Most of today, like everyday, was a cry for attention from me. On Sunday I suffered a foot injury. Now it hurts to walk. I’m a hypochondriac so I told everyone that I broke it. It’s difficult to explain that in more detail when you went to school for television and not body part studies.
“Why are you limping?” My colleagues asked.
“I broke my foot.” I told them. “And it hurts because of this.”
“What did you break?” They further inquired.
“The whole thing.” I explained. “I broke all of it.”
They spent the next several minutes explaining why I was probably overreacting. My foot was never swollen, it never hurt to massage it, it wasn’t discolored, and I could still walk on it. Scientifically speaking, these are all symptoms of me acting like a little bitch.
I spent the rest of the day limping everywhere I went, because it still hurt to put pressure on it. I shuffled my way to the copy machine, groaning the whole way there. I stood on one foot while pouring a cup of coffee, losing my balance halfway through, spilling some on the floor and then having to clean it up before anyone else could pour themselves a cup. When going to lunch with a group, I followed behind like 3-legged dog that everyone wanted desperately to kick. But I couldn’t help it. I shattered my foot.
It happened when I was alone in the woods on a hike. The ground was still wet from the melting snow, creating deep, quicksand-like pits of mud that could swallow a person whole. I was wearing brown, which made me a potential target for careless hunters. Athletic people sprinted past me at top speeds without warning. Some of the hills on the trail dropped off suddenly, so one wrong step and you would tumble all the way down into a pricker bush or a creek. I was thinking of all these dangers when I accidentally stepped on a rock the wrong way. And the rest is history.
It didn’t hurt immediately, so I continued my walk. The deeper I went, the quieter it became. It got to a point where all I could hear was the sound of the birds and the wind between the tracks on my Hiking Badass playlist. It was an adventure that felt good for my soul and my body (with the exception of the lifeless sack of bone powder below my ankle). I felt free. I felt reflective. I felt unattached to the world around me.
After lunch today, I contemplated visiting a doctor so they could decide whether or not to proceed with the probably necessary amputation. I figured I’d hold off for the time being and see how I feel later in the week. Besides, as much as it hurts to step, I wear my injury like a badge. Of what? I have no idea. Maybe a badge of bravery for doing something outside my normal daily routine. Maybe a badge of health for getting off the couch. Maybe no badge at all because this should be a constant part of my life.
Definitely a Purple Heart though. I lost a foot after all.