Orthopedic Challenges Vs. Optimism
Most days I am pretty optimistic. In fact, I have often been called a Pollyanna because of my insane optimism at times despite the huge obstacles I have faced while walking the planet. But, today, in this moment, I feel the need to vent, to embrace my discouragement and frustration, and say to myself, "It's not ok today." Many of you know my history, but most probably don't. The short summary is that I am on my 24th surgery in my 44 years due to a genetic orthopedic issue that wears my joints/ligaments out too quickly. Both ankles have been rebuilt, my right knee is partially replaced, my neck is fused, and my lumber has 6 screws keeping it stable. All of this led me to have to leave my beloved teaching career and face life a bit differently. I am ok with differently. I am even ok with dealing with medical challenges for the most part because I know how much worse it could be. I am not facing a terminal illness. Yes, I live with a life of chronic pain, but I will take that any day over a terminal illness and 99% of the time I embrace the fact that I live an extraordinary life. Yesterday though, on a day where I learned that another disc, the one above my fusion has collapsed, I am angry.
It would be one thing if I had lifted a car or something, or tried to climb a tree and busted my behind, but no. I simply woke up and had another excruciating shot of pain wake me to reality and remind me that my body is not my friend at times. It's not fair, it doesn't make sense, and it can be infuriating in light of the dreams and visions my mind has dancing around....ones I will never see to fruition for the most part.
My art and my faith will be what pulls me through again, along with the support of my family and friends. I just simply wish they wouldn't have to. For today I simply wish that I could begin a year and know that it will be one of wellness and healing and outrageous joy. I will get there, I will. But it won't be today, and once I get past the anger, deal with the path that is before me, I will be ok. I am grateful though to be able to say to a group of friends like you all that life just sucks sometimes. I'll get my pollyanna on tomorrow, but right now......gahhhhhhhhhh!
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