Thursday, March 9, 2017

And The Shoe Says...

Funny thing happened while I was walking through the house the other day. Ummm, maybe not that funny. I didn't trip, lose my balance, stomp, or in any way do anything other than take the normal next step.

But Wham! Pain! Every step hurts. No style of limping eases it. I was even willing to try walking with a cane to see if transferring some of the pressure from the foot to the arm helped. I'd refused a cane after both of my knee replacement surgeries! But now I was willing. Steve dug it out, knowing where it had been stored for the last several years. It almost helped.

I think. Maybe. But after the hike to the bathroom and back, it ached for a while anyway. Each time.

I tried actually wearing my shoes in the house, thinking they'd work something like a walking cast to immobilize the foot, keep whatever had happened from getting any worse. They kinda helped, just so long as I didn't actually do much walking. Yeah, guess how that not-walking part worked.

Two things I didn't try. One was any painkillers. I have almost everything in the house, even leftover good stuff, in addition to a couple large bottles of the ibuprofin I was taking back before knee replacements at a rate of nearly 16 per day. Pills, not bottles. I haven't touched them since I quit all painkillers post surgery. Just aspirin, because you're supposed to have some daily. But no painkillers for this. So when it hurt, my fault. In the balancing act of another hike to the bathroom just for pills, creating pain to ease pain, it just wasn't worth it.

The other thing I didn't do was head for the doctor. Well, it started Sunday, and it just seemed a little over dramatic for the ER. After all, I put up with those knees for years, have always medically ignored rotator cuff tears while they took a couple years to simmer down. So the ER for this?

Then Monday, I talked myself into thinking  it was getting better. Enough so that on Tuesday I worked with Steve to unpack and organize a few more boxes. (Did you know we were still unpacking? Hey: how could you not?) The upshot was there was no comfortable position for sleeping last night. You have to know that was topped of by the dogs needing to go out at 4 AM. Even that wouldn't have been so bad except two seconds out of the door they raced to the fence at full voice to chase away the coyotes on the other side  who were sizing them up for their next snack. It was so noisy the neighbors turned on their lights, just as thrilled to be dealing with the racket as I was. It meant not only that I was up  and yelling at the dogs, but whatever they thought they were out there for was forgotten... until they were back inside later and we were sleeping.

This morning upon waking and hobbling to my bathroom, I decided it was finally time to see what was going on medically. Of course, after the night before, waking happened around 10:30. The necessary shower and breakfast delayed any phone calls till nearly 11:30. My primary doctor doesn't have any x-ray equipment on site, but voicemail said they'd get back to me with their suggestion. My orthopedic surgeon has the equipment, but even if they weren't booked months ahead, don't deal with such minor stuff. But hey, I could look for a podiatrist. Or, shucks, just pop into an urgent care.

Duh! How didn't I think of that? I know exactly where the closest is, in the same building with Steve's primary care doc. How did I get so stupid that that hadn't even occurred to me?

So, quick trip over, quick stack of forms to fill out, hobble down the hall to the scale that magically removes 25 pounds, and into the room where the chair is directly under the blasting cold air vent. What a day to have chosen to believe the weather forecaster when he said for the 7th time in a row that while this day's temperature only approached or hit the low 70s, tomorrow would surely hit the mid to upper 80s, and dressed accordingly, putting away the sweats. On my own behalf, I figured if I did need some kind of cast or boot, shorts were the better choice. But brrrrrrrr!

Then x-rays, 3 views. Every time she told me to hold still, I managed to do so, supressing my urge to giggle. Don't know where that comes from, but it does. The good news is, nothing broken. Or maybe that's the bad news, because tissue damage can be nastier longer. But I needed a special shoe, fastening in several places with Velcro, in order to keep my toes from wiggling so whatever it is can heal.

Hey, my shoes do that already (except when I over-use my feet). Can't I just wear them?


Does this new gismo even have any arch support? I'm well aware of my need for those after dealing with heel spurs for a few years. But nope, they're flat. Oh, and I have to pay because my insurance doesn't.

Next, in comes the sweet young thing with a shoe-thing that has a flat wide board on the bottom that sticks out a full two inches past my toes. At the tightest she can get it, it flops around on my foot, not immobilizing anything, particularly my toes. Useless, plus a major tripping hazard, and I'm quite capable of tripping over my own feet already, thank you. The sweet young thing and I mutually agree to try the next smaller size. After convincing her that she's not cutting circulation if she pulls the straps tighter so it actually works, I decide this is the one. And Whoopee! It's $5 cheaper than the first one!

Now, I'm still wearing it, and will until bed. It's comfy, sort of. Part of me just wants it OFF! Yes, I can still wiggle my toes while wearing it. And walking is only a bit less painful, though the foot doesn't ache after I sit down again. I'm not really sure it's all that helpful, but we'll see. I think the main advantage is that it's highly, clunkily visible to all, announcing to everybody, "Hey looky here: my foot hurts!"

Now to dig out the socks without the holes....

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