The following is a transcript from a recent telephone conversation with my mother.
Me: Mom, there's something we need to talk about.
Me: I just saw my podiatrist.
Me: I have something of a bone to pick with you.
Mom: What is it?
Me: I asked him about the duck walk.
Mom: Oh, dear.
Me: Listen, Mom, Dr. Lowery says I was born with it. That it's in my bone structure.
Mom: I see.
Me: Mom, God made me this way. There's nothing you or I or anyone could consciously do to change my behavior. All that time you spent trying to correct my steps--
Mom: I was just trying to help you to be a normal boy.
Me: Normal? Mom, I was who I was, and I am who I am. This is all the normal you're going to get out of me. I can't change. All I have ever wanted was for you to love me for who I was, not for how I walked.
Mom: Couldn't you at least try to point your toes straight ahead when you walk?
Me: I did not choose this, and I couldn't possibly choose to walk any differently. Believe me, if I could have chosen my gait, it would certainly not have been that of a duck: heels in, toes out. I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy. The stares, the guffaws, the mockery—it's not been an easy road. (lengthy pause) But, it is a road I must continue to travel as courageously as I possibly can, knowing full well that pain will surely follow me all of my days.
Mom: You can't control it?
Me: I've tried. Honest, I have.
Mom: What about a good therapist?
Me: You're missing the point.
Mom: You're saying this is genetic?
Me: Yes, Mom, that's what I'm trying to tell you.
Mom: If you have kids, are there going to be little ducks waddling around the house?
Me: Yes, Mom, and I hope you'll love them, independent of their manner of locomotion.
Mom: I'll try.
Me: That's all I ask.
Originally Posted: Tuesday, May 6, 2007
(Then) Curent Mood: (pre)determined