A View From The Other Side

Charleston, SC. I have grown to have, in these last few days, a greater appreciation of people who spend much of life in a wheelchair or trying to negotiate walking on crutches. I am writing this at MUSC hospital, the day’s surgery location, sitting in my wheelchair, my left knee in a brace, waiting for my surgery. I fell! Rushing down a flight of steps running to go out with my daughter and grandchildren. Very bad move.

Now they say that this is kind of routine. Just repair a few tendons or something. Lessons learned….do not rush down stairs with hands filled with stuff. Thank God for a daughter and son in law that really stepped up and grandchildren who provide full time escape.

So, look, the next time you encounter someone who is disabled—even for a little while–go out of your way to be kind. The world IS different from down here and we DO take things for granted. My daughter is sitting next to me trying to project optimism. Who knows? Anyway, these things do have a subtle way of reminding one that we need to be a little more careful as we rush through life….maybe even taking our time.

So, we wait….not good at that! I am just hoping that the doc is in a good mood, had a good breakfast, that his kids were kind to him And his spouse loving….OY
RAbbi Richard F Address, D.Min

About Rabbi Richard Address 424 Articles
Rabbi Richard F. Address, D.Min, is the Founder and Director of www.jewishsacredaging.com. Rabbi Address served for over three decades on staff of the Union for Reform Judaism; first as a Regional Director and then, beginning in 1997, as Founder and Director of the URJ’s Department of Jewish Family Concerns and served as a specialist and consultant for the North American Reform Movement in the areas of family related programming. Rabbi Address was ordained from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 1972 and began his rabbinic career in Los Angeles congregations. He also served as a part time rabbi for Beth Hillel in Carmel, NJ while regional director and, after his URJ tenure, served as senior rabbi of Congregation M’kor Shalom in Cherry Hill, NJ from 2011-2014.


  1. Wishing you a refuah shlema, Rabbi. Sending good thoughts your way – about the surgeon’s hands and your body’s ability to heal, heal, heal quickly, so that you can get back to hugging those sweet grandchildren.

  2. Last summer I fell. Did not think anything of it. But the pain did not go away and I eventually had rotator cup surgery on my left shoulder. Naturally I am left handed. I was in a brace for 6 weeks. Luckily I had two daughters and sons in law to help me out. A great congregation to get me places. I know what you mean. hope you heal soon.

  3. Wishing you a speedy recovery. After listening to your seminar at Temple Judea I have been a captive audience to your podcasts – wonderful info. Thanks for all you do to assist caretakers and all of us who are aging. Btw I listened to Atul Gawande’s Being Mortal as I drove up from Fl to Buffalo NY and as you had mentioned it’s an excellent read!

  4. I recall years ago after I sprained my ankle and was put on crutches, q person in leg braces noted to me that in a few months I’d be out of the crutches but he would still be in his leg braces. I wasn’t sure at the time what to say, and I am still not sure how to apply this, but it does make me appreciate that many setbacks are actually temporary. And I certainly hope that this is quickly over for you!

What are your thoughts?