Adventures of a Forced Migrant Contact Me
“Do you not know how to adjust?”
I often wonder why we are compelled to adjust to the structures and institutions around us rather than have them adjust to our needs. It’s hard — if not impossible — to adjust things like skin color, sexuality, gender, class, certain disabilities, and sometimes even our immigration status. But we are asked to assimilate and acculturate to fit a certain mold.
Who are we serving when we adjust to the establishment? What are we upholding when we acclimate to poor living conditions, lack of basic human rights, a gentrified, hierarchical and capitalist society that is violent to each and every part of our existence?
According to my brilliant chiropractor, my foot pain is the the least of my problems. Everything from my neck to the balls of my feet are out of order. There’s physical trauma and injury to several body parts. Accidents. Bad exercising habits. Too much of something and too little of something else. Life. It’s a physical manifestation of how things around me are always falling apart and how my body is reacting to keeping everything together.
I am out of order. One leg shorter than the other with a pelvis that is tilted up right. My spine doesn’t fall in line. Nerves pinched so they don’t feel pain. Joints clicking loudly and popping out. Feedback mechanisms distorted and dis-functioning. I find it so amusing that even my body has such a rebellious spirit.
There’s beauty in functioning perfectly — functioning in well-behaved, mechanized, controlled, and contrived ways that are expected of us in a capitalist society. But it is so much more beautiful to fall completely apart and not serve any order or ordering. Of course it is going to hurt. They will make sure of it.
Every day is an exercise in walking on shattered glass. Today was much worse.
My feet cannot carry my growing weight. That may or may not be a metaphor.
My heels are constantly throbbing. Sometimes the pain is more intense than other times.
Plantar fasciitis renders me immobile.
It strikes at the very core of my existence.
I am restless. I always have to keep moving forward. If I am on a bus or train and it stops moving, I try to get out. If there is a traffic jam, I try to find another way forward instead of sitting around and waiting for it to clear up. I’ll jump off a bridge and swim if I need to get to where I need to go. And I’d rather break down a wall in my way than negotiate with it.
I don’t know how to sit still and wait.
Stillness scares me; Limbo is petrifying.
The mind wanders when the body cannot move, wandering into a deep dark black hole,
A phantom zone.
I feel the most pain when I am still.
Movement is my savior. To move is to agitate,
to rouse, to stir, to trigger, to migrate.
I lost the ability to run last year.
I can’t walk right now,
so I will just crawl around.
I will just keep pressing forward.