The Painful Truth

Recently I wrote about my “great” fall. It turns out it was greater than I thought. As the pain in my wrist kept increasing, I could no longer ignore it. In the morning it would make crunching sounds as if I were cracking a walnut, and the pain was excruciating. And it would hurt throughout the day if I accidentally twisted it certain ways. I went to see my nurse practitioner, and she ordered x-rays to see if I had broken something.

Unfortunately, this was the day before Thanksgiving, so it was two days before they could squeeze me in for that x-ray. And then, once it was done, I was told it would be two business days before my doctor got the report. And it was a Friday. I know that this isn’t as high a priority for everyone else as it is for me, but for crying out loud, I’m in pain here!

I suffered through the weekend, not getting much sleep because every time I’d toss and turn, the pain would wake me up. Monday afternoon I called my doctor’s office to see if they’d heard anything. Indeed they had, but my nurse practitioner wasn’t in that day. Seriously? Can’t someone else look at the report? They had my doctor call me back a few hours later. Good news. No bone breaks!

But was it good news? I was still in pain. What was going on? Would I need more tests? Well, the doctor couldn’t say without seeing me. Great. So I made an appointment for the next day. Another night of discomfort.

She saw me, and based on her evaluation she suspects I dislocated it, and popped it back in on my own, hence the crunching noises. And all that caused a sprained tendon. Now I’d need a splint. But not just any splint. This splint will have my thumb sticking outward, which will make writing and typing and driving and, well, everything awkward. And I’ll have to wear the thing for two to four weeks.

But of course, this unusual splint isn’t something you can just pick up at the corner pharmacy. Oh no. She had to write a prescription, and I had to set up an appointment for, you guessed it, the next day, at an orthotics place for a fitting.

I went to the orthotics place, and they measured me for the splint, but of course they didn’t have one on hand. They had to special order it. And I could pick it up, yep, tomorrow.

For heaven’s sake, if I were a starfish I could have grown another limb by now. And the pain wasn’t going anywhere. I’m afraid to take too much pain medication for it because the pain is what warns me that I’m doing bad things to the tendon.

Once I finally got the splint and could no longer oppose my thumb, I could just feel the IQ points dropping. You have no idea how much you use your thumb until you can’t anymore. Typing this is taking ages. But I have to say I’m in a lot less pain while trussed up like a Christmas goose.

It’s putting it mildly to say I don’t do pain well. When I had major surgery many years ago and they put me on a pain medicine pump afterward, I sat there with the button pressed the whole time. The nurse said, “You do realize it will only dispense the pain meds periodically, don’t you?” “Yeah, but I want it the second it is ready to take pity on me.”

I suspect this is going to be a long month.

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7 thoughts on “The Painful Truth

      1. It would be a great way to meet people… like you are a junior Vader in training… you don’t have the full black outfit yet… you could only afford the glove… HA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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