Getting Better

Hi Folks,

I’m writing to let you know I am feeling better psychologically, thanks primarily to all your wonderful comments!  Pete, I hear ya’…we actually have a nice little boat at the marina and I am pretty much a beer fiend (thank God for MGD 64 … I’m trying to keep off the 23 pounds I lost last fall so I could become fast again)!  Fortunately those bad boys don’t have much alcohol because I (at 5′5″ and 125 pounds) can down 6-8 of them every night :-) 

And am I glad to know that no one knows what 25% WB means!  Actually, I think I’m already doing more than that…the crutches are more for balance, and I am able to stand without them while putting decent weight on the foot.  It seems to improve a little every day, and even that horrible scab is starting to come off.  I am planning to start biking on my indoor trainer with boot this weekend.

I guess my frustration is partly because of my 10-year history of trouble with my heels.  I am a forefoot runner and as such, my knees have never troubled me but my heels surely have!  After dealing with years of pain in my right heel, which prevented me from doing the 200 and 400 meter sprints necessary for my training, I had a Haglunds deformity removed from my right heel.  Within 3 weeks of surgery, I was running again, although the residual pain lasted about a year, it finally became pain-free and strong again.   However, as SOON as it started feeling really good, my left heel started the same problem.  What I don’t get is that I didn’t wait nearly as long to get the Haglunds removed from that heel (surgery was July 2009), and I waited longer to start running again (6 weeks)…but that is the tendon that ruptured.  Doc told me the tendon must have been weakened by the Haglunds.  So it has been a really frustrating road…I am used to training at a very high level (sub 7:00 miles) and anything slower, in my mind, just isn’t worth doing.  It is beginning to look like I’m going to have to find a different sport because I have not seen any evidence of anyone being able to go back to 200 and 400 meter sprints after having this issue.

Yes, I can even relate to Stephen Hawking; I am also a physicist (in my spare time)…I have degrees in physics and math and am in the process of writing a paper on new math for wormholes.  Maybe I should just forget running and concentrate on that!  :-)

And don’t even get me started about our health care system.  I am wondering if my insurance is paying anything here!

At any rate…this is getting long, but I do want to thank all of you for your helpful, insightful and inspirational comments.  I’ll keep posting…and let you know how that first bike ride on the trainer goes :-)  Hopefully I won’t fall and bust my butt!

Take care all, MM

4 Responses to “Getting Better”

  1. My dad, 87, has ulcerated feet. In an effort to allow the skin to form over the exposed left achilles tendon, a wound vac was applied for three weeks to no avail. The exposed achilles tendon sparked a surgical procedure that resulted in a good two inches of tendon totally removed and now there’s this gaping wound that you could put your fist through, (nearly). Is this normal? They’ve cut off the tendon. Cut through it for two inches and into the ankle back area. I’m totally upset and unsettled and in shock. I had nightmares worrying about it. Please tell me that it’s worth it to cut off a man’s tendon so that the skin can heal, and that the downside of this gaping wound is not as bad as just leaving the exposed achilles tendon alone and hoping the skin would eventually cover it up. chris

  2. MM, I love your (continuing?) transformation from moaner to bitcher! I hope you don’t mind the language, I mean it in the best possible way. We all have reasons to complain, and some of that is healthy. Heck, I’ve been trying to get some of our colleagues to bitch more to their health professionals than they’re willing to do. That’s part of a healthy coping mechanism, and it’s good to “see the dust” left over from you coping! :-D

    Chrisbroe, that is one awful story! I hope somebody here knows something that can help. Is your Dad diabetic, or does he have another underlying circulatory or autoimmune problem that keeps his wounds from healing?

    A 2″ gap in the AT isn’t “fatal” to good healing under good circumstances — I think I started around there 14 weeks ago, and I’m just getting rid of a subtle residual little “dip-limp” in my gait, in two shoes, all without surgery. But if they removed the AT, they probably also removed the sheath that surrounds it, and that may be enough to prevent good healing by itself. Plus, if your Dad’s condition means his body doesn’t heal well anyway. . .

    I’ve thought and written a few times in the past 3 months, that if it weren’t for natural healing, (a) we’d all be goners and (b) we wouldn’t give the Doctors 1/10 of the credit and respect they get now. If the Docs can’t get that working for your Dad, that makes all the choices tough ones. My 85-yr-old Father-in-Law just got told two bits of bad news on the same day last week: (1) He’s got a terminal blood condition that used to be called “pre-leukemia” (and called that for good reasons), and (2) “The Man” was taking away his driver’s license. He’s somewhere between “not amused” and inconsolable, and his wife isn’t in much better spirits.

    Here’s trying to send some Good Healing toward your Dad — and my FiL, too!

  3. Dear Chris

    Your father’s story makes me feel fortunate with what I have. I’m not a physician, but hope the reason for the surgery was to close the wound. Your father can walk without the Achilles Tendon with the proper orthotics. And there is always the possibility of splicing some other tendon, etc. in there to restore function later.The open wound is/was vulnerable to infections that have dire consequences for the nerves,ankle, foot, etc.. And the movement of the tendon may have been preventing skin from forming and closing the wound.

    Good luck in the future. My best wishes and hopes are with you and your father.

  4. MM…glad to see you posting and that you are doing much better.

    You’re welcome for the thoughts and the kind words sent your way…we all need them from time to time. Maybe someday you can encourage me. I go back to surgery on August 6th, 2010 to have my other AT on my left foot.

    Hang in there and keep us posted.

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