The Rule of Three’s

Physical injuries aren’t a normal occurrence in my life. And this year it seems as if I’m oddly accident-prone.


Before the sprain…

In December, I twisted my ankle. Or foot, more accurately. While dancing at a playwriting retreat, I jumped up… and fell down. Another playwright looked at it and confirmed a sprain of some sort. But I kept dancing. Plus then I refused to stay off it, turning a slight injury into a month-long pain by returning to Zumba less than a week later and jumping up and down to T Swift’s “Shake It Off” (but how can you NOT jump up and down to that?).


… after the fall

In January–just when I’d cleared the first injury–I proved that in at least one way I fail to pass as Canadian. About ten minutes into my first try at ice skating in four years I fell flat on my ass. Not gracefully, not humorously, and I had a bruised tailbone for at least two weeks. The Canadian boyfriend was very understanding, but it was still an embarrassing, awkward injury.

Since then, I’ve been worried that the other shoe is about to drop.

Why? Because everything comes in three’s.

Three bears, three pigs, always two falls and then the big flat on your face flop… there’s a reason there were Three Stooges, too.

As we enter March, I wonder if the third “injury” is a much nastier one even further out of my control. It’s my third winter in Canada and now that all the real reasons for stress are gone, I must confront the fact that winter makes me SAD.

I haven’t written an entry on this blog over a month. I couldn’t write (or at least not the way I wanted to) at my last playwriting retreat. I thought that the milder winter, the stable new job, steady boyfriend, two amazing writing/creative projects would make me immune this year. Surely by now my age of anxiety had passed…

Not so.IMG_0623

Turns out, I could run but I couldn’t hide. I can pretend that I don’t still worry, that I don’t wonder if I’m missing out or falling behind, that the anxiety inside of me will always be more impatient than the path unspooling in front of me.

But if I can turn off the comparison monster and return to that list I made above, it’ll be okay. Plus look into a sun lamp and find other ways to keep creating and dreaming about the sun until it’s finally back.

Waiting for the third injury to arrive makes it worse. So I’m going to count this and two weeks of being ill in bed at the end of my Taiwan trip as my last injury.

I can’t make the snow melt any faster. But I can allow myself to hibernate a bit more this winter and remind myself that I can take a break–because this year, although the anxiety is back, I know spring is on its way.



About austinausten88

Playwright in love with Classic films, afternoon tea, and Noel Coward. She recently graduated from Rice University. In the fall, she will be exchanging her English major undergraduate status for that of Theatre & Performance Studies graduate student.
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2 Responses to The Rule of Three’s

  1. Nancy Sulc says:

    Nice, I would say your Taiwan sickness is #3. So continue to take care of yourself and wait for spring. The sun is on the way!!

    Love, Mom

    Sent from my iPad


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