I had my knee surgery last Friday, November 13. It was, in many ways, the end of a long, long journey that has spanned 23 months, taken me through physio clinics from Ottawa to Vancouver, brought me tears, pain, false hope and real hope, and enlightened, educated, emasculated, edified, and caused me to evaluate everything from my faith and identity to my purpose for living. For those of you who think I'm exaggerating, peep the post from June 17.
So as I sit here now, just under a week since the journey ended, I find it somewhat funny that the only thing remaining to remind me of where I've been is three large X's of medical tape, stained crimson and covering the site of the surgeon's incisions. Where his knife entered and put an end to nearly two years of distress, but also divine inspiration.
There is no guarantee that this surgery will get me back to 'normal,' whatever normal was in the first place. I'm no longer the person I was when the injury first happened; indeed, it is odd I even consider that the operation will make me who I was, because who I was is no longer who I am, or wish to be.
I may never run competitively again. I may never again feel the pure adrenaline rush of rounding the bend on the bell lap of the 800m, lungs threatening to explode and legs threatening to collapse from under me. I may never again pop ollies off the sidewalk, land a roundhouse kick in sparring, or negate a shaky handle and suspect jumpshot by simply being able to blow past everyone.
But it doesn't matter. Maybe it did, back when I was who I used to be. But who I used to be is not who I am now. And who I am now knows that whatever comes of this surgery, the past has made me strong enough to handle it.
"So I hope that you all see, that there’s beauty in the darkness if we choose to see, that the starkness of what we now are proves to be, a reflection of what we’ve survived and what we now know. So embrace the boulder on your shoulders, with a touch as soft as snow." - Nathanael Larochette