Tina L Porter

The bad foot and the good fight

Grace No Comment

The sky is threatening a storm. Earlier, as I woke, the thunder rumbled and rumbled like a cranky old person who isn’t quite sure if they want to get up out of their chair or not. No, that wasn’t the thunder; it was me.

I’m waiting to go to a doctor’s appointment about this bone spur on my foot, one I must have had from years of walking up and down hallways, standing in doors as I watched the real action going on “inside” the room I was watching; from years of walking on Michigan Avenue while wishing I could blink my eyes and be transported home, where my feet could be up and my eyes could be closed. A bone spur aggravated when I thought I could march and march and march some more with a million of my closest friends, joining together to be seen and heard before the impending rollback of what rights we thought we had.

I just looked at my phone from that day: 9.2 miles on a body that hadn’t walked further than from the couch to the kitchen in many months leading up to that march. I remember standing on the Metro because there were so many of us, jamming ourselves in, and welcoming the next group with hurrahs and groans, and standing up straight because there was no other way in that crowd.

I winced with every jerk and buckle of the train because my foot hurt so godd@mn bad and my eldest daughter looked at me and said “you don’t have to look at me like that every time I look at you” because she didn’t know I was holding on to that strap with every ounce of my body shrieking from a pain that emanated from the ground up.

But it was worth it, to march when we felt there was nothing else we could do in that moment. And now, finally, all these months later, I’m getting my foot looked at (again) while that man travels abroad, embarrassing me, my country, and enraging the world with his dreams of a resurgence of the 1950s policies without the tax rates that fueled that economic stability and dog whistling a brand of white nationalism that is so regressive and hateful that it has ripped apart the dream we thought we had of America. I remind myself as I type that that perhaps that is not all bad. Perhaps shredding a dream that left out more than it let in is the first step.

Alas. The sky lightens a bit and it appears it may not rain on my head as I hobble nobly to the car, back straight and hopes realigned with the truth that good will not win on its own, as this foot will not heal on its own.

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