Thursday, May 3, 2012

The Mysterious Case of the Woebegone Leg

It’s been a time, this April past.  Whoo boy, has it ever.  ::Be warned, I’m full of coffee and a quiet house, so this might get long!::   [and the pictures are completely random, because who wants to see pictures of a pregnant lady’s leg?  :) ]
Monday, April 9, I woke to my upper left leg super tight.  It didn’t go away through the day, and by Wednesday, the tightness had been joined by some major nerve pain right in that spot where your leg meets your hip.  It was so. hard. to walk.  Just getting from the couch to the bathroom and back, my leg felt like I had just sprinted the 100 meter dash without warming up, and carrying bricks on my back.  It was insane.  Couple this new pain and exhaustion with my own pregnancy fatigue, and I was basically useless. 
I finally went to a local chiropractor, where a plan was made, but I really wanted it to end.  Right then.  Who wouldn’t, right?  No such luck.
By the following Tuesday, the pain was starting to move out of that major muscle in my thigh, more to the muscles on the inside of my left leg, while the pain at the top of my leg continued.  And so the chiropractor appointments continued.  By Wednesday, though, I was at my limit.  Crying all the time, in pain literally all day, and that feeling of complete uselessness and dependence on everyone else just took its toll.  The entire house was beginning to suffer at the expense of this leg mystery, and a woman who couldn’t deal. 
And so I did it.  I went to a doctor.  Not the one I *wanted* to go see (no, the one I wanted to go see is so popular, I couldn’t get a new-patient appointment for her until June.  Yes, I just said "New Patient.”  That’s the kicker about not having a doctor – when you need one, whoopsie daisie!  They can’t see you until you have a New Patient appointment.) So I went somewhere I knew I could be seen.  I won’t mention the fact that I have been there, and had a negative experience and caution friends and husband alike about that place. 
And guess where I went.   Mm-hmm, that’s right.  Sigh…
I was desperate, folks.    I walked out of there feeling like the doctor was just catching butterflies.  I talked to my chiropractor and she gave me more information and dern it! – with more confidence, and that’s what I was needing.  The ruling was against a UTI (what??), a hernia (come again??) and a blood clot – which I was not ruling out, personally.  I won’t even talk about the “conversation” about the number of children we have and our child-bearing …plans.  {breathing deeply now…}   And I shall continue to eschew friends to other locations after this.  The good thing out of it was a referral to a PT, which I actually had considered much earlier in this whole ordeal.  I mean, it’s muscles that hurt, right? 
By Thursday, there was only residual, comes-from-walking-weird sensations in the large muscle and very little in my nerves at my leg.  But, all the pain was then in the calf and hamstring.  And Yowza, was it there. 
Fast forward to today.
I have been going to the PT and the chiropractor, and really just trying to keep my wits about me. I struggled so much to keep my mind focused on the (hopefully!) temporary nature of this condition and continue to the joy in it all.  Keeping God in the center of my viewfinder, so to speak.
The bummer of it is that I allowed my mind to shift from what God was doing FOR me, to what what happening TO me.  It got bad, and here’s how it made spiral downward into such a bad place:  
I Couldn’t Deal.
I have friends who are going through life and death situations, relatives who lived joyous and praise-filled lives through surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatments.  I have friends who live every day with Lyme disease, Fibromyalgia, and other conditions where they are basically told that even with pain meds, the pain will always be there – it’s their lot in life now.      
And I could not  DEAL with my one leg. Really?  Sally, what would you DO if you were faced with something more hardcore? 
That realization that I was no more dependent…no,no,no RELIANT on God in my weakness and imperfection that someone who boldfaced stated their independence from God.  I was trying to drive this think ALONE!   What on earth was I doing???
It was a HARDCORE reality check, friends, that is what this leg deal was.  I found myself in a place I don’t ever care to be (and shared more here than I thought I would!), but I found myself being lifted up anyway – being gently turned in the right direction. 
My voice You shall hear in the
morning, O Lord;
In the morning I will direct it to
And I will look up.
--Psalm 5:3
Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
--Proverbs 3:5
I lay down and slept;
I awoke, for the Lord sustained me.
--Psalm 3:5
There some very specific folks who have been warriors for me – not pitying me, just wanting to serve in some way. They went to battle for me – to keep me cheered, to keep my children engaged, to keep the home going, to keep the Enemy from taking over my mind (I need some hardcore artillery here, ya’ll), to keep life moving.  They took time from their lives to help in some way, and it has all meant the world to me and my family.
***My mom is always checking on me by phone and email and praying – and I know when she tells me she will pray, she isn’t just messing around.  It’s happening.  She lives in another state, so I don’t have her here to pop over, or watch the kids or anything.  That said, she has come up here on a whim, just stepped into life and worked on getting this house in better shape, giving Bryan a much-needed break!
***My husband has been amazing since we found out we were pregnant:  wash dishes, cook the meals, clean the clothes, straighten-ish up, taking the children to church alone, to outings so I can rest, in addition to all the garden and yard work, the children’s baths, and bedtime that he usually does.  Don't forget fixing me my one cup of coffee I the morning (and the evening—shhhhh), making sure I take my vitamins (I am convinced there is a chemical in my body that causes my brain to block out the calling to take vitamins.), making my herbal tea, even.  All when the semester is ending up and he is crazy busy with meetings, exams, advising and whatever else can be squeezed in before 5:00.  And he still rubs my bum leg, stays up to talk with me, watches Bones and Castle with me :)
And one Wednesday night, he and the children PRAYED OVER ME.  He has NEVER in our time together prayed over me before.  Someone was crying……
***My church family.  Praying, helping Bryan with the children at church, and loving on us all.  It feels good to know that when one is down, there is a fellowship of believers to surround and lift you up. 
***My readers!  I have gotten so many emails from folks I haven’t even met in real life who have been following the blog and lifting their voices on my behalf, and for that I thank you all!!
***And Lecia.  This girl has a halo and wings that we just can’t see.  She has been the most tremendous help these past four weeks.  She has prayed, constantly checked on me, cared for my children in her home and out, even served us supper – Bryan is SO grateful!!
I’m mostly mended (but a swelling that has us all scratching our heads, but at least there’s practically no pain!!!) and am ready to get back to business!

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