Friday, October 11, 2013

The Unkindness of Ignoring Others in Your Space

It was a busy Sunday afternoon at the Eaton Centre, a big mall in downtown Toronto.  I was surrounded by crowds of people, hurrying forward when I came to a short flight of stairs.  The people behind me were pushing me to move faster when I slipped on the last stair and fell, twisting my ankle.  No one stopped to help.  In fact, two people stepped on my leg while they rushed by down the stairs and forward..  I rolled out of the way of the stairs and slowly stood up with my husband's help.  When I got home, I used ice on the ankle, raising my leg to take down the swelling.  The next day, I went to a local hospital emergency department and found out that I broke the cuboid bone in my foot.  I am walking with an air cast for 6 weeks.  I am slowed down considerably.  I walk more carefully, miss streetcars and buses and I can't drive because my right foot was injured. 

I am puzzled that my fellow walkers did not pause to help me.  I looked around me while sitting on the floor, collecting my dignity and saw that many people were talking or texting on their cell phones while walking, others were walking, head down barreling forward with not a glance to the left or right.  I was stirred by not shaken by what I observed.  I will watch out for others now with more attentiveness so I do not miss the potential of what I see.

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