The following is an open letter from Derrick Rose’s right knee.
It’s not easy being a knee. When I was younger I wished I was a rib instead. Ribs are simple. Ribs are important. A rib protects the heart and the lungs.
Do you watch Game of Thrones? I watch it with Derrick. He’s had a lot of time to catch up on television shows the last couple of years, and Game of Thrones has quickly become one of his favorites. Think of ribs as members of the Kingsguard.
Ribs are knights, in shiny, white armor, who protect the royal family of organs.
I’m a knee. I’m the guy that carries the royal family around King’s Landing in those little cabins or whatever they’re called. I know they have a proper name, but I don’t know it. I don’t know a lot of things. I’m a knee.
Anyway, I’m the guy carrying the royal family of organs around everywhere they want to go. All I do is take a physical beating and do things I’m not actually meant to do, and when I break down I’m simply replaced. Well, okay, I’m not always replaced, but I am cut open and they stick new things inside me. Things that weren’t there before.
You spend your entire life with one meniscus. You get to know that meniscus. That meniscus knows you. Then, suddenly, you wake up one morning and that meniscus is gone. There’s a whole new meniscus in its place.
And you’re just supposed to get along.
It isn’t fair.
But I didn’t write you today to talk about what isn’t fair, or to talk about Game of Thrones. I wrote you today to respond to Derrick’s latest plans about his possible return. He was at a charity event on Wednesday night, and for just the second time since I was hurt, he talked about his rehab and possible return.
“I haven’t even had a chance to think about it,” he said. “I’m just worrying about my next stage in this process and that’s running right now. I’m on the AlterG (an anti-gravity treadmill). Hopefully be running without it pretty soon.
“I’m not keeping (a return) open. I just said right now I’m not thinking about it. I’m not running yet. When I get off the AlterG, that’s when I’ll consider coming back or not.”
That’s my Derrick. In one sentence he says he’s not thinking about returning and then two sentences later he says that once he’s able to run he’ll think about it. Which means he’s thinking about it. Trust me. I know. While Derrick’s brain only tells me what to do and when to do it, its private thoughts get around well enough.
There are no secrets inside your body.
And it’s no secret that I don’t want to return this year, and yes, I’m scared. My friend meniscus just died, and now I’m just supposed to go back on the court with a new one? A meniscus I haven’t had any chance to build trust with? No thank you.
I need time. Not as much time as the left knee did, mind you, I’m not a pussy. I’m a knee. But, as a knee, I need to be comfortable before Derrick can start abusing me again. And trust me, it’s abuse, though none of you assholes seem to care about what you do to me and knees everywhere.
Oh, you’ll go to Russia to adopt a stray fucking dog to make yourself feel better about a meaningless existence, but fuck me. I’m just part of your body. Sarah McLachlan couldn’t give a shit about me.
Well, I give a shit about me.
I’m never going to be a rib. I know that. What I am is a knee, and I’m a knee that wants to survive as long as I can. In order to do that, I’m going to need more time. I’ve tried to tell Derrick this over the last few weeks, but I don’t know if he’s listening.
That’s why I wrote this letter. If he can’t hear my thoughts, maybe he will read my words. Or, at the very least, maybe somebody who reads these words will let him know how I feel.
Don’t come back this season, Derrick. There’s no point. Let’s all get to know each other a little better and begin anew next year.
Your Right Knee
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