Bouncing back

Two weeks ago, I was bouncing on the trampoline with 3B when I felt something let go in my back. On that first bounce, it was just below my left shoulder blade. On the next bounce something let go below my right shoulder blade.

The pain was as if a sword had sliced out across my back from my shoulder blades down to my hips. I immediately sat down and asked 3B to stop bouncing while I crept off the trampoline. I haven’t been back on since, and my back hasn’t been the same since.

It’s too bad, since one of the kids’ favorite activities has been bouncing together on the trampoline–with each other, with one parent or all of us together for a family bounce. The kids do most of the bouncing, but it’s a good way to be outside, active, interacting and (mostly) enjoying ourselves.

Now when they go out, I try to do other things around them, like weed the lawn, pick up dog poop, set up the deer fence around our garden–you know, other fun stuff. At least I’m close enough to talk with. It is a reminder, however, that I’m not getting any younger and that I don’t recover as quickly as I used to.

I used to be able to go on a 25-mile bike ride without food or water, come home, work in the yard, then go out with friends until 2 a.m. and still get up at the hour of…well, noonish. Hey, I was a teenager. But any one of those activities–the ride, the yard work or the going out–is a full day for me.

Just this week, a friend asked me to go to Two Trains Running with him–a chance I leapt at. I’ve loved the show since I saw it in Los Angeles with Laurence Fishburne, courtesy of my aunt and uncle some 20 years ago…that can’t be right, can it? It can’t have been 20 years…right? Maybe that’s why after this performance my friend and I went home to our wives and kids and sleep rather than going out for coffee and pie and a long discussion of the show, as I did with my roommate who was my date for the show 20 years ago.

This week, however, after getting a sound three hours of sleep and going to work the next day, it was all I could do when I got home to immediately sit down for dinner and creep off to bed.

I can still do it at my age, but the bouncing back, well, it’s not so bouncy anymore.