Ever notice your feet? You know, those two appendages at the end of your legs with phalanges at the tips, better know as piggies or toes. I’m sure you’ll agree that our feet are really amazing. For one thing, they help you keep your balance, unless it’s Saturday night at my sisters and you drink a little too much milk with cola. It’s not so much the milk and cola as the amount of vodka that’s added to it, ending in what’s called a “Paralyzer”, which by definition means “Don’t expect your feet to help keep you vertical”. And when nature calls at 3am, your feet help you find the grandkids building blocks that didn’t make it back to the toy box. You can also play This Little Piggy Went to Market on your feet, although I always wondered why a pig would even go to market. Personally, I’d opt to be the piggy that stayed home in fear of being caught at the market and thus becoming bacon sold at the the market. I also wondered why one piggy was having roast beef and didn’t share it with the piggy who had none, and I suspect (though no hard evidence has been discovered and nobody’s talking) that the last piggy was on his way home from a party and was crying because no one offered him a Paralyzer…. But I digress.
The reason that I brought up feet, is that during the past year, I started to experience sharp pain shooting through two of my toes. General walking at work, going up or down the steps (we have 22 out front of our house AND we live in a 4 level spit…uh huh) or just simply walking around the neighborhood would bring it on. As the months went by, the pain became more frequent and eventually bothered me even when I was sitting down, which wasn’t something my boss encouraged because the counter at Guest Services for the mall was so high that if we didn’t stand, shoppers would think no one was there to complain to, and it was my job to listen to their whining demands concerns.
The next obvious step was to see my doctor, who referred me to a foot specialist. As the day approached, I began to wonder why someone would specialize is feet. Does he have feet problems of his own that prompted him to want to help others? Does he have a foot fetish and this was a great way to get his fix AND make money? Or were his parents Podiatrists, and paying for his education and wanted him to follow in their footsteps (I couldn’t resist) So before I headed to his clinic, I did what anyone would do before presenting their slightly aged, calloused feet (complete with bunion) to a complete stranger for inspection. I stopped for a Paralizer. Just kidding! But after scrubbing, nail pruning, massaging oils, and putting on a clean (and hole free) pair of socks, I did stop at Tim Horton’s for an espresso. If I wasn’t allowed to be fully relaxed, I figured I may as well be fully awake in case he started playing piggy games and I had to make a run for it.
A little anxious, I entered the building. I was hit with the smell of, you guessed it, foot odor. Ok, it wasn’t foot odor, but it could have been. No, it was New Office Smell. And it was complimented by New Office Look and New Office Decor. I was greeted by two cheerful ladies and one of them showed to an examination room that didn’t have your typical examination table, but a rather large and comfy looking vinyl recliner. So far, so good. After she had me settled in and left the room, I soon found the buttons that adjust the recliner and I wasted no time …
Button A: Up, down, up down, up down
Button B: Foot rest up, down, up down, up down
Button C: Don’t know. Nothing happened.
Button D: Recline, sit up, recline, sit up, recline, get caught when the door suddenly opens and the doctor walks in.
Him: Big smile “Hello, my name is Dr. YoungAndCute. Comfortable?”
Me: Fumble with buttons “Hi…um” and try to look nonchalant as my face starts to blister from the heat of the blush, and nothing happens to right the damn chair.
Him: Still smiling while reaching for a button “I’ll just sit you up a bit, if that’s ok, and I will have to raise the foot rest so I can get a better look at your foot”
I thought I handled that well, don’t you?
So after a quick chat, he took my bare foot in his hands and started manipulating it and when he got to putting pressure under and over the area of concern, and asking the usual “Does this hurt?” and getting my “OW, what the $#@! ..Yes” he confirmed what the x-rays didn’t show, but my family doctor has suspected. I had a Morton’s Neuroma, which is fibrous tissue that has accumulated around a nerve and won’t let go. And in my case it not only wouldn’t let go, but as far as I could tell, it was wrestling with the nerve in an attempt to show it had total power over it.
In moving along, I’ll just say that after the usual treatments including anti-inflammatories, arch supports, foam/fabric pads, $#@!ing unpleasant corticosteroid injections, a bit of praying, and no relief, surgery to remove the neuroma and the nerve itself, seemed like my next step.
Before I made my final decision, I spent time on the internet reading forums from others who have had it done, and came away dizzy. Good vs bad, and everything in between. In comparison, I looked up sites for people who had surgery for hemorrhoids, and it was also good vs bad. I think all procedures have good results and not so good results. Well I knew I couldn’t go through the rest of my life not being able to go for hikes, walks, or dancing around the house naked and I was becoming limited to what I could actively do with the grandkids, not to mention working. So I made my decision…I was NOT have a hemmorhoidectomy.
A couple of weeks later the day had arrived, and so had we. As general anaesthetic and I don’t get along very well, I chose to have it done at his clinic, with only a happy pill and a local anaesthetic. Brian left me in their care and his assistant settled me onto the operating table and gave me my pill. The sheet was up so I couldn’t see what was going on and the doctor administered the freezing, which I’d like to say was PAINFUL, and if my foot hadn’t been tied down, I’m sure I would have kicked him in the head. I’m assuming he secures the foot because of past head injury incidences. Three injections later, he makes the first cut which is immediately followed by “OW, what the $#@! …I can feel that”. He was quite surprised, but then I don’t freeze well at the dentist office either. Sooooo, after another injection, he tried again, and not even a tickle was felt…Yay!
I spent the next fifty minutes chatting with his assistant, who was thoroughly interested in becoming a paramedic, and my many years of experience in that field led me to shed some reality on that career. She asked all the right questions, like “What do you do when someone vomits all over you?” to “Is it okay to test out the defibrillator on your partner when they’re sleeping?” I sense she’ll do well.
After the stitching and wrapping was done, the doctor pulled back the sheet and told me to sit up so they could put the cast on. “How are you feeling? I guess the happy pill was working because you didn’t shut up …seem bothered at all” I then realized that I hadn’t felt like the pill had done anything. “Oh” I started, as I began to sit up “I don’t think it did anyth…………Hey, why is the room all distorted, I love those twinkle lights, is that an orange kangaroo, and when did you get your nose enlarged?”
Sooooo, cast on, crutches in place, Brian close at hand, a pain killer prescription in my purse, and a follow up appointment in three days, we went home. Brian helped me settle on the sofa, foot elevated, pillows all fluffed up, a pile of books and laptop computer on the table next to me.
“Hey dear, I need to go pee. Can you or the orange kangaroo please help me up the stairs?. And if that whiny little pig doesn’t want his Paralizer, I’ll have it”
Six weeks of recovery? No problem.