Friday, May 2, 2014

Life is still good, in spite of it all..... a health update

Wow, time flies when you are busy, doesn't it?

It seems like my life hasn't stopped for breath since I took over as office manager here at work last December.  Days are good, but certainly filled with not only ordering, sending out bills and paying them, payroll, phones, the slow progression of getting the office cleaned up and looking nice, and the hardest job of all, keeping track of my local handyman who has a tendency to slip off when you aren't looking!  I was glad when the boss agreed I could hire an assistant (ie: Miya!)  She is learning the ropes as she goes, but has certainly taken a load off of my shoulders so I can focus on the more important aspects of the job.

Lucie, Miya and I started a beginners yoga class last month, and I have been LOVING IT, except for every time I have to get on my knees.  For those who aren't in the know, before we moved back to Washington my knees were beginning to bother me.  Lots of inflammation, pain to the touch below the kneecap, hobbling around sometimes like an old lady.... really not fun.

I even bought a thicker yoga mat to help offset the pain in class, which helped at first even though I was miles slower than anyone else in getting down to the floor and hauling my butt back up off of it afterwards.  Sadly, this last week's session was, literally, hell.  I had to modify stuff and couldn't do any lunges or what I call our "knee poses".  I had decided the day before that enough was enough and had scheduled an appointment with my doctor to see if a shot in the knees would help, as I assumed it was just a case of big-girl arthritis setting in.

Good thing too.

Wednesday I went in and, after the initial exam was told I'd need x-rays so the doctor could see what was going on.. Unfortunately, the clinic's x-ray machine wasn't lining up properly so I did my shuffle over to the adjoining hospital (thank goodness for small town hospitals that aren't miles and miles long!) where I posed for a really nice radiologist.  She laughed at my jokes about capturing my "good side" as I posed for her images, which lightened the mood a lot and made it fun.  Then it was a hobble back over the doctor's office to look at what was sent.

I must say, I have GORGEOUS knees.... oh yeah, oh yeah.  I'd show them to you, but I didn't think to ask for a pdf until after I left. Besides, I can't show you because its my naked skeleton and I don't do nudies!  But I have no problem showing you someone else's kneecap as a reference, so here it is (hey, they put it online for anyone to see!):

Isn't it lovely and ethereal?  Seriously, I really do want to ask my doctor for a copy of my knee shot the next time I am in so I can frame it.  Yes, I know, I am odd... deal with it.

Turns out I do have mild arthritis (its called age kids!) and I still have plenty of space between my bones, so the shot was out.  Its patellar tendinitis, which doesn't really surprise me, since I have tendinitis in several other parts of my body.  I usually always have inflammation somewhere, so I tend to take ibuprofen a lot.

Well, the doc has put me on a steroid pill for 5 days to help kick it down, and prescribed an expensive anti-inflammatory cream to rub on the legs... honestly, even a partial relief of pain would be worth the cost (insurance wouldn't cover it, but I am willing to pay a bit out of pocket in order to nip this in the bud and get my body back on track).  I also bought two Ace bandages to wrap under the kneecap to help support the tendon and you wouldn't believe how much THAT little maneuver has helped to alleviate my pain. Wish I would have thought of that one sooner!

My doctor, as thrilled as she was that I was doing yoga, has put me on a restriction right now... nothing on the knees, no lunges.... nothing that will irritate my condition.  I had to beg to be allowed to go to class and do the bits that I COULD handle, especially once I told her there was only 3 more classes left to this session. Thank goodness the instructor is offering the class again in the fall so I can go through it again once I have this issue under control.

I have also been warned away from stairs, which I am doing to the best of my ability, but I had to admit to her that I live on the second level of our apartment complex.  Richard has been a dear though ever since my knees started bothering me by doing multiple trips up the stairs to bring in groceries so I don't have to go up and down carrying stuff in (really, I wound up with one of the sweetest guys ever!)  Luckily there are only a couple of steps here in the office.

I have two sessions of physical therapy scheduled and then a follow-up with the doctor in 3 weeks, which makes me even happier that Miya is doing as well as she is so I know that the office is being left in good hands while I am running around getting all this done!

I did get a phone call from the doc later Wednesday afternoon though.... of course her first words were "I don't want you to panic".  Uh, okay.  It turns out there is a shadow on the x-ray for my right knee (the worst of the two) so she wants to get me scheduled for a contrast MRI.   It may be nothing, but there may be a mass... odds are if there is something its benign (thank goodness cancer doesn't run in my genetic line).  Heck, I have ovarian cysts all the time and those are benign and harmless (except when they rupture.. ouch!) so I see nothing to get worked up over.

No, I am not scared, nor really worried about it.  I guess some people must freak out at this point because Sue repeated the "don't panic/don't be alarmed/don't be scared" mantra numerous times during the call.  I see no reason to worry until we know there is something to worry about.... and after that what's the point of worrying when you need to focus on rectifying the situation?  We'll see what they have to say in a few weeks time and then address the issue once we know where we stand.

I guess I should thank Obamacare.  This would really be expensive if I didn't have some sort of insurance doesn't make me like the rest of his "work" in the White House, but I really do appreciate the insurance coverage since I can't get coverage on my own.

So what am I doing in the meantime?  Well, there is a local Renaissance Fair in town that opens after yoga tomorrow (and the Farmers Market is opening this weekend!) so I plan to have a little fun, and then go home and clean my house.... you know, typical Saturday stuff.  And, if I am lucky, I can rope Richard into helping to clear up my crafting office.

You know, since I can't handle any of the heavy lifting and all....  well, I can, but no one tell him that!  ;D

Have a wonderful weekend everyone.... my love to you all.

1 comment:

Danielle said...

Knees are horrible, I'm not looking forward to my old age, because I know my bad knee will be giving me a lot of grief. I feel for you! I'm glad they told you to not be alarmed about the mass, and its good that cancer doesn't run in the family. I hope all is well with it though, and I'll be thinking of you and sending prayers your way.
I miss you a ton and think about you guys all the time. Love your guts!

PS...that is so fun that Miya is working with you!!