Category Archives: Runners Knee

Treatment Thursday!

06.30 – Day 2 of the virus & broken sleep. I go to wake elder child because he is at running club for 7am. I don’t normally take him, in fact I’ve never taken him – so this routine is alien to me. I go back to get dressed etc.

06.40 – I check in on elder child & the monkey had turned over & fallen asleep again. He didn’t remember I’d already woken him once.

06.45 – He emerges shirtless, in plain black shorts – because he’s lost his spare logoed pair – he can’t find his gym shirt, & I swear I washed both shirts at the weekend. Obviously one set of gym kit has to stay at school, but the other should be at home. He has breakfast while I look in his room & in the laundry room. Definitely no shirt! I dig out his old one from last year – school changed the style this year for an updated dry-flow one just to make sure we spend even more money educating our children.

06.55 – After throwing himself together & barely brushing his teeth, we leave.

07.02 – We pull up outside school, he rolls out of the car. I wish him a good day & a fun field trip to the Maritime museum, & off he goes. Field trips require what they call No.1 uniform (shirt & tie with blazer & all the trimmings!).

07.25 – Back at the sanatorium sick people are still sleeping – at least they were until I let the dog out & she started barking at invisible intruders.

07.40 – Hubby & younger child appear looking not much better really. Tylenol & Advil for breakfast then!

08.10 – I am being a grumpy cow because I’m nervous & scared about the afternoon trip to the hospital. I haven’t showered, or done my hair or makeup & I’m wearing dog walking clothes because they were the nearest thing I could find in the dark. I look an absolute treat when I happen to see elder child’s blazer hanging on his peg. I think I actually swore out loud – younger child was upstairs & hubby was in the shower so nobody heard.

08.20 – I text elder child’s teacher to see when they are leaving for their trip & do I have time to bring the blazer. I leave anyway, mad I was so disorganised.

08.40 – It takes me twice as long to get to school because I’m now in rush hour traffic. I rock up outside & throw my hazards on because I should be no more than a few minutes. I punch the code into the front door – nothing. I have the right numbers but maybe not in the right order, I try several combinations – nothing. I catch the lovely receptionist eye (she is always letting me in because I never remember the code!) & would you believe it wasn’t locked yet, that is why I didn’t hear it click – blonde moment!

0845 – I walk out of the elevator & his teacher is sat at her desk opposite me, she smiles & informs my son that a lovely lady has brought something for him. He gives me a big hug, the entire class are sat in their blazers but him so it was worth going back even if it was a pain. I take the elevator back down hoping I don’t’ run into hot teacher because I look like a homeless person.

08.50 – I escaped without embarrassment & head home AGAIN!

10.30 – After a serious discussion from hubby because I’m being snappy & miserable, I shower & sort myself out. I don’t really feel like putting makeup on or dressing in anything more than yoga pants & a sweatshirt. I feel nauseous as the clock ticks.

12.00 – After doing laundry, & a few other bits & bobs I feel like the time is dragging by. I don’t really want lunch but I had to eat something. Younger child is still not eating great, & hubby’s appetite is poor too. We all sit at the island pushing grapes around our plates.

13.15 – I take younger child next door for the afternoon with a backpack of activities & his iPad. My neighbor wished me luck & not to worry about the little guy, he will be fine gardening with her husband. We are really lucky to have such lovely neighbours.

13.50 – I check in at the ultrasound department & go straight in to get changed. I won’t let hubby leave, but they don’t normally allow people in. The nurse talks to the doctor & it’s all fine in the end – phew!

14.10 – The doctor doing the injection had been present at the radiology rounds where they discussed my case. He has done this procedure many many times, but usually after some sort of trauma which I have not had. He spoke with a soft Caribbean accent & had an excellent bedside manner. I was nervous, but felt more comfortable with the procedure once he explained his rational for doing it & what they actually saw on the MRI. He made sure I was comfortable after I chose to lay on my side, with hubby right there in front of me – I was squeezing his hand before anything happened.

The doctor told me when he was going to begin & proceeded to insert the needle & inject local anaesthetic under ultrasound guidance. He aimