Sunday, May 10, 2009

Sole Survivor

It’s funny how one’s life changes through the years. There is a newspaper box that’s across the street from my house. Everyday except Sundays, I’ve walked over the street and bought the newspaper. About a year ago I met a man who is a political cartoonist for newspapers, so now when I hear the change clank in the metal box I think of Jim as I grab the news.

I sat on my porch last night and I realized I wasn’t going to walk over the street anymore to buy my paper. I’m worried it’s too far. I don’t want to risk my foot. So I sat and stared at that box.

When I was first diagnosed with diabetes, I smoked 3 packs of Winstons a day. I remember thinking in the middle of the night while I shivered with sickness on the surgical wing of the hospital, “I’ll save so much money now that I don’t smoke.” But then I had to buy bandages and gauze pads and surgical tape and antibiotics. And I saved nothing.

But my life.

I remember when my foot was healed I thought, “I’ll save money when I don’t buy bandages anymore.” But then I had to buy orthotic shoes and orthopedic socks and test strips for my blood sugar monitor. And I saved nothing.

But my foot.

Last night I looked across the street and I realized I wasn’t going to save money now that I pocketed the quarter. I have to pay for doctor’s appointments and buy bandages and gauze pads and surgical tape and newer shoes with different inserts and new socks that will surround my misshapen foot. I haven't medical insurance and now I must save up for surgery. My podiatrist suggests he amputate half my foot and remove some of the risk of losing the leg. So I must pocket my pride and my pennies.

Yet I’ll save nothing.

But my tears.

Last night I stood up and I picked up my laptop and I walked inside and I saved those tears for bigger sorrows and larger losses.

And I remembered I need to save my soul as I lose my sole.