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I’m looking for positive omens. And I’m finding them everywhere.

Many of you have already heard that Travis took a bad tumble down the stairs last Sunday. He broke both his tibia and fibula in a splintery way, needed surgery, and is still in the hospital dealing with a post-operative infection. It’s been a stressful, worrisome week. We’re told that his recovery process will mean the next several months are no picnic, either. Though we have every confidence that he’ll be fine in the end, it’s gonna be a long haul.

I don’t think we’ll ever be sure of all the mechanics of how the fall happened. He missed a step. He hadn’t turned on the light. He was carrying that stupid 50 lb. sandwich board sign, which is awkward and heavy even on flat, well-lit surfaces. My theory is that when he tripped, he smashed the sign into his shin as he fell forward, and — SNAP.

Whether or not this is accurate, I’ve been blaming the sign. I’m putting all my frustration and rage into the fucking sign. The sign that ruined Christmas. Bad sign!

A bad sign seems like such an obvious warning — a harbinger of danger, ignore it at your peril. I think it’s pretty fair to say that not paying enough attention to the bad sign caused, or at least contributed to, the accident.

It’s also probably accurate to say that the result was objectively sucky. And yet…

We’re also encountering a lot of Good Signs. Even in the midst of uncertainty, anxiety, and pain, there have been delightful synchronicities and sweet little assurances that feel like messages from the Universe:

  • Travis’s attending physician in the hospital is Dr. Sherpa. That seems an excellent surname for someone helping him to scale this mountain of healing. To take the Himalayan metaphor even further, I’ll mention that Travis has been on supplemental oxygen since leaving base camp.
  • There’s a flock of geese that has been flying over the house every morning for the past three days while I have my coffee. While it’s not especially rare to hear them this time of year, this flock flies really low in a nice, straight V. And each day they’ve been perfectly aligned with the window over Travis’s empty desk. To me, that feels auspicious…
  • A less-interpretive, more straightforward, positive sign has been the kindness of every single person on the surgical and medical teams. They’re all running constantly, spread thin, dealing with all sorts of physical and emotional emergencies from every direction. And they have been unfailingly gentle, friendly, patient, and professional. I find that deeply encouraging.
  • The very best sign — the ginormous, shiny star in the middle of everything — has been the many reminders of how loved and supported we are. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your care and concern, your offers to help, your prayers and encouragement.

You’ve held us both strong and kept me grounded when I’m pretty sure otherwise I would’ve lost my shit.  You may not even have known what was going on or that you were being my rock, but you sure were. Thank you.

I don’t know what I’m going to want to talk about this Sunday. If I’ve learned anything this week, it’s how quickly things can change. So I’m not going to make too many promises or get attached to my own ideas right now.

You won’t mind if I pull an old sermon out of the vault for a rerun. Or perhaps it’ll be about some of the spiritual principles with which I’ve been navigating these choppy waters. Probably, I’ll still be thinking about signs and synchronicities.

Keep the prayers coming, friends. I promise to let you know if we need anything or could use help. Please forgive me if I don’t respond to every message in a timely fashion — I like to think of myself as an agile communicator, but keeping myself and everybody up to speed has been a challenge.

I’ll see you on Sunday, December 11, 10:00am at Maple Street Dance Space. Don’t forget about our Ho-Ho-Holiday Cabaret that night! XO, Drew

©2022 Drew Groves

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