My favorite thing to do in the summer – the thing I look forward to the most – is going to the ocean with my family. We’ve been doing it for years. I used to think the cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents – everyone – would pack up and go to Washington’s Long Beach for my birthday. It wasn’t until a couple of years ago I discovered it was for the salmon. I just happened to be born at the same time the family all went fishing.
Anyway, I look forward to strolling on the beach, exploring the shops, gazing into the shriveled up eyes of Jake the Aligator Man… more famous in death than he ever was in life.
(At this point, I have to wonder who thought this gaff was a good idea? And who is this poor soul – really? And if it isn’t a gaff, then are there more of Jake’s family swimming out in the sea? Should concerned citizens band together and create a sanctuary for the alligator peoples of the world? Should we post images on social media – oh, never mind… back to the story…)
Last year while strolling along on the beach, I soon realized that strolling had become painful. My ankle wasn’t working right, in fact, it would collapse under me making walking on sand nearly impossible.
I thought back to a year before – to the time I fell down the stairs. Now I wondered why I hadn’t gone to see my podiatrist. I made the appointment as soon as I got home.
After the MRI, my surgeon, Dr. Cindy, was elated. Not only was I missing a ligament on my lateral thing-a-ma-jig, there was a massive ganglion cyst that needed to be extracted. Oh, the joy! Dr. Cindy loves what she does and she’s very good at it.
Unbeknownst to me, the cyst that had resided on the top of my left foot had a twin on my right foot. They had been living with me for a very long time, two matching lumps of whatever, innocuous and nearly exotic, having everyone who looked at them believing they belonged.
But when Dr. Cindy extracted the one on my left foot – the one on my right foot stuck out like a sore thumb – on my foot. Painfully obvious with no place to hide. It was then I decided to name it Larry, and posthumously name the other one, Harry.
I’m looking forward to walking on the beach – actually walking – no hobbling. Spending time contemplating the endless cycle of the universe, the turn of the earth, the pull of the ocean. It’s really what helps to center me. Thanks to Dr. Cindy, this year I can do it without pain.
I suppose the point of this blog post is to encourage people who have perhaps hit a hurdle in their lives to find a way around it – or through it. The fact is that life will throw all sorts of interesting things at us. That’s what life does best. It’s how we receive it that matters.
I am very good at denial. It’s my super power. But denial led me to a place I didn’t want to go. Now, after two successful surgeries, cyst removals and ligament repair, I’m looking forward to walking on the beach and enjoying my family. Life is amazing!
My friends, don’t live in denial! Life’s short, living is important. Love what you do and learn how to jump over those hurdles in life – or go around them – or find a ladder. Hey, I’m not an American Ninja Warrior, though I do like the show.
Things I’ve learned since Harry and Larry have left:
- Feet are important – take care of them.
- If you see something weird – go to the doctor!
- Moving is important.
- Pain may just become a part of your life. Learn how to manage it.
- Alternating heat and cold can be very helpful.
- Take a darn Tylenol, for crying out loud.
- Sometimes it’s okay to sit back and put your feet up.
- Find your passion and follow it, because when you don’t, everything hurts more.
I want to hear from you! Please comment on my post – and share it if you want. Oh, if you need a good foot surgeon, I know one!
Until the next time –
Click here to follow the link to #summer #reading #fun!