I Must Have Been Really Bad
IN A PREVIOUS LIFE
I have everything all planned out. I moved. into this little cottage 23 years ago, because it has no steps. And I was going to die here. Easy peasy. Worst case scenario, I would fall ill, go to the hospital, and check out there. But apparently, I must have been really bad in a previous life, because it seems I don’t get to do either.
Artwork by Gloria Christie, 2022.
I have scheduled myself to live another five years. I was working full-time as a political journalist, and I love it. But I started getting really tired after my 12-hour days. Ideally, I wanted to keep being a political journalist half-time and work on my book series the other half. And I got my half-time, but not in the way I planned.
You’ll recall I fell down trying to wrangle my 100-pound puppy into his night cage. I did the old tuck and roll, just like they tell parachuters in the movies. And I managed to ding everything on the way. In particular, my hip hurt.
So I’ve been gimping around here at home. But now I have a narrower triangle of life. There is my computer, my chair, and my bathroom which fortunately has water so I don’t die of thirst.
For some weird reason, I couldn’t lie down, stand up, or sit down. That was unfortunate. So I decided to sleep in my anti-gravity chair, which I firmly believe is the best invention since the car.
There is this problem, though. I can’t walk. Oh, I do a pretty good imitation, but it isn’t walking. I’ve tried the lean-on-the-furniture trick. But that hurt. I tried the squeeze the buttocks and thrust myself forward. Again, no go. Now, I position my cane so that it gives me just enough height the other leg drags behind. Dang it. That one doesn’t work either.
I was wearing my “Kiss” “Me” hot pink CROCS for stability. But the drag on them meant disconcerting unpredicted stops. So I went for my silver rubber-heeled slippers.
There were fewer sudden stops but I spilled Gatorade all over them. So I pulled out a regular pair of mules. And at last, we had ignition. Now, I do the cane to give me height. A slide. And a fluid drag. Maybe I could call that a dance, because it sure isn’t anything that resembles walking.
Of course, there is that problem with my precarious maneuvers. I might fall again. I must admit I’m pretty shaky. I wonder if that would work as a ballet?
When a good friend suggested I give up my car, I tossed that idea right out the window. But we’ve been friends since I was 16, and she knows me well. She let the idea linger in the air for a couple of weeks. Then she deftly reminded me:
If you can’t walk you certainly can’t drive!
She might have a point.
Gloria Christie is a political journalist for the liberal online newspaper The Bipartisan Report. Find her here on Facebook. Or at Three White Lions, her book written in her own unique style with a twist of humor on Amazon Kindle Vella and the Gloria Christie Three White Lions podcast on Apple, Spotify, Amazon Music, etc. Christie’s Mueller Report Adventures In Bite-Sizes a real-life compelling spy mystery (in progress).
Keep driving as long as you can lift your feet to control the petals. I suffer from a severe case of arthritis names Ankylosing Spondylitis. It has haunted me since my late teens. The damages are life altering especially as I nudge 70 but I will not give in to the disabling and neither should you. The walking is altered but keep walking. You can stay mobile with consistent effort. It isn't how much walking you do but rather how consistently you walk. Also, how you walk at this point in your life will never again be how it was in younger days. You haven't been bad; you are being challenged.