A friend told me about a letter to the editor he read recently from someone who talked about driving in Doylestown and honking at a pedestrian with two canes. I did not see the letter myself but I think I’m the only person around here who walks daily with two canes. People who often see me walking might be interested in my thoughts.
Many years ago, a speeding drunk driver on the wrong side of the road hit my car head-on at 120 mph. This put me in a coma for two months and kept me in the hospital for seven more months. Then my wife left me and took my 4-year-old daughter. This was 40 years ago, but the severe head trauma destroyed my sense of balance. I am now significantly disabled, cannot drive, and need two canes to walk.
Yes, it is unusual for someone to use two canes. But those who complain do not know their own need for strength. We all have some amazing abilities: walking on two legs; thinking complex thoughts; and many more. I almost lost every single one.
I know what kept me going and I just wrote a book about this. It talks about the need for inner strength. “Piece We Need: inner strength, to face serious challenges” I wrote this primarily for young adults. These are people who will see many challenges: both the expected obstacles and the global disruptions that cannot be predicted.
I was thinking that older people are mature enough to understand we may all see challenges. Was I wrong? When I hear complaints, it seems maturity is less common than I thought.
Joel Metzger, the guy with two canes