Today while on my daily hike, I waved to a woman
who I frequently see on the trail.
She is slower hiker, but always makes it to the top of the trail.
I passed her on the way up and smiled (since both of us have earphones in).
She smiled back and made her usual facial expression
which showed exhaustion, but determination.
Several minutes later after I had made it to the top, I was on my way down
and I passed this woman again.
This time she waved her hands and gestured to me to take my earphones out.
So I did, and she said in between breaths:
"Wow!! If only I had your strong legs..."
I appreciated her words of kindness and encouragement probably
more than she will ever know.
If only she knew that just a few short years ago, I couldn't even stand up or
stretch my legs without horrible pain or ripping my skin off.
If only she knew the bleeding, the surgeries, and the therapy I endured.
If only she knew that most of the skin that covered these babies
were from other parts of my body,
and some skin was grown in a incubator in Boston; and surgically grafted on.
If only she knew the thousands- no millions of tears I shed while recovering
and pushing myself harder and harder to get better.
If only she knew the billions of prayers I offered up to
God to sustain and carry me when my legs couldn't.
These sweetheart legs of mine have been through some tough stuff,
but without fail they carry me up all kinds of mountains every single day-
without a single complaint (mostly).
I realize they are not "attractive" or "normal", but they are MY LEGS!
And they work just fine.
I'd never trade these babies in. They are proof I am a survivor,
and I can do hard things.
And I have the scars to prove it.
(Albion fit wear)