Day 17 of Right Foot Paralysis

Wow, it’s only been 17 days since the orthopedic surgeon cut open my foot, wrapped it in the most miserable garment I’ve ever worn (a cast) and replaced the use of my right leg with crutches?

Maybe it feels so long because these days, I’m pretty much incapable of doing basically anything that I used to be able to do. I can’t climb stairs (at least not gracefully), I can’t walk more than a block without getting severely exhausted, and, due to the fact that it’s my right foot that has been casted, I can’t drive a car.

Also I can’t go anywhere without someone asking what I did to my foot, someone making a bad joke about how I injured it (no, I didn’t get in an axe fight with Mike Tyson), or someone asking to sign my cast.

Listen, I wouldn’t mind hearing that I’m having a good hair day once in awhile too.

Highlights of my day:

I chased down a public bus.

Due to my inability to operate a motor vehicle, I’ve had to find other ways to get to work each day. Luckily, I live in Shockoe Bottom and work in the Fan, so it was really only a matter of figuring out how to use the bus system.

I’ve figured out which bus numbers to take, and know what time which one comes so that I can be at work every morning by 9:00.

This morning, however, I didn’t have to be at work quite as early, so I wasn’t sure specifically what time the bus would arrive. Knowing it comes every 15 minutes (ish), I took the backdoor out of my apartment and sat down on a bench (exhausted from the fifteen yard uphill walk). I started to look up the next bus arrival on my GRTC app (ie my new best friend), when I noticed a bus driving along across the street. When I saw the “52” blaring across the front screen (MY BUS), panic mode set in.

I immediately ran down the street (the term “ran” is used very loosely in this scenario), skidded through oncoming traffic, and used my best “Yes, you! You’re the bus I want to ride this morning!” expression.

Luckily the bus driver knew a frantic cripple when he saw one, and held the bus for me. Though I felt like it took me ages to shuffle down the street, he told me that he had never seen someone move so fast on crutches.

An old woman told me that I will forever be plagued by my foot injury.

Already miserable and ready for this whole “foot ordeal” to be over with and forgotten about, I’ve been convincing myself that all of this discomfort, inconvenience, and literal blood, sweat and tears will be completely worth it and one day lead me to a back-to-normal right foot.

While waiting for my second bus this morning, an elderly lady sitting at the bus stop next to me brought me back to reality. She asked what had happened, I told her, and she nodded while giving a long, “Mmmmmmhmm,” as if she’d heard it a million times before. She then told me that that sort of thing would never fully go away and cause me problems for the rest of my life.

Shocked, offended, and terrified that she was right, I asked to see her medical license for proof that what she surmised was accurate.

No, actually I just ignored her.

I figured out how to get more stares than I’ve ever gotten in a ten-minute time span.

Be a young white girl. Sit right in the middle of two old black men on a bench at a busy intersection.

Here’s hoping Day 18 is a little more uplifting.

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