My thumb stopped working and I feel privileged.
For the past two weeks, all I can think about are the privileges I enjoy. I have been brought to my knees. I have been overcome with tears and sobs. I have been infused with sorrow and rage. As my brain and my heart weigh and measure and multiply just how much privilege I have been gifted in these 43 years, I cannot think of very much else. It is an unfathomable calculation.
And in the midst of it all, my right thumb – a piece of me so small and so easily taken for granted – decided to stop working. Well, to be more accurate my thumb kept getting stuck and making a horrible clicking sound but was essentially useless for all thumb-related necessities. And just so you know, most necessities require a thumb.
But it has made me think about privilege at every level. The microcosms and incredible scope of it all. Those who feel incessant fatigue and a tingling in their fingers but don’t have healthcare to understand why. The countless who’ve been diagnosed with MS but can’t afford the drugs they’ve been prescribed. The thousands who would beg to have a thumb be their biggest concern. I am so grateful for every body part and how intricately they all work together. Sometimes in harmony, sometimes not.
I am privileged.
I am privileged to grow up with access to great education and a trust toward police.
I am privileged to vote. I am privileged to jog and drive and breathe and live without fearing incarceration or death.
I am privileged to have limbs and fingers that function. I am privileged to walk.
Sometimes the greatest perspective can only come from indescribable loss. Sometimes all it takes is a thumb.