Which would you rather lose, a hand or a foot?

Okay. So we’ve almost been here before. Twice.

Being able to keep my sexy legs would be a bonus. And not having to worry quite as much the pleasure I get from moving my arms does make this a different proposition. Limbs are different to appendages. Hands and feet feel different.

I think I’d still end up where I did before though. My hands are a much more direct interface with the world, so I’d probably rather keep those as they are. I imagine it’s easier to find a prosthetic that will roughly to the the job of a foot, and then relearn how to walk to fit it. Balance is already not my strong point, so I do think it would cause problems, but its much easier to deal with than having to relearn how to do just about everything, especially with a reduced functional range.

Hands are crazy. So many elements going into one bit of body. Write now I barely noticed them tapping and bending and scuttling across the keyboard. How to type is locked in the muscle memory. I’m barely even thinking of the individual letters as I type. I think in words and my hands seem to know how to translate that into movement. It works.

My feet probably do some pretty useful things. I mean, if you look at how top heavy a human being is, the fact that we stay upright is pretty impressive. The toes don’t seem particularly nimble, but they are part of a structure that adapts and adheres to the world around it. It’s a tragedy that most people bind them up so completely. But again, this shows that we can probably better adapt to using a less functional version of.

I’m being a bit light-hearted about this, and that’s probably insensitive. Martin, who asked this question, is currently sitting in a hospital ward with a ripped up hand, apparently opposite someone who has just had an amputated foot. It looks like Martin is going to be okay. And the guy on the other side is definitely alive, which is always good. It’s not the end of the world, but its a horrible thing to go through.

I like to hope, that my light-heartedness would be true in reality. I like to hope that I’d show some true, deep adaptability. The world can throw a lot of things at you, and with a medical structure on hand, you can survive and move on. Life changing limb loss is a reality. It’s probably depressing and terrifying at times, but equally, you get to carry on your life.

One of the big lessons of life is that things change and you can adapt.

Bear that in mind when contemplating grave loss of any kind. You are a creature living in a strange world on a tiny planet spinning through a universe that knows nothing but change. You can keep on moving, dreaming, living and loving.

So do.

Illustration by Martin, with a gruesomely injured hand.

Everybody please bid him (and any other injured people) prompt wellness.


About Alabaster Crippens

Joiner of Dots. Player of Games. Unreliable Narrator. Dancing Fool.
This entry was posted in Questions by Martin, Special Guest Illustrations. Bookmark the permalink.

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