I’m Working on Forming a Habit…and It’s a Good One 😃

27 years ago today, I was involved in a motorcycle accident. I was young and in love with a boy and got on the back of his bike (why not, what could happen?)

On one of our rides, a car pulled out in front of us, causing us to collide. As the passenger, I was ejected from the back of the bike and flew through the air, landing quite a distance away. It is regulated that we wear helmets, and thank goodness it is. I don’t remember the flight but I remember opening my eyes and watching the scene unfold before me. Sooo many people stopped to help and I am still so touched and grateful they did. I remember it all happening in slow motion and feeling like an observer and not a participant. My whole experience in the emergency room was a folly of errors. I was released some hours later with a sprained ankle, only to return to the hospital with muscle spasms throughout my leg. The diagnosis, a fractured tibea plateau. It meant admission, surgery. A day or so later I had the procedure to implant three stainless steel screws in my leg. My whole left side took the brunt of the damage with a fracture of a metacarpal, my leg fracture and a severely sprained ankle. The physio department created a archaic looking contraption for me to use as a crutch and not long after I was on my way home to convalesce.

As an 18 year old I had just begun my grade 12 year and was looking forward to graduation. All of that changed. After a period of shock and adjustment, I was able to salvage one course of the semester, English, and threw myself into it. It was around that time that The Celestine Prophecy was published and the Deepak Chopra book, Ageless Body Timeless Mind had hit the shelves. The accident threw me into an existential crisis that I coped with by reading. I consumed all the books by Khalil Gibran that my family could find. I would love to read all of my assignments from that class now.

When it came to my education, I was no longer prepared to be a mediocre student. Feeling the fragility of life set me on a new course to study harder and use the new found time needing to make up almost a whole semester, to my advantage.

After healing physically, the most prevalent damage was to my ankle. The swelling was severe and caused a permanent loss of dorsey flexion; the ability of move my foot with full range of motion up and down. My left foot is fused almost in a ski boot kind of position. Which means walking is sometimes hard, running is impossible, and any impact activities that would necessitate that I push off isn’t really possible.

At the time the only possible resolution was to cut my Achilles’ tendon. And as a young woman, with a very prevalent scar from surgery, that was more than enough trauma, I wasn’t prepared to add to it. Vapid, I know….

For the last 27 years, I managed. I raised children throughout their toddler years and hobbled after them. I found that wearing high heels masked my limp and allowed me to walk with greater comfort. As I’ve grown older my heel height has greatly diminished, and is virtually non inexistent now. So I limp….my husband calls it my swagger. Lol!

There isn’t really a lesson behind this story, it’s more of a reflection.  This day, every year gives me pause. Sometimes I acknowledge it and sit with it and other years I acknowledge it and move on. This year I’m thinking about what was and mourning a little for what could have been. I marvel in absolute gratitude for what is and am still brought to tears when I reflect on the kindness of the strangers that stopped their lives to save me. Dramatic yes, but in the moment, that was my reality.

Now I started off this post wanting to share a new habit I’m working on. And I think I’ll end our time with that. My feet and leg are sore, everyday and in many ways. Like many women, I have the occasional pedicure to treat my feet. Never have I made it a priority to care for my feet regularly. I don’t know if it’s just because they are so far away, or it’s by the time I think of them, I’m just too tired to do anything about it.

Some time ago I had heard that there was a master pedicurist in my community and that she offered wellness pedicures. I stored that bit of knowledge in my memory and set about normal life. This year, shortly after Covid lockdown, I began to form an online relationship with this same esthetician, Rachael Weesjes owner of White Feather Spa. I had made it a priority it start to look after my skin and I was purchasing products from the skin care line she carried. Just after our community entered phase 2 I had booked an appointment for my first wellness pedicure. It’s was lovely. We had a wonderful conversations and got along beautifully. She is truly a consummate professional and someone I think could become a very good friend too.

Yesterday was my next scheduled appointment. It was equally lovely, and I walked away starting my day feeling like my feet were brand new (or at least my broken version of new).

Rachel’s service is a gift in my life. Her care and kindness rejuvenates my tired,sore, and broken feet and makes them look pretty too. I don’t feel ashamed at the sight of them anymore. These sad feet have carried me through 45 years of adventures, and I’m working diligently to reward them for their service regularly. So that’s my new habit. I declare to the world that I will book regular wellness pedicures for my feet in gratitude for their daily service. They serve me well and I intend to express my gratitude by taking better care of them.