Sunday, April 14, 2013

Never Say Never

I know it's a bit cliched. I should have known better, though. I learned very early in my life that the expected isn't something I should ever expect. I learned to hope and pray for the best possible scenario, but to prepare, and prepare well, for the worst possible scenario. Some confuse this with being pessimistic. That's so very far from the truth, at least with me it is. if I fail to prepare for the worst, then I am unable to deal with it in any way.

A little under eight years ago I had surgery on my left foot. At that point, I had fractured three times in three years. My podiatrist at the time, Dr. Russo, and I were under the impression that this would help to correct my gait (along with physical therapy, of course). If my gait could be corrected. the possibility of another fracture would decrease. He removed some joints but didn't remove the big joint in my big toe. I was only 29 at that time and we wanted to see if we could correct it, but keep that big joint. He removed three joints in my middle three toes and fused those bones together. While the healing took longer than anyone would have liked it to, the surgery seemed to to be a success.
I didn't fracture my foot again for five years. That seemed like a win to me.

In 2010, I fractured my third metatarsal. I was in a walking cast (the boot) for about four months. At the time, we were pretty sure the fracture happened because I was favoring my right knee. Now, I'm not sure if it was the right knee messing up my left foot, or my left foot messing up my right knee.
In 2011 I had a synovectomy and some other surgical stuff done to my right knee. About a week before that, I fractured my left foot again. At this point, I was using a cane for both my right knee and my left foot. My balance was shot and i was in enough pain to last me for a while. After the knee surgery, it took another three months for my foot to heal.

In August of 2012, I fractured my third metatarsal again. While I was in the boot, I somehow managed to fracture two other bones in my left foot (the middle and lateral cuneiforms). This type of fracture is relatively rare, and usually only happens when something has been done to a metatarsal. The fact that it happened while I was being treated for a metatarsal injury was the only typical thing about this break. When they did yet another MRI on the left foot, they found swelling in the bones (not the joints, the bones) and some smallish bone spurs. That's when they put a short leg cast on and I got to use crutches for two months. In the middle of winter. in Central New York. Everyone should try this at least once in their lifetime.
First day of cast

My boys and miss adeline

I find it awesome that my converse matched my cast shoe :)

After the cast was removed, I was still in a lot of pain, so another MRI was ordered. They couldn't see anything new. Still with the bone spurs and additional swelling (now in my ankle as well). I was referred to a Lower Extremity Ortho. While I was waiting the few weeks to be seen by him, I found myself praying and asking for prayer for a resolution. A way to get rid of, at least, a little of the pain. I just want to be in the amount of pain I was in until last August. So that's what I got. A resolution.
I will be having another surgery. This time a Complex Forefoot Reconstruction. It's pretty much the same surgery I had done before, just more extensive. They will be removing more joints, including that big toe joint. They will be fusing more bones and shaving off some bone spurs. If other stuff is found while they are in there, they will try to fix that as well. They will be staying away from my ankle for now. If I'm still having trouble with that after this surgery, there is talk about ankle surgery, possible replacement. Again, I'm really young for this sort of thing, but if it needs to happen, it will.

When I had that first foot surgery, I said I would never have another foot surgery again. It hurt. Bad. Almost as bad as the jaw surgery I had when I was 16. I understand the necessity though. I haven't had a foot that allowed me to walk without pain for quite some time. I have an eight year old who needs my body to be working. So I'm diving in again. I have confidence in my doctor to do well with the surgery and any surprises that may pop up. I have confidence in myself, that I will be able to do what needs to be done in the healing process. I have the most confidence in my husband and son to help out with all the extra stuff at home for just a little while longer.

I don't yet know when the surgery will take place, but I'll keep everyone updated. Once again I ask for prayer and happy thoughts. Praying that this surgery will do what it's supposed to, so i can do what I feel I'm supposed to.

Looks like my garden reconstruction will have to be held off for just a little while longer...

Friday, March 22, 2013

Damn That Rodent!!!

March 22nd. It's spring, right?????!!!! Not so, here in the great white north. We're supposed to get about 5 inches more of the cold white stuff before tomorrow morning.

The crocuses and the daffodils don't understand that they can't come out to play yet. I've got green sprouts coming up all over my yard. I actually find myself excited to go out in my yard and clean it up. We just need to get above 45 or so before I get my crazy butt out there to play.

