Yesterday we had our first experience walking through the Assiniboine Forest.   For my wife and I it was an opportunity to walk our senior black lab some place she hadn’t explored before.   My recent knee surgery and the arthritis in our pups feet dictated the pace of the walk and her need to stop and smell everything, the dog not my wife.   The park was busier then we had expected for a weekday morning, young families out getting fresh air and exercise, runners, dog walkers and bird watchers.   We crossed the path of one bird watcher on the hunt for an owl.

Later as we sat on a bench resting my knee, taking a few minutes to people watch and take in the sounds of the Forest, our bird watcher rolled by, he was driving one of those electric scooters.  We asked him if he had any luck finding his owl.  He said he hadn’t.  He noticed I was carrying my camera, and that started a long conversation about our mutual interest in photography.  Turns out both of us were fairly new to the hobby but it was clear that he had far more experience already. He shared his story on how he became interested in photography after losing both his legs below the knees to an illness and that his prosthetic legs and scooter allowed him to get around so he can take his pictures.

Often when I write, it starts from a point of frustration or pain and somehow I am able to work through the process until I have a piece that I am happy with.  There are other times I’m writing when an idea comes to me and it will not leave me alone.  Usually I have to sit and write, otherwise I’m just not able to retain the idea, I have lost many story concepts because of my memory loss.  This story is compelling me to finish, so here I sit, iPad in hand.  Flashes of lines kept popping in my head last evening.   My knee woke me twice last night, the first time as I’m trying to stretch out my leg to release the muscle and relieve the pain, more lines to the story come to me.  Eventually I fell back to sleep but that didn’t last, because at 5 o’clock there I was awake again, knee and calf in pain.  Before I knew it, I’m writing this story in my head again, and it turns out what it really is, is a story about writing poetry.


How can I complain about the pain in my leg after I met a man with no legs?

How can I complain about my child’s disability when I know of couples that can not have children?

How can I complain about my finances when there are those that have none?

How can I complain about my spouse when a neighbour lost his to cancer?

How can I complain about having to stay at home when thousands put themselves in danger every day?

How can I complain about my home when so many are on the streets?

How can I complain about my freedom when others have none?

How can I complain about the pain in my leg after I met a man that walks with no legs?


Inspired by Ricki the bird watcher.

11 thoughts on “How?

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  1. We can find the good in our personal situations if we just have a moment to truly reflect on the blessings in our lives. 🙂

  2. I like the way you were able to shift your own perspective in this post. Thank you for the insights. And I hope you soon have less knee pain – the timing of reading this is ironic, as one of my knees has really been hurting me again lately…

  3. Thank you for sharing Blair. This made me appreciate all those wonderful things that I have too, that can often be taken for granted. Sounds like a lovely day you had in the forest.

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