We celebrate the small victories. We take pleasure in the little achievements. Today I walked up two flights of stairs and down three (I don’t know how that works, it just does) and I may have taken over 1000 steps without, so far, major pain ramifications. I feel a twinge every now and then, a memory of searing heat, but no sharp stabbing ensues.
The marvels of acupuncture cannot be expounded enough. In this situation, at least, the treatment is far superior than its western counterpart. In my doctor’s consultancy room scripts for more pain killers are considered and handed over, after the doctor asks me to raise my legs while I’m in a lying position. I can’t do this without pain. A failure to fix this problem via physiotherapy can lead, ultimately, to surgery ON MY SPINE. I mean, seriously, you’d like to scrap a bit of my spine away because that’s all you can fathom.
A trip to my acupuncturist results in two needles into my back, a period of rest with them in there, I’m lying on my left side, usually sore and uncomfortable, but with these needles in place I feel no pain. At the end of the treatment I say I can still feel the tightness, the memory is there. Another needle into the area near the base of my skull and a direction to move around. I stretch backward, no pain, I stretch forward and touch my toes (knees slightly bent) and I feel tightness but not the sear of heat. I lift my left leg in front of me and, knee bent, I move it to the left in an arch, NO PAIN. I can walk and bend and exert pressure and I haven’t been paid back with a resultant pulse or stab or throb of pain.
I’ve done a bit of walking since then. I climbed those stairs, went back down, wandered to find food, traversed across the Yarra and caught the tram at Elizabeth St. My left leg is a little sore but it’s nothing, nothing compared to yesterday and the day before and the one before that. I have renewed hope that I can beat this, that it will not rule me, I will rule it. Partly I think it is my leg’s muscles being reminded of their purpose, the other part is that it’s not quite better but it is much closer than it was. Now the trip home on the bus is the test. Can I survive this without seizing up?
Addendum: Another question – Can I survive this bus trip without exploding at the women behind me who are blathering inanely about stuff they know nothing about? “Oh, I loved my golly, I always wanted a black baby doll, I wasn’t interested in the white ones. People should be able to have these things if they don’t mean to offend people.” “When we first came here I was waiting to see all the Aborigines but I couldn’t see any of them anywhere.” My wife laid a gentling hand on me, I restrained myself. They’ve moved on to coffee now.