Yes, college can happen after foot drop

Emergency surgery for foot drop had me hobbling around in spring 2013. I was finally cleared to drive in May, but only after months of physical therapy and doctor visits. It's been a long haul. Flash forward to 2014, college classes and foot drop. Younger students seem to skip around campus with backpacks are defiantly slung over one shoulder. It's a fast-paced frenzy to the education finish line that they intend to win.

I, in contrast, am a turtle racing with the rabbits. Despite a nearby handicapped space, getting to the building takes a few minutes. Foot drop has seen to it that backpacks have no place in my life anymore.

My books are pulled along behind me. I can use a messenger bag for a couple of classes and my handbag for one of them. The system isn't as convenient as the backpack but it works for me.

In just a few hours my foot feels too big for my shoe. Leg cramps, the unexpected challenge, begin after sitting too long. Foot drop seems to be my body's way of scoffing at the notion that I, after a break of 24 years, should return to college. "Take that!" My body seems to say as though mocking my attempts.

The youthful college students are adjusting to this slow-moving, middle aged woman who often out-answers them in class. Walking may be slow but my grades are good. Glances of sympathy have given way to looks of solidarity. Our discussions center around the usual college chatter of financial aid woes, grades or bemoaning class assignments. 

At the end of class my textbooks get jammed back into my rolling case. Foot drop may be trying to keep score, but this turtle is winning the race! My new college career is my own act of defiance. It's not easy but it's working. Last year my foot was relearning how to do its job. This year, I'm walking around a college campus (albeit slowly.) I can hardly wait to see the improvements that next year will bring. (Or heck, even next semester for that matter!)

Foot drop? Take that!