Following an operation, these six weeks of not being able to walk or even let my right foot touch the ground have not been easy. The immobility and loss of independence drive me absolutely crazy.
In moments of frustrations, I remind myself of all the people who deal with lifelong disabilities. It keeps me from wallowing (for too long). Suck it up Suzy, it is only temporary.
Freedom is now within reach. To say I have high hopes today would be an understatement. Excitement fills the air as I prepare for my hospital visit. My 3 year old daughter reminds me to bring my other shoe. This will be the last time I have to brush my teeth in the kitchen sink, scoot down the stairs on my bottom, or call a taxi to get where I need to go. I choose to wear my “Try 2 keep up” Nike t-shirt just for fun on my last day of hopping on one foot. At least I haven’t lost my sense of humor.
The taxi driver and a friend are waiting at the door. I hop back into the other room to grab my car keys, just in case I am able to retrieve my car on the way home. Then I scoot down the stairs with my crutches in hand. From the taxi I notice the clouds. what a shame the sun is not shining, I am so looking forward to getting back on my bike this afternoon.
Minutes later, the sound of the saw is full blast and 3,2,1…cast off! I am free! My leg is free; although my foot looks foreign to me and there is no feeling in some parts of it. The surgeon comes in to check his handiwork and as quickly as the pink cast came off, it is replaced with a mini-purple version. I am handed a Herman Munster shoe to wear over the cast and told I can start to try to walk on it with my crutches a few minutes at a time and build up from there.
A crushing blow. This was not the plan. I must have said 1,000 times in the past weeks that I wish I had a walking cast, but I meant then, not now! I was told when the stitches came out and my blue plaster cast was changed to pink fiberglass, that there wouldn’t be a next step or even physical therapy. At the hospital I feel alright, but as I get out of the taxi again and stand at my front door again, I do not want to go back in there again. I just want to run, or at least walk away, but there will be no running today or walking, biking or driving either.
People are always telling me not to get my hopes up. I am an overzealous optimist; I tune them out. I do try to manage my expectations (a bit), but my hopes are not to be managed or squashed. Sure, I don’t need the right shoe I brought along, or my car keys, but my high hopes got me this far and after a small dip of disappointment, the same high hopes will get me through the next two weeks. With a nudge from my friend, I open the door and scoot back up the stairs.