By the time I made it to the front of the line, I felt like I’d run a marathon. Frank’s compassionate eyes met mine and I knew he didn’t recognize me. I didn’t mind though, in fifteen years I’d changed a lot.
I gathered all my strength, but I only managed a whisper. “Hi Frank, do you remember me? It’s David Meigs.” Ok, I don’t remember exactly what was said, but it was something close to it.
His eyes were mingled recognition and sorrow. “David Meigs! It’s been so long. What’s happened to you?”
“They think it’s the same thing Dudley Moore had, but nobody knows for sure.”
“I’m sorry to hear that.” And I could tell he meant it.
“Frank, I need to ask your forgiveness for letting you and everyone down back then.”
“What? It’s ok, don’t worry about it Dave. God forgave that a long time ago. Let it go.”
He wrapped his arms around me and said a prayer. It felt so good. A ton of unresolved garbage lifted off my shoulders. Then I told him that I’d written a book. His face was a Polaroid of the “sure kid” look he gave me back in 76.
I explained to him about the day when my confusion lifted and God told me to write the book. I told him how I wrote it for my children, and what I hoped it would mean to them.
Then I asked his forgiveness again for not writing the book all those years ago. How writing just never felt right, like it would have been disloyal after all he did for me. As it left my lips, I realized how silly it was. Another weight lifted off my shoulders.
We said our farewells and I turned to leave. Forget the walker; I was dancing on the clouds. I didn’t even care that I did a face plant before getting out the door. Nothing was going to steal my joy.
Little did I know that in three weeks I could throw away my walker forever!
On Monday, we’ll wrap it up with my healing.