How Could She Have Known?

Perhaps a half-dozen people know about my gnarled feet:  A few doctors, a couple of ex-husbands, and my son.  I keep my feet covered at all times.  No sandals grace my shoe bench; though I used to get pedicures, I always went to the same woman.  Shortly after moving to California, I tried getting my toes done and encountered not one but two shocked pedicurists.  I abandoned that luxury.

Imagine my surprise when a box of presents arrived from a friend in Kansas City.  I drew each item from the tangle  of confetti.  A candle, a small silver necklace, a velour throw.  A hug on a mug.  

And the softest socks that anyone ever gifted me.

When darkness falls, I strain to embrace sleep.  The tightness of my spastic feet and legs overtakes my weary spirit.   Pain overwhelms me.  Most of my life I would struggle from bed and spend long chunks of time pacing the bedroom floor.  Now, in my tiny bedroom, I can only stand at the rail and stretch my calves.  Tears flow.  Thirty minutes of jagged rest yields to long segments of wakefulness saturated with barely tolerable agony.  In my son’s childhood, I would summon him to bring a pair of his thick white cotton socks.  I drew them over my cramped toes and settled my feet within their comfort.

How could my young friend in Kansas City know?  She could not have; and yet, here is evidence that some angelic hand guided her to something that would ease my particular pain.  I press their silkiness against my cheek, where tears seep into their delicate fiber.

It’s the thirteenth day of the one-hundred and twenty-fourth month of My Year Without Complaining.  Life continues.


One thought on “How Could She Have Known?

  1. Theresa

    Out has taken me one month to see this! What a lovely friend you have in Claudia. If she only knew that her gift would assertive on a day like you were having! Life can present perfect little miracles sometimes.

    You made me laugh several times in your story telling. I felt like you and I were having conversation! Miss you.


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