I have owned a couple of balls since that time, I use them when I am sitting at a desk instead of a chair, because they are comfy and they feel good on my back and they do something good to my brain. Theoretically. I have had a few balls in the last ten years because the boys ruin them. One ball should last quite a long time by my reckoning, but not with boys. They get stabbed or left by the wood stove or taken outside and left out there for the winter and various other sad endings.
I have also noticed that whenever boys play with my ball, they get hurt. They try to stand on it, or roll along on the bellies and land on their faces, or through it at glass things and that sort of thing. So recently I got a new ball. Because the last one never was the same after being outdoors all winter long.
The boys are forbidden to touch it. They cannot sniff it or blow on it or touch it with inanimate objects or even give it a sidelong glance. Rosebud, on the other hand is allowed to touch it. She is gentle and pats it and sometimes rolls it along or two or three feet and pretends it is her pet. But she does not harm it or herself in any way when she casts glances at it.
This might not sound fair to you all. But I don’t actually care if it’s fair. It’s not my job to be fair. The boys have, historically, wrecked all the balls. She has not. She has not given me any reason for a healthy dose of mistrust around the exercise ball issue. And until she does, I will let her have her gentle play with it when I am not using it.
But as of this morning, I am afraid of the exercise ball. And it is no one’s fault except my own. This morning I was standing on my chair (not the ball) that I always stand on to get my box of Sticky Things off the top shelf. Yes, I have a box labelled Sticky Things because it seemed like an excellent yet diverse category of school/household materials such as sticky labels, sticky notes, glue dots, page markers, file tabs and the like. I keep them up high because, if you are a mother reading this blog, you will know that sticky things hold an intense fascination for small children and big children alike. I still like sticky things. That’s why I have a special box for them. I have so many.
I stood on my chair which I always stand on, and it is Very Stable. I got my box of Sticky Things down, then I stepped downward and backward off the chair in an imprudent fashion. I stepped onto my exercise ball. Which is Quite Unstable. And then I fell backwards over the ball, tush over teakettle as it were.
And I hit my head, my neck, my upper arm and my forearm all on various places on the nearby bookshelf. It hurt. I implore you; Do Not Stand On Exercise Balls.