What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stranger

The Wounded Gazelle January 6, 2014

Filed under: Tales of Humanity's Imperfections — meganorussell @ 8:58 pm
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I have a problem admitting that I’m sick. Not to myself. I’m fine with getting sick. It happens. But I have a problem showing weakness to those around me. It might be something primal: fear of being left behind by the pack. You don’t want to be the wounded fish that gets eaten by the piranha. Or maybe it has something to do with growing up with a chronically ill parent. It seems silly to complain about being sick when I can reasonably believe that I will be better tomorrow.

I’m in tech for a show right now, and I feel like death. But I will not admit defeat. It’s not in my nature. I’ve danced on a dislocated knee and hip. With two stress fractures in my shin. With a fever. Throwing up. You name it, I’ve done it.

The crowning jewel in my it was probably not the best plan to dance like that is the day I had the planter wart removed. I had one of those nasty little buggers in the ball of my foot, and my parents insisted I get it taken out. I went to the doctor, and he used a tiny razor sharp ice cream scoop to take the little thing out of my foot, leaving behind a bleeding hole the size of a nickel with pouchy skin around the outside. The hole I was fine with. The pouch skeezed me out. And it all hurt like a Mo-Fo.

So, I wrapped my foot nice and tight and went to ballet class. I smiled my way through the pain, cheating my weight onto my good foot as often as possible. No one knew that I was in pain, until we started doing turns across the floor. The teacher stopped class because there was something strange on the floor. Like Cinderella’s ugly stepsister, I had bleed through my shoe. My teacher made me go clean and re-wrap my foot and refused to let me dance for the rest of the class. Which was probably a good idea since the floor had become a bio-hazard. Oops.


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