I’d like to think that I’ve generally kept my spirits up for the most part throughout the treatment I’ve been undergoing. Yes there have been bad days, infections etc that have brought my mood crashing down but I’m generally a positive person and tough as it can be, I’ve kept smiling.
January is a bad time for many, post Christmas/New Year with bleak weather and back to work etc but this last week has been a real test.
Wednesday was the day I was supposed to be travelling to St Peters Hospital in Chertsey (a 30 mile drive) to meet with my consultant and set a date for surgery to remove the ilizarov frame. As we all know, Tuesday evening saw the worst snow fall in the UK for a great many years and so when we awoke Wednesday it was clear Cinders would not be going to the ball.
With a foot of snow having fallen overnight our car was stuck and the local roads were equally treacherous. Soon after we got up and surveyed the scene I received a text from the hospital cancelling the appointment and advising that a new one would be arranged in due course.
Having waited since early December for this visit I was very dissappointed. I’d hoped to finally have a target date for removal and was very excited about the prospect. But it was not to be.
I tried not to let the missed appointment affect me but I couldn’t hide the fact that spirits were low no matter how hard I tried. The snow also means I’m housebound. We can’t get the car out of our drive even though if we could, most of the local roads are now passable with care, it’s too big a job for MrsG and I can’t help. I dared to venture out on Wednesday to brush snow off the car and ended up flat on my face!
So it’s now Saturday. I’ve not left the house since Monday, no mail has arrived so no new appointment and to top it all off, four of my pin sites have decided now is an opportune moment to flare up! One has a very impressive and ever growing blister attached, another under my thigh is so sore I can’t go near it and another gives instant sharp pain if touched or the skin surrounding it moves. Couple that with a loss of appetite which given I need to lose another stone to reach ideal weight isn’t all bad!
And finally, the Yahoo Support Group for those undergoing ilizarov procedures has had a few posts from members who have just had or have just had scheduled the removal of their frames which has made me very jealous!
After 5 months a few more weeks isn’t really a big deal but now that I know it has fulfilled it’s purpose and could come off I am more aware than ever of the restrictions it imposes on me. I’m much more able now and can get about the house with ease but little things like just sitting on a chair without having to have your leg raised are impossible. I can’t put a sock on my right leg, nor take it off and I am forced to sleep on my back, I can’t turn over or adjust my position at all. Even when the frame is removed I will need intensive physio to get my locked knee mobilised before I can drive.
I guess knowing why I am feeling low is half the battle but I’m struggling to regain my positivity, suggestions on a postcard to #iwantthisruddyframeoffnow
Update: I thought a quick addendum to this blog post was in order. By the following Thursday I’d become a lot worse, had very little sleep and had been suffering with a fever/chill for a few days so off we went to see my GP.
She immediately diagnosed a staphylococcus infection. Apparently the blister is a classic indicator and the fever suggested the infection had taken a hold. So back on the antibiotics with a warning that if the fever had not improved within 24hrs I would likely need to be admitted. Once again I’d failed to spot the signs early enough. Perhaps it’s the typical male reticence to seek medical advice for fear of ‘causing a fuss’!
Happily the fever did abate although the infection is still causing some pain and soreness a week later. Thankfully with an op now scheduled for Friday this will soon be a non-issue.