Walking the Walk

My grandmother loved to walk. When I was a kid (prone to wandering off in public), she would insist on holding my hand forcing me into a half skip-walk to keep from having to run to keep up with her. And when the arthritis in her hip got so bad that even sitting was an effort, she went in for surgery to have it replaced. For almost another 10 years she walked the feet off of me; only now I was a grown man.

What I didn’t know, what members of her generation are so good at hiding, was that the pain wasn’t entirely gone. The arthritis was already working on her other hip. Now in her late 80’s, my grandmother’s had to end her walking days. She’s decided pragmatically that the cost and inconvenience of another surgical procedure wouldn’t be worth the mobility for her remaining years. I have to respect her decision, but my heart mourns and howls in protest to see my Gran –once a cooking and gardening dervish around her house– struggle to a climb flight of stairs.

I pray that, through the Arthritis Society’s work, ways can be found to ease my Gran’s way around her home and neighbourhood, and to prevent others from having to give up activities they love so much.

On Sunday, May 15, the team here at GMS is participating in the Walk to Fight Arthritis. We’re raising pledges to support over four million Canadians who live with the pain and disability caused by arthritis. With your pocketbook, your feet, or your voice, we hope you’ll consider supporting this important cause.

Learn more at the Arthritis Society’s website.

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