticed Thaddeus standing beside me on the up side of the path. “It drops off,” he said, pointing into a row of brambles on the down side. I glimpsed the edge of the path… the ground fell into nothingness. (Memory Lake, p.222)