Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Practicing medicine without a license

Okay, I don't really practice medicine without a license, but it is nice to get a confirmation of a dx that I made on myself from someone who actually has the license. :-) What I suspected about my hip was trochanteric bursitis, and that is what it turned out to be. I told him what I was doing for it, and he said that I was doing all the right things. So, hopefully, continuing to do the right things will aid the relief of the pain. The doc took x-rays just to be sure of the dx and, for some reason, he had a comparision x-ray from 2001 (I cannot for the life of me remember why he had my hip x-ray'd then...) so he could measure the cartilage. There was no decrease in the cartilage and there were "no significant signs of arthritis", though it did appear that I was getting a bone spur. He actually let me see the x-rays, which was kewl. I think the fact that I was down 7 pounds from my visit in March is what pre-empted any "lose weight *finger shake*" lecture I might otherwise have gotten. Yes, I know that losing weight will dramatically help this problem, and that is one of the reasons I'm being so diligent about it. The past coupld of weeks have been kind of bad weeks, but I'm trying to be OP more than I'm not and that has to count for something. I've been to the gym more lately, but I'm trying to work up to my planned 4-5 days/week. I walked on the treadmill yesterday (and the workout kicked my butt) and did my PT exercises. I can always tell that I'm doing them correctly when they actually hurt a little. I'm trying to be careful to keep it in the realm of "this hurts because it needs to stretch" and not let it go into the realm of "this hurts because I'm damaging myself". It's a fine line some days, especially since I have a pretty high pain threshold due to living with Fibro for almost 10 years. I've made the promise to myself, and I'm putting it here in writing (as I've done [or will do if I haven't] in my paper journal) so I'm accountable... if, after about 6 weeks of diligent PT exercises and losing more weight I'm still having pain in that hip, I'll go back and let the Dr. do a corticosteroid injection. I was willing to have him do it on Friday, but he's not much on invasive therapy if he can treat a problem with more conservative therapies (like the PT & OTC anti-inflammatories). I've replaced my shoes, so that should help, but the PT exercises are really going to make the difference, I believe.

As for the spot on my arm, it was actually nothing to worry about. *whew* It's a capillary hemangioma, and the doc says they can pop up anywhere at anytime. His daughter apparently had one on her face. The magic phrase "these never turn into skin cancer" came out, and I almost started crying right there in the exam room. Even though it turned out to be "nothing", I'm still being careful to wear sunscreen and my hat when I'm outside. I'm prolly gonna turn into the sunscreen police, but I'll feel justified if I'm always careful about it myself. :-)

I was up 1.6 pounds last WI. Somehow I don't think I've gotten all of that off, but I'll be happy with some kind of loss, even if it's less than a full pound. This is a lifetime commitment and diligence with the food I put in my mouth will not end when I get to goal. I didn't gain it overnight and I won't lose it that way, but the loss halting completely will kinda take the wind out of my sails. Oh, well, it's not good to think negatively about these things, so I'll just see what the scale has in store for me tomorrow AM. They had to move the big block @ the doctor's, so that was a good scale experience for me.

Monday, April 02, 2007


Life is pretty stressy right now. At the end of last year, we though we were going to have to pack up and move and did not know where we might move to. Then, a very dear friend passed leaving a huge hole in my heart. Recently, another friend passed, also leaving a hole in my heart, though perhaps not as big because I didn't know him as well. However, his presence in my life will be greatly missed.

In the midst of all that (and starting well before), I felt like I was losing myself. I couldn't feel much except that a nervous breakdown was always looming. What I felt was the right thing to do at the time was to close myself off from other people because I didn't want to drag them down the rabbit hole with me. What I neglected to take into consideration is that there are some folks connected to me in such a way that closing myself off to them didn't keep them from going down the rabbit hole with me; it only succeeded in not allowing us to cling to each other in the crisis. The rational, thinking, coherent person I'm re-becoming would have known that was a bad idea and would have figured out ways around it. However, at the time, it was what felt like the thing to do because I wanted nothing more than to protect the people I love.

Unfortunately, the only thing I have succeeded at is alienating those who love me. I'm trying to re-establish lines of communication but am having trouble getting past the hurt feelings. I honestly don't know what else to try except show that I'm trying to not be the person I was for those many months, that I want folks in my life again, and that I am truly sorry for the pain and hurt I have caused. I was hurting, too, but like the wounded animal I was, I couldn't see past my own hurt. Frankly, I'm still hurting, but I'm willing to try to mend fences so that we can all work through this hurt together. I only hope that people are willing to do that instead of just jump my case for not letting them in the first place. I don't know if I have it in me to keep trying to mend fences if other people won't take a couple steps forward, too, and keep holding me at arm's length. Perhaps, it's my karma because that is what I was doing to them, but I do need some give & take to keep giving.

On top of the emotional stress, I've discovered something that could potentially be a problem physically. Because one of the friends that passed away died from metastisized skin cancer, I've been careful to wear my suscreen and stay out of the sun as much as possible. However, I wasn't always this careful. Now that it's short-sleeves weather, I have noticed a spot on my shoulder that is a bit troubling to me. I've been keeping an eye on it and it hasn't gotten any bigger or changed shape or anything like that, but it's also not exactly "normal" looking. So, without being prompted, I decided that I need to go let my doctor look at it, just to be sure. I am really hoping that I'll hear that it's nothing to be worried about, but if, Gods forbid, it is something, catching it early is never a bad thing. So, good thoughts towards quick, accurate diagnosis are graciously accepted.

I also figured that, since I'll be there anyway, I'll have him take a look @ my left hip. I have my 'picions what it is and what I can do to treat it, but it will be good to rule out any of the potentially dangerous problems that it might be. I'm going to have to put my foot down about PT, though because I simply don't have a way to get there, unless he knows of a PT who has evening (and I mean after 6:30) appointments or who can see me only on Saturday. Otherwise, I'm SoL. If it's what I think it is, I already have PT exercises to do for it and I'll keep doing those once I get his much more highly educated opinion. :-) I may also have to switch from the treadmill to swimming exclusively for my cardio, but that's okay. That's one of the reasons we joined a gym with a pool. I'm just hoping it's not a problem with the skeletal parts of my hip, because the only thing you can really do @ that point is surgery.

Anyway. I'm still managing to stay on program thru all this stress. I just hope that continues.