accessibility · inclusiveness · injury

Three stories about my knee brace

Story 1. I met a woman at the university in the Starbucks line with a bright red knee brace. I thought of my friend and co-blogger Martha Muzychka who said she’d get a bright red one if she had to have one. We chatted about the relief of knee pain, surgical alternatives, and joint replacement. She’d already had hip replacement and sounded like she wanted to avoid more surgery for awhile. She talked about lifting weights and we shared stories of leg strengthening exercises that leave the knee out of it.

Story 2. I’m still wondering why people are aghast at the knee brace and instantly see it as a bad thing. I now have some inkling of how people with wheleechairs feel about that reaction. I’ve had some many versions of this conversation.

Other person: OMG you’re wearing a knee brace. That’s horrible. When can you stop wearing it?

Me: Look at my terrific knee brace. I’ve got zero knee pain when wearing it. Watch me hop on the injured leg.

Other person: Oh.

Story 3. I was walking to the CBC the other day asking Front Street in Toronto and had to navigate my way through a crowd of baseball fans. A very happy young male Blue Jays fan says “Hey lady with the knee brace. I got one too. Up top. High five.”

Such polite sports fans. #Bluejays
What’s the brace about anyway?

Samantha Brennan's photo.

3 thoughts on “Three stories about my knee brace

  1. I wore a variety of braces in my childhood and teens, from about age 10 to age 19. When I wore custom-molded braces as a child, no one ever brought them up in public–they were studiously ignored. But when I started wearing a brace that looked more like yours after surgery, random strangers immediately started assuming that I was an able-bodied person with an injury, and asking me what had happened and when I’d get it off. In fact, I had substantially less mobility when I was wearing the more “normal” looking brace, because I was recovering from major surgery. But the style of the device made a real different in how I was read.

    I like the idea of a bright red brace! If I ever have to get another, I’ll probably go that route–something with some style.

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