Monday, February 20, 2012

Long Overdue

I know, I know. Let me start at the beginning, with my steroid injection last month. I was sitting on the table, surrounded by the supplies, pretending not to be nervous (needles, man! In my JOINT!) when Dr. McGorgeous walked in. And asked why I hadn't just given myself the injection. He then noticed that no one left a needle on a tray and commented "Smart nurse". Okay, so apparently I have a bit of a reputation in his practice. I guess other people don't take their own sutures out and ask for videotapes of their surgeries. I don't understand why not. So, because Dr. McGorgeous is literally the best doctor in the entire world, he starts to numb my ankle with some freezing spray. And then this exchange occured:

Dr: Acckk! Ow! I got some on my knee! This is really cold!!
Me: I'm sorry this is so uncomfortable for you
Dr.: I AM uncomfortable!!!! Okay, I'm putting the needle in now

So I got some steroids. And he left for five minutes. No sooner did he walk out the door than this WAVE of heat courses through my entire body. It was like being electrified with heat. He comes back as my hot flash is ending, but I'm still holding my hair up off my neck and fanning the sweat off my face. I asked him if this happens to normal people or just me, and he said it was actually pretty common. +1 point for being common! Woot! So then he lets me know that it will hurt a lot tonight, and for the next couple days. And to call his office and let him know how I'm doing in 48 hours. So I wait for the pain and there is nothing. It's as if nothing ever happened. Since I was numb, maybe he didn't even inject me! He just pretended!

Three weeks later I head in for my follow-up and tell him and the resident that the steroid injection never happened. Or at least that's what it felt like. They said this is a good diagnostic clue. Because the steroid never hurt and never helped, not even a little, this pain isn't related to the joint, the bone, or the ligaments. Which led him to diagnose the pain as nerve pain. OMFG, WTF, JFC. So I have nerve pain on both sides of my ankle. Why am I so nerve-y? I don't know- I'm going to ask at my next appointment, which is in.............JULY!!!

Even though I still have nerve pain, it is getting better and manageable. Dr. McGorgeous is hopeful that since I'm only 8 months out from surgery that I still have a whole bunch of healing left to do and the nerve pain will keep getting better. So we are waiting for 5 entire months before I have another followup. You guys. This is big.

And even bigger are the parts of my life that have been coming back. I have a gym membership again. I only go once a week to do some strength training. I've lost so much muscle in the last 3 years. I'm not trying to be a hero, just trying to be safe and cautious and do my best. My every day normal life is getting better- I don't dread taking the garbage out or checking the mail or grocery shopping like I used to. I have quite a few days during the week when I'm on my feet for 15 hours. I'd say 80% of the time I get home and DON'T have that rock hard swelling I've been so used to. I'm becoming more optimistic the more time passes, but I am also very, very realistic about this. I'm only 8 months in to an 18 month recovery. There's still so much time for things to go wrong, and things have always gone wrong for me. I'm not celebrating my "recovery" just yet. But I am celebrating each milestone I reach that I thought was gone for good.