I’m going to write this week. I don’t know when or what but I’m going to make it happen. My concentration is slowly working its way to normalish and I plan to take advantage of it. It all has to do with pain meds.
I got off the super pain pills (Dilaudid) over a week ago and now it’s time to get off of the other, Tramadol. It’s not a narcotic but it works like one. When I first started taking it, two months before my surgery it put me into a mental fog I can barely describe. I slept all the time for the first week and could barely eat. I started losing weight, which I know I shouldn’t complain about, but it made me feel even worse physically.
Obviously if you take something like that your body is forced to get used to it so it wasn’t terrible and it definitely worked better than Naproxen for my pain. After the surgery however, I suppose it knocked the edge off but it didn’t really help as much as it had previously. This was actually a bit of a blessing because I knew exactly when I was ready to stop taking it, now.
The doctor told me to stop slowly so I decided to do it in three-day increments. So I stopped taking the Tramadol in the morning on Saturday. Tomorrow I’ll cut out the one after lunch and so on. When I need it I can take Advil or Tylenol (no Tylenol until I’m completely off the Tramadol though). Actually I normally only take an Advil at either 3:00 or 7:45 if I think I need it and I don’t think I’ve needed it twice in the same day since replacing Dilaudid with it.
I’m very happy with my progress. It’s felt so slow, as if I would never recover while in the process but now that I’m almost out of the woods I see it wasn’t too long after all. I’m driving again so cabin fever isn’t a problem anymore and I’m mostly able to walk around normally so I’m getting more active.
Which brings me to the bad news. On Thursday last week two of my toes started hurting. It began with minor discomfort in the morning but by the evening it was burning, stinging, tingling and throbbing. Plus I was almost positive it was in another toe and it seemed to be moving further in. Since the pain radiated it was hard to tell. It started at the tips and by Saturday I could feel it in my foot right behind my toes.
I tried everything to fix whatever was wrong. I thought I must have injured my toes at first but when it started with the burning/stinging I assumed I must have athletes foot. It was weird since I almost never wear shoes or socks unless I have to but I got some of that spray junk and put it all over. The coldness relieved some pain for a few minutes but it didn’t really change anything. I pulled out all the essential oils my mom had given me and tried stuff I looked up online. I made sure I didn’t have an ingrown toenail. Nothing worked.
Friday night I didn’t sleep because it hurt so much and I couldn’t ignore it. So Saturday morning I was the first in line at a little clinic in the grocery store near my house. The doctor said the worst possible thing I could imagine. Neuropathy. It was probably caused by my surgery. I didn’t want to believe her at first because it’s been six weeks since my surgery and it seemed weird to me that it didn’t happen before then. But I knew she was right. I went home and looked it up online. Every page I went to listed the same symptoms, my exact symptoms. Damn, damn, damn! Did I mention it’s probably permanent?
The doctor called me later and made me come back to make sure I didn’t have a blood clot and prescribed nerve pain medicine and an antibiotic just in case I had some kind of infection. She didn’t think I actually had one but better safe than sorry. The nerve stuff only barely works and after she called me yesterday to ask how it was going, the doctor said she will probably up the dose on Thursday.
As for the antibiotic… Well I don’t want to curse again. Basically it’s like when I got on Tramadol all those months ago. I can barely eat and I feel yucky. At least I only have to take that one for a week.
All of this brings me back to what I said in the beginning: I’m going to write this week. Even though I feel gross and have weird and extremely distracting pain in my foot I’m going to write. Even if I only write a list of things I want to write, it WILL happen. I have some writing exercises I want to try and I have this workshop from Holly Lisle titled, 21 Ways to Get Yourself Writing When Your Life Has Just Exploded. It should help me reach my goal.
Everyday I’m going to read about writing and do whatever exercises my muse and my body allow. Now I see it as a challenge, nothing will stop me.
In fact, I’ve had a few story ideas. I’m not sure how good they are but I’ll find out. I’ll write whatever comes to me but my goal is to write flash fiction, preferably 500 words. Two to three stories would be nice but I’ll be satisfied if I can get one completed story and however many starts on others I can manage.
My other goals include organizing my desk and being active. I have an L shaped desk with a four-foot table on one side making it a U. Until a couple of days ago the table was across the room because I couldn’t get in and out of my chair with it there. I had to be too careful. Now I’ve moved it back in its home I have to rearrange everything, thankfully! I’ve missed it.
I also want to get out of the house by myself at least once this week to do some writing. Then this weekend there is an Art’s Festival in my city I plan to go to. Last year during this event I was forced to realize/admit it was time to go to the doctor for my back. We’d only been there for 20 minutes when I started hurting so much I regretting going at all. This year, I may be walking slow but it won’t hurt my back. I can hardly wait.
The only other update I have at the moment is I’ve been able to read with little to no problems. I haven’t done it every day but I’m getting back in the habit. Reading is one of the things I missed the most, as much as writing really.
Oh! As my family will be thrilled to hear, I’m going to try cooking dinner at least once this week. Since I can stand still for a while without pain I should be able to do it. Before my surgery it hurt more to stand in one position than it did to walk. I never thought I’d be excited to cook!
If I have something to update I’ll do so on Thursday or Friday. If not, I’ll post my regular Monday update. I hope you’re all writing/posting more than me!
Did I mention I plan to do the Story A Day in May challenge? Hope I’m ready by then!