Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Pain

I've decided that if people can't be civil and have to hurl insults instead of being able to have an adult conversation, I won't engage. This comes after some lady stooped to low levels on Twitter when I voiced an opinion. I don't remember her name, Abby or Jamie or something. I had never heard of her before a friend of mine tweeted something about her. The lady is a pro-life advocate. The story goes that after she had two abortions, she decided she wanted to tell everyone else they shouldn't have one. That in itself is fine, but I fully believe in freedom of choice. What seems to get lost on people is that saying that doesn't make me pro abortion. 

I have friends who are pro-life and believe in God, and we get along just fine. There's a mutual respect that seems to be lacking when it comes to some hardcore pro-life supporters. 

Anyway, when someone throws out stupid, stupid comment or any other insult or personal attack, I shut the conversation down. It's weird to me that someone who claims to be all about God feels like it's OK to stoop to this kind of level. The whole angry, in your face, aggressive, put words in your mouth style of arguing is upsetting to me, and I would rather do something productive instead of get into it with someone who makes assumptions, doesn't fully read what his or her opponent writes, and can't help but be mean. I will defend myself, but at some point a line must be drawn.

When this lady asked me something about whether or not I believe alcoholics should be able to talk about their experiences or some such nonsense (well, it's really just unrelated, not actual nonsense), I had a feeling things were going to get wacky fast, and they did. No, that's not what I was saying when I simply noted that I think people should be able to choose and find it odd that someone who had the luxury and freedom to do so would want to get involved with and influence someone else's personal choice. Getting abortions and drinking alcohol are not remotely close in terms of anything, really, except they are both legal.

Lately, I've witnessed a lot of crazy internet stuff, from stalkers to trolls to wars of words. I don't even like seeing it. I feel better when I'm helping others. This last thing on Twitter was a good reminder that I need to stay focused on building up those who need help and ignore unkind people I've never met who want to tear others down. I can't believe that makes people feel good.

Enough on that.

Things are improving with my feet, but it has been somewhat slow going. I'm in a better space than when I wrote what follows, but I still need some time to heal. I'm getting answers and seeing both my PT and my doc about the nerve issues.

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When dealing with pain, it's important to stay one step ahead of it, so I have been told. Unfortunately, I'm the type that seems to get three steps behind before I even recognize how bad it is. Plus, nerve pain is tricky to deal with. The sensations range from burning, pins and needles and numbness to stabbing, throbbing blasts of misery that make you want to scream. With nerve pain, it messes up your brain. It's fatiguing, distracting and flat out uncomfortable. I feel like I must look like Bill the cat, because I'm fried from having to deal with all this discomfort.


I learned recently that being susceptible to nerve issues can be genetic. I believe it, because otherwise it would be a strange coincidence that I would develop similar nerve-related issues every time I have an operation on my feet. You might have guessed by now that I'm dealing with more nerve issues than I started with, this time in both feet. Pain aside, my life is going well, especially in terms of my job, which I love and know how lucky I am to have.

The surgeries:

On my left foot, the goal was to decrease the pain I was having with some nerves that were trapped in scar tissue by cutting a section of the nerves higher up on my foot. The surgery went fine, but I ended up having phantom pain when the severed nerve endings kept active. Phantom pain sounds like it's not real pain, but I can assure you that it is. It feels exactly like the nerves are still intact, because they still fire and send signals to the brain. On top of that, I developed more scar tissue from the new incision, and that made for even more trouble. That should all calm down at some point.

The right foot was more complicated, and the result has been far more distressing. My doctor did a tendon release, so that my second toe would go back into its normal position. It was getting a little too friendly with my big toe. Post-op healing was coming along very nicely until about a week ago when all of a sudden, a big ball of scar tissue developed that trapped yet another nerve. In addition, the toe pad tear isn't fixed, which wasn't going to be a problem had the nerve and scar tissue situations not developed. The combination of everything has made it such that I'm developing a hammer toe, and I'm in an incredible amount of pain. My PT helped relieve some of the scar tissue/nerve pain with Graston, though, so I'm grateful for that. I'm just trying to get through each day without giving in too much to the demons in my head.

 My doctor and PT have been great. I'm very happy with both. I still think my doc is one of the best podiatrists in this area. In addition to the genetic component I'm dealing with, there's also the structure of my feet to consider and the healing process in general, which is different for everyone. My healing didn't go as planned this time, even though I was careful about not doing too much too soon. Shit happens, as they say, but I'm managing. I'm present and aware, and I'm working on staying that way.

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Since I wrote that, I got a shot of cortisone and some PT and a tape job that has helped relieve some of the super sharp pain, so things are going more smoothly. 

I still have hope, and that's a good thing. 

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