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WHINE AND CHEESE

4 December 2003

I haven’t really mentioned my arm much lately, except in passing, but I’m going to allow myself one entry to piss and moan and feel sorry for myself and then get on with it.

Read my lips: I. am. tired. of. hurting!

Those dealing with chronic pain on a daily basis may feel free to scoff and tell me I don’t know what real pain is. I know that.

But this dull, aching pain has become my daily companion and I really, really don’t like it. Obviously I am not going to be joining any S&M club any time soon.

The doctor says I’m coming along fine and that my x-rays look good and that I don’t need to come back to see him any more (I guess the 4 minutes he spent with me cut severely into his daily schedule)

So it’s just a question of time and patience. But there are times when I just wish I could hang the darn thing up on a tree limb outside somewhere and get rid of it for a bit.

It’s not that it’s intense; it’s not that it’s unbearable; it’s just that it’s unremitting. It hurts when I pour water into the coffee pot to brew the morning coffee. It hurts when I reach up to take anything off a high shelf. It hurts when I lift anything that weighs more than a few feathers. It hurts when I reach out to pull the blankets over the mattress when I make the bed. It hurts when I try to carry laundry down or upstairs. It hurts when I sit here typing for awhile. It hurts when I try to slice anything with resistance (like an onion or a potato). It hurts when I try to mop the floor. It hurts when I try to put on a bra in the morning. It hurts when I brush my teeeth.  It hurts when I ride my bike. It hurts when I scrub anything (bad for someone who has become a born-again cleaner).

We’re not talking serious hurt here. We’re talking niggling ache and at times, for example, when you trip over the dog (which only happens 2 or 3 times a day) and you instinctively reach out to brace myself in case you fall, there is a sharp pain that travels up my arm and into my shoulder, which makes the unremitting pain a little more sharp for half an hour or so.

I took a huge load of sheets and towels down to the homeless shelter earlier this week. I asked for help carrying them in from the car because carrying something heavy hurts my arm. The woman there asked what the problem was and I told her I’d dislocated my shoulder. Turns out she had dislocated her shoulder some years ago (when you have a "condition," be it a dislocated shoulder, or pregnancy, or whatever, suddenly all sorts of people come out of the woodwork to share their own experiences with the same condition. I swear half the people in this town have had dislocated shoulders–and have recovered, which is comforting!)

"It’s frustrating," she said, "how you’ll go along and it will seem to be getting better and then all of a sudden it starts giving you fits again."

That was the most comforting thing I’d heard in a long time. I swear this shoulder felt better in Australia. I don’t know when it started bothering me a lot again, but it has slowly been getting worse, or my perception of it is that it is that it has slowly gotten worse. (Of course, I wasn’t doing heavy duty cleaning in Australia either and there could be an exercise component here. I remember when I was seeing the physical therapist and she told me "if it hurts, you’re doing too much." Maybe carrying several boxes of books a few weeks back was not the smartest thing in the world to do!)

Everyone told me when I did this to myself that it would take a good year before it would be back to normal again. It will only be six months in a few days, so I’m 6 months shy of "getting back to normal again" so I shouldn’t be quite so impatient. I should remember back to when I couldn’t move it at all and realize how far I’ve come.

But every so often when I get those jabs of pain, I just wish the whole thing would go away. I realize that I am using this as an excuse to become a marshmallow. I need to push myself to get back to the gym again, but I hold back because it hurts. I’m becoming a wimp.

If there is an up side to it, I’ve been totally left-sided all my life. My right hand was useless, except as a helper tool. I’m becoming quite ambidextrous these days.

I try not to whine about it, because on a scale of 1-10, I’m about at -0.5 in the serious pain department, but I’m getting very tired of the whole thing.

And I won’t mention it here ever, ever again. Maybe.

PHOTO OF THE DAY

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A bouquet at the local supermarket.  Lovely fall colors.

 


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Weight Lost to date:  55.6 lbs

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Created 12/04/03