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Small Victories: Agony, Patience, and Waiting



I gave a speech today for the first time since losing my leg. It was, in many, ways a huge victory for me today. I got to stand up, even if it wasn’t in the way I had hoped, and tell part of my story. In the midst of many defeats, there are victories.


In short - nothing has gone according to plan with my leg. By now, according to “what normally happens”, I should be walking well, hiking even, at very least using a prosthetic most of every day. But now seven months out from amputation, I have no working prosthetic, and no answers are in sight. Issues and unusual prolonged pain continue with my residual limb and I’m waiting on appointments and doctors. I have no idea what is next, how to properly hold onto hope, or when I’ll be able to move forward in the way I am so desperate to progress.


But in this weird period of uncomfortable waiting, I think it’d be a waste not to take advantage of the things I do have. To recognize the small successes, even if they aren’t the ones I want. These months have been a massive practice in finding patience and learning to control expectations. I’d be remiss not to recognize that this is a time of great richness, even though many moments are simultaneously agony.


So today, I got to stand up in front of an audience, missing a leg, and I didn’t feel weird doing it. I felt like myself. I just felt like Jo. Today, I recognize and appreciate that victory. I don’t know what tomorrow is going to bring or when answers will come, but in the in-between, I’m going to keep trying to practice the mindfulness to recognize the beautiful moments.

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