Sitting at my computer has become more painful, now that I can’t find a comfortable position for my foot. I didn’t fall or trip or do anything else to it, but one day it started hurting. Usually my pain is in joints or in more “common” areas like my back and neck. The top of my foot was a new one. So I waited for it to away.
But it didn’t go away. I meant to mention it to my new podiatrist when I went to get examined for new orthodics, but I was so excited about the orthodics that I forgot to mention it. When I went to pick up the new orthodics 2 weeks later, I still had the pain, and this time I remembered to mention it. She said that the area I’m pointing is actually related to joint. Immediately, alarm bells went off in my mind. A joint?? Could I really have a new joint acting up?? She explained that there was a ligament there that had probably gotten stretched too far some how. She said it should fix itself within a few weeks, but it had already been a few weeks. The next step would be to immobilize the foot. Um, no thanks! Well ok, I might have. But first she wants to see if the new orthodics help. I sure hope they do!
But in the meantime, I’m left to wonder if this new problem is isolated or if it’s part of my connective tissue issues. It’s possible that it’s isolated, right? Right? I mean, if an otherwise-healthy person can have this problem, then I can too, right? Right?
But it’s also possible, even likely, that it’s an extension of the pain that I already have in my wrists, toes, knees, fingers…. Every few years I get pain in a new set of joints and it doesn’t go away. It can’t be “healed.” I haven’t had any new joints join the list in several years so I’ve been lulled into thinking this might be it. But I should know better. Despite all of my hard work and all of my improvements, I still have the same autoimmune diseases, whatever they are, that caused the problems in the first place. I’ve always assumed that sooner or later all of my joints would succumb to this. I just hoped it would be later rather than sooner. And when I pictured it, I didn’t picture this particular spot of pain that I never knew existed in relation to a joint.
This isn’t the end of the world. Actually, in my world, it’s relatively minor. The pain isn’t actually what’s bothering me at this particular moment. What’s bothering me is that I don’t know how to proceed. If the orthodics don’t help (and with my luck, they probably won’t) then should I bother to immobilize the foot? That wouldn’t be good – I wouldn’t be able to wear my new orthodics, it would throw off my balance, it would probably aggravate my hip, and it would be a real bitch to deal with in the cold, snow, and ice that come with Boston winters. And it probably wouldn’t do a damn bit of good. But then again, if there’s even the tiniest chance that it could help, that I might be preventing future pain, don’t I owe it to my future self to try?
Or would I just be deluding myself by thinking there was a chance this could possibly be an isolated condition?
Sadly, it’s a situation that we with chronic illness have to deal with far too often. Every pain, every extra-tired day, every ear infection or sore throat or sneeze or…. we have to question it all. My foot is simply today’s question.