It has been five days since I saw yet another doctor about my injury. I wasn't in the best headspace afterwards to recap what happened and what the next four weeks look like. Honestly, I'm not feeling that much better about anything. I feel like I've been able to keep my fears and disappointment at arm's length, focusing on what I COULD do (swim, lift) instead of what I couldn't (everything else). It helped that I was making progress in the gym, adding weight which in turn has helped my swim (especially since I can't kick, just pull). That came to a screeching halt on Wednesday morning.
I'll try to keep this part short, and suggest that if you want learn more about what I'm talking about feel free to email me or hit me up on the Facebook page. At the urging of my PT, I went to a sports medicine clinic in Maryland. She spoke to the doctor ahead of time, giving him an idea of what had been going on and what I'd done so far for treatment. During the appointment, he asked me questions about what was going on and I gave him an earful of how stressful this has been, how frustrated I am, how much being able to run (hell, be able to exercise at all) is critical to my emotional health as well as my physical health and career aspirations. He fired up the ultrasound equipment and starting poking/prodding/ultrasounding the general area. It didn't take long to zero on the spot and from there things went pretty quickly. There is your tendon, there is a tear-type thing (ps I still don't know how anyone sees anything on those screens). Area not as vascularized, takes time to heal, etc.
Options included doing nothing (cost: $0.00 and my sanity), musculotskeletal prolotherapy (cost: a few hundred $, not covered by insurance, more needles), platelet rich plasma therapy (cost: at least $1,000 a pop, not covered by insurance, needles and local anesthesia), and bone marrow stem cell therapy (cost: I don't want to know, not covered by insurance, needle jabbed into a bone, and local anesthesia). I had the option of taking some time to think about it all, but I have had my fill of thinking. I am also living paycheck to paycheck so PRP and stem cell were not a financial possibility (not to mention scary-sounding). So, I went with door #2. Watching the screen, I could see the needle going into my leg and doing its thing. It was NOT awesome, but over in a decent amount of time. Slap a bandaid on it and off we go. For the next two weeks: no activity. I can go to work, come home, do the basic things that need to be done in life. No lifting, no swimming, no stretching, not even a push-up. WHHHHHAAAAAATTTT!? After those 2 weeks, see my PT and get a status report. See the doctor again at 4 weeks.
Nothing is at arm's length anymore and I don't feel like they have to be. I am not trying to be overdramatic but I think it is perfectly reasonable for me to see this for what it is, feel how I am feeling, and be honest about it. I'm a little tired of thinking of this as temporary, knowing it will be worth it in the long run, and all the other things I've been told by people who mean well but don't know what this is actually like. Letting me vent and cry and be upset because this sucks is important and trying to sell me a silver-lining right now feels dismissive. Sorry, friends and family, but it does (especially since most know this is about more than being able to knock out a few miles). What I need is someone to accept that what I am feeling is 100% okay. I'm not looking for someone to co-host a pity party. I'm looking for someone to acknowledge how this is impacting my daily life and say "hell yeah, this sucks. WTF."
I need help staying distracted. This is no easy task. Staying off social media doesn't matter as my own home is a constant reminder of running. Medal racks. Race pictures. Magazines. Piles of shoes. Living with a runner. I can only rot my brain on so much TV. I'm reading a bit but my eyes are starting to cross. I'd like to go see movies but I can't sit comfortably in the theater. Same goes for taking a sunny drive through the beautiful areas around my house. The area aches within 5-10 minutes of sitting in a car seat. I've spent most of this weekend reclined on one couch or another and it is getting old. My brain needs to be occupied. So, here comes the ask. Please help me brainstorm ways to fill my time for at least the next two weeks. I'd prefer not to binge-watch Netflix and the like but I know I can't exactly be picky.
I appreciate all the love and support I have received in the last few months, it truly means a lot. I hope this post hasn't been one whiny mess; that was not the intent. I just needed to be able to say what I've been trying to say for weeks now and finally be heard. The situation is what it is, I want help getting through it. Thank you. XOXO.