I just returned from an evening walk.
To strangers, walking one mile at a moderate pace may not seem like a feat.
However, prior to my surgery four weeks ago (I had breast implants + silicone-filled lymph nodes removed), trudging around the cul-de-sac would have been a victory for me. I was exhausted, lethargic, and I was in pain.
There was the occasional sharp pain that felt like a needle being sewn outward from inside of my organs and joints. But it was short-lived, and therefore tolerable.
The real pain was the chronic stuff. The achy pain, akin to when skin and teeth hurt during a bout of the flu. Constant, where no position is comfortable.
I was hesitant to believe that removing my implants would make me feel better. Yes, I had nearly all of the symptoms associated with Breast Implant Illness, but I didn’t want to set too high of expectations for the outcome of the surgery.
I felt better within a few short days. Sure, I was in physical pain from the surgery, but that pain felt like good pain… Like healing pain. My joints didn’t hurt. I told myself it was because of the pain pills, so I stopped taking them. Four weeks later and I’m still free of pain.
By the end of the first week, my skin looked as though I’d been to a spa or the beach. A vibrant glow replaced the chalky complexion my mirror had come to know.
During week two, I felt energized enough to take my dog on a non-obligatory walk for the first time in many months. I went on a slow, mile-long walk four days in a row, with zero kickback from my joints. (I then took a mandatory two days off, afraid of some kind of impending flare-up.) (It never came.)
Still, I didn’t want to share about it. This Instagram doodle I posted today about wraps it up:
After posting it, I realized that I spelled jinx “Jynx,” which is because I grew up riding with a girl whose horse’s name was Jynx. At least… I think it was spelled that way.
HAVE I BEEN MISSPELLING IT FOR ALL MY LIFE?
Whatever. There are worse problems.
So. While on my walk, I started to do some light arm exercises. I was green-lighted (lit?) … (I dunno’; green-lit sounds like another word for stoned) to start exercising a week ago, and I waited until today JUST TO BE EXTRA DOUBLE SURE.
I walked out of the wooded trail and up the hill by the neighborhood lake. I had my arms extended outward and was moving them up and down and around in tiny, gentle movements.
And then there was an old man fishing.
It was dark, and I was alone… Except for the fishies and the scattering woodscritters and mosquitoes, and now… this old man.
Of course, my brain first sprinted through a few scenarios of him being a murderer, and I decided I’d fake a seizure if he tried to attack me.
Then, he looked up at me. I kept moving my arms, even though my instinct was to put them down CUZ OF LOOKING SILLY TO THIS STRANGER I’LL NEVER SEE AGAIN AND ALL.
And then, he shook his head. As if to say, “This crazy foo.”
I kept moving my arms and walking, the spiritually evolved part of me whispering namaste and sending him loving kindness while the valley girl personality inside was like “OH MY GAWD. HE DID NOT.”
In hindsight it could have been a nervous tic (tick?), and I’m just making it about myself.
EITHER WAY… HE SPOKE TO ME.
“You’re gonna’ have to flap a lot harder than that to fly.”
And I said something clever, like “haha!”
And then I felt nervous and judged, as if I needed to justify my weird movements. So I verbal diarrhea-ed about my chest surgery and how this is my first time exercising my arms.
“It’s been good fishing tonight,” he responded, clearly engaged in what I had to say
We continued chatting back and forth for about an hour.*
*no more than two minutes. It just felt longer because awkward.
I don’t remember everything that was said; I just know I said “wow” a lot in response to what he was saying. He wasn’t saying anything profound; I just got all T-Rex arms and didn’t know how to communicate.
I do remember him saying: “I stopped using this bait for a while because it never worked. Then all the sudden I bought it again today, and I’ve caught four fish already.”
I opened my mouth to say anything but wow, which was: “OH wow!”
And then wished him luck (and he didn’t wish me luck back).
As I silently judged his poor manners, he yelled out after me: “Don’t fly too close to the sun!”
I don’t know why, but that sentence stuck out to me.
Same with the bait comment. Like maybe something that hasn’t worked in the past will work for me now… because the current or weather or stars or my attitude is/are different. I’m curious to learn what that something is.
Overall, it felt like a chance encounter. Serendipitous.
I do have a tendency to analyze and apply meaning to ALL the things, which I sort of adore about myself. But this one… It keeps replaying in my mind.
I decided to write them down and let them sit. I won’t dig into them or think too heavily. I’ll just… continue existing. Continue surrendering. Continue trusting, and continue writing.