The Underdog Story
How many of you stood in line to collect government cheese? That used to be a joke I would hear from those that were part of the “have” culture, but being raised in the “have not” culture made the line for government cheese a reality. The cheese was a brick of cheddar cheese. Picture the industrial size that you would buy from Sam’s club or Costco, but it wasn’t near as good. We had to use the old wire cutter in order to slice it. We would race home and start cutting the cheese (not like that) with the wire cutter and the kids in the neighborhood would be full. I never told my dad this story because he would’ve been upset with us taking handouts.
That’s were I grew up. Our playground was a parking lot. Our games of choice were whiffle ball and if you hit the taped up ball over the roof of the corner tavern, it was a home run. We played tag in a blocks radius, which takes me to my next story.
I was always the heavy one. I can remember going to Sears as a kid and heading straight to the Husky section. That’s right…we had a section named just for us big kids. Men’s, women’s, kid’s…husky. Yeah, that wouldn’t fly today.
Being the “big kid”, I was always “it” when playing tag. I wasn’t as fast as my more athletic brothers and would only be able to tag them if they let me.
One day while playing tag, I was chasing my brother and out of nowhere a car hit me and ran me over. It could have been the end of me. I should have been up in the clouds playing a harp. Luckily, I was the big kid and my doctor reminded me of this when I was finally taken to the doctor after the accident.
He said (in a Chinese voice): “If you weren’t so fat, you could have been seriously hurt”
Looking back now, it’s a funny story, but it wasn’t then.
When my dad got home he only had one phrase for me; “did you learn anything”. Mind you I’m 5 at the time! My dad is a Vietnam Veteran. Tough to the core, but a heart of gold. Whatever didn’t kill us would make us stronger and there had to be a learning lesson in there somewhere.
Needless to say, I had to overcome a lot of challenges growing up in an area where the anticipated outcomes were jail or cemetery.
This is what makes the story so great. I overcame! I believe that anyone can overcome with the right mind set.
To other PT’s the title of doctor is one that can be spoken of only quietly in dark corners. I am proud of it. I am more so proud to have been named among the greats this year. Updoc media named me among the top 40 influential physical therapists of 2017.
I’ve come a long way from the husky kid collecting government cheese.
Thanks to the guys at Updoc and thanks for reading.