On gimpy knees


So much hinges on the knee. 


During our move to the new house, I did something to offend my right knee. I don’t know if it was something I said or did, but it has been complaining day and night for about a week. After several particularly heated arguments, I tried cooling it down with ice. That worked for a while. Various creams and gentle massaging have helped, too.




My knees never used to be so touchy. We traveled everywhere together; my silent partners who helped my thighbones and shank bones stay connected. I admit I complained about their shape for years. I’ve never had shapely legs, and even though I’m not overweight, my knees are pudgy.



I searched online to find out more about cranky knees and discovered I have at least 8 or 9 serious joint/ligament/cartilage/bone diseases, syndromes, and conditions. I should know better than to use Google as a diagnostic tool, but I can’t help myself. Unlike my knees, I’m slightly unhinged.



Ever since the right knee started whining, I’ve been expressing how grateful I am for my legs and for my knees in particular. Without them I would never have been able to skate around the block as a little girl, pigtails flying and both knees skinned up by the cracks that caught the wheels and brought me down.  I would have missed getting up on the dance floor to do the Twist, the Watusi, the Pony, and the Mashed Potato. And how else would I have been able to roll out of bed at 3 a.m. for a crying child who found sleep again only as I paced and hummed across the living room floor? These legs with their pudgy knees hiked up the 300 steps of the Sacre-Couer Basilica after a day of sightseeing just to delight my two eyes with a panoramic view of Paris and never complained when I then asked them to take me up the 284 steps to the top of the Arc de Triomphe. Across streets, up and down stairs, on concrete walkways, over dirt paths, atop tiled and wooden floors, and through yards of green grass, my legs and knees have shown me 10,000 miles or more of our sun-warmed world. So perhaps a little complaining is to be expected.



This morning the right knee hasn’t said much. I’ve been much kinder to it this week, so perhaps that helped. I hope Google and my imagination are wrong about all those knee ailments, but I’ve passed into the land where the traveler is often waylaid by disease and deterioration. From here, it’s hard to tell if the road ahead leads upward, downward, or stays flat. I’m counting on my knees, gimpy or otherwise, to get me to my destination.



Photo courtesy of AKha