Anybody know of a great kneel-er or something for me to use? Since my knee surgery, I'm unable to put any weight on my right knee while kneeling. So I need something really soft for support. Last year it wasn't an issue, since I was out of commission for most of the summer because of the kidney stone issues and the broken foot and whatnot. But this summer, I plan to get out there and absorb all the vitamin D I possibly can! So, any advice on cool tools or useful aids for people with arthritis or other conditions that make gardening a little more difficult would be most welcome! Also any advice on how to clean up a 60 year old yard and all the stuff that comes along with it would be welcome as well!!!

Monday, March 11, 2013

March 19th already???

March 19th is quickly approaching. What's the big deal you ask? Well, it marks a year since the moving truck brought all of our stuff to our lovely yellow house and we began living here. It was also the start of a very hard season in the lives of the Syracuse Stocks.
On March 23rd, 2012 Geoff went into the hospital due to an Acute Intermittent Porphyria attack. After a week of him on hardcore medication and being mostly asleep and not being able to be touched by anyone due to the pain, he was released and told to up his carbs and protein and to take it easy. I'm pretty sure he's just getting back to normal now.
On May 6th, 2012, I was admitted to the same hospital one floor below where my husband had been. I was having more trouble with kidney stones and one had gotten stuck in scar tissue and required surgery. unfortunately, with my limited healing ability, I was in the hospital on copious amounts of pain killers (IV, Patch, and oral) and iv antibiotics and fluids, for about a week and a half. This included mothers day. I also got to call my sister in law and tell her I wouldn't be able to make it to her wedding on the 19th (I was a bridesmaid). The docs said no travelling (plus, when released, I couldn't move without pain until the removed the stent). But not to worry, my two boys will still be there!!!
I was released on the 17th. The day I got home, I overheard Geoff talking to someone. Turns out, he was talking to his doctor. It seems the stress of my hospitalization triggered another episode for my hubby. Thank goodness, he was able to stay out of the hospital this time, just had to go in for numerous infusions. But guess what, no travelling for him either. So, he called his sister and had to tell her (with some tears in his eyes) that the Syracuse Stocks would NOT be represented at her wedding.
By July, my pain was gone, Geoff seemed to be pretty OK and we were getting things unpacked (FINALLY) at our house.
Beginning of August, I broke my foot and got to wear the boot again. During the boot wearing time I broke my foot in two other places. I got a real cast and crutches Mid November.I got the cast off the end of January and the boot back on. No more boot the middle of February. Referred to a lower extremity orthopedist.
Through all this my liver enzyme levels have been REALLY fluctuating and I've been taken off of numerous medications for the rheumatoid arthritis, I've passed another kidney stone (the first time that didn't require any medical intervention, except pain killers). Geoff's stuff has fluctuated. We've traveled a couple times to see family and Michael has had ups and downs with school.
But we are an awesome family and the three of us support each other and laugh and cry and joke together..
We truly are blessed. W have our family, we are alive, we have a lovely home. Our little family became bigger with the addition of a Brittany named Spot. So now the Syracuse Stocks consists of a Mom, a Dad, a Son, a Dog and a Cat. We are truly blessed. That's what I keep thinking of. With everything that has happened, we have what we need and what we love.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

So, the DSM-5 has decide to add Somatic Symptom Disorder to their gigantic book of Mental Disorders. This is a huge deal, and not in a good way. Please read this article and share with anyone you can. Thanks!!!

Monday, January 21, 2013

The power of pronouns | OdeWire

The power of pronouns | OdeWire

This is an awesome article. One of the many reasons I journal and attempt to blog is because it actually makes me feel better!

Life Does NOT Suck

It doesn't, really. I realized after giving a summary of the events of the last 15 years of my life to a friend I haven't spoken to since high school, that my life, on the outside, really seems a little bleak. I promise you, it is anything but.
Yes, I have gotten new, relatively serious, medical diagnoses, I have lost very dear loved ones, some very dramatic events have occurred to other dear loved ones, but I'm still here.

I am married to an AMAZING man, have and awesome kid, have people who love me beyond measure. Those loved ones I've lost? I have millions of great memories of them to tie me over till I see them again. The medical stuff, while not curable, is treatable. I have made many new friends that will always have my back, and have welcomed back friends that weren't in the picture for awhile.