Cool Stuff

Monday, April 21, 2014

Putting One Foot, er...WORD in Front Of The Other

The alternate title for this post could just as easily be called: "Just Keep Pluggin' Away". In all honesty...both describe perfectly how I need to approach any writing I do from here on out, especially for Shell Shock Serenade. 

Why do I need to just keep moving forward? I would say the rather common term "Writer's Block" accurately describes what is happening to me concerning my inability to write this past year but in my opinion it doesn't really begin to explain what has truly happened these last 12 months or so. And frankly I am not convinced I need to try and fully explain how I have gotten to this SILENT, scary and unfamiliar place, yet I believe it is important to try and relate that aspect of the story.

Most readers know I suffered a debilitating broken right leg (Fibula) injury in February of 2013. I had emergency surgery to repair it the very next day and by all appearances all was going well and it was healing nicely. That was a misleading illusion leading to a dangerous false sense of security. 

The reality was that it had almost instantly become infected and the infection masked an even more sinister and frightening little secret...The big leg bone next to the Fibula, my Tibia had been shattered at the ankle joint knocking the connection to the foot completely out of whack. The sad and scary truth was that not one of several Physicians (including a couple Orthopedic Surgeons) who saw the X-Rays noticed this and for months while I fought a high fever and other infection symptoms I was basically told that all the swelling, discoloration and excruciating pain was a figment of my imagination! The last straw for me was having one surgeons nurse basically tell me I was being a pain in the ass and I could be referred to a Pain Clinic but they wouldn't treat me any more.

This kind of treatment at the hands of medical professionals that we often must trust our very lives to in de-humanizing and disheartening. I was despondent and at the absolute END of my rope. Long before this...I had become almost Physically, Emotionally, Psychologically and Spiritually NUMB. And I then discovered that I could no longer write more then a few intelligible words in any given sentence. I had become MUTE...suffering from a complete inability to communicate any longer how I felt or what I needed to do. I was LOST!

It was at that moment I once again sought another opinion, much as I had already done several times before with one important difference...I sought it from a doctor who worked in another city and who did not know or work with my original physicians. That my dear readers made all the difference. 

It became immediately clear I had a very serious and yes, limb threatening injury to my right ankle and lower leg bone that somehow had been over-looked or Heaven Forbid...MISSED! On top of that the infection that I had been led to believe was not an infection had advanced to the Life Threatening stage and I was immediately hospitalized in Battle Creek MI for 9 nights/10 days.

The I was sent to one of the best ankle surgeons in the mid-west at Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Our initial meeting lasted over an hour and I knew right away that this guy meant business. The prognosis was very serious...he gave me two choices: I could have a very intensive Ankle Fusion Surgery where I wouldn't be able to walk for at least 3 months and realistically only had a 30% or so chance of success. Or I could have my right leg amputated 6" below the knee. 

I was stunned...To describe myself as in shock was a total and complete understatement but in reality I was also RELIEVED. Why? Because I now knew pretty much where I stood...I knew what was wrong and I was given a couple treatment options. I learned that I wasn't crazy, that there was indeed something very seriously wrong with me. I now had a surgeon I believed in and though still skeptical and somewhat gun-shy from my previous treatment I made the decision to trust him and follow his treatment program. It has so far proven to be a wise decision.

Though I am currently still dealing with this ordeal and about to embark on a 6 week IV Anti-Biotic Treatment Program at home this morning, I am still positive and optimistic about the results. But I am also not under any false pretensions about this...if this treatment program is unsuccessful in killing off the infection...I will lose my right leg 6" below the knee. That is no is but a simple FACT. But it is a fact I can live with if it indeed comes to that.

That is the back-drop information and behind the scenes accounting of why I found myself so emotionally and spiritually SICK that I could no longer participate in my absolute favorite past-time of all....WRITING. I was too numb, far to deeply in shock from the endless ordeal of pain, heartbreak and dehumanizing treatment at the hands of individuals who saw me only as another PATIENT or God Forbid another in a long list of 15 minute appointment FEE's.

I realize that there will be some that read this and will immediately assume that I am an angry and disgruntled patient, hence I am prone toward exaggerating and unfairly throwing accusations around about the treatment I received. that couldn't be further from the truth. Frankly I was the last one to come around and realize that my doctors did NOT have my health or best interest at heart.  

They simply refused to listen to what I was saying to them...they played GOD and could have killed me in the process. I am beyond fortunate that I survived and am so grateful for the doctor I have today.

Even though it could be easy to get down about beginning a 6 week IV Treatment Program today where I have had a long term PICC LINE inserted into the vein above my heart, preventing me from  even light physical activity for the duration of the treatment. Yea, Yea....that means no Crippled Golf, my main exercise, hobby and sanity retaining activity these days. 

So that is the main reason I have determined that it is even more important then I originally thought to begin writing daily AGAIN...therefore the increased determination to keep moving forward, putting one step word in front of the other.                                                                                                                                                            

No comments:

Post a Comment