Because the days are dark, the weather is stark, and the news is what it is, I think we need a light touch this month. So I have a silly story. You see, while my left foot sports five toes, my right foot shows only four, and therein lies the rub, literally. Are you curious? Probably not, but hang in there.
For the last ten years, my hammertoe never bothered me. I inherited this condition from my Mother. She had the works–bunions, calluses, hammertoes–which she covered with many little plasters. We shared the same gene pool.
Early in the summer, that bump on my second toe had a growth spurt, and it began to throb and almost doubled in size. Not funny. Pinocchio’s nose was growing on my foot.
Talking to my internist, he suggested I might try shoes with square boxes in the front or talk to an orthopedic man. My podiatrist shooed me off to get open-toed shoes, which I did. But neither idea seemed like a long term solution. So off I went to an orthopedic foot surgeon, expecting to hear about pins and pain to come, which I did hear about.
But my surgeon also gave me a choice: 1. Break big toe, insert pin and then straighten second toe (big ouch) and insert pin and stay home six weeks and heal. Or. 2. Remove the toe, as in amputate. Be up and about in a week.
Essentially, after a long and thoughtful week, it became a no brainer. I innocently scheduled my procedure, but I also told a few friends, who told a few friends, who told a few friends. All the strong feedback spooked me. My little decision raised eyebrows, friends questioned me. What about my balance? No one had heard of such an outrageous thing. “What outrageous thing? I am not having major surgery, or even a facelift. It’s only a toe.” It was hard for me to fathom that one toe caused so much feeling. Ah well!
Fast forward. I persevered and had the surgery. I went in at 6: 00 a.m. and was home at 9:00 a.m. A week later, the surgeon, a graduate of the Northwestern School of Medicine, smiled and pronounced me good to go, no restrictions. Two weeks later, I fully engaged in my line dancing class. I wanted a ballet class, but you have to make some trade offs to age.
What did I learn? People can scare you out of things as well as into things. Even a little change can cause a big brouhaha. Everyone thought C. Columbus would fall off the end of the world. Columbus and I know better.
We have so much to be thankful for, at least I do. I just bought a pair of $100 dollar boots for thirty dollars at Kohls.
Let me hear from you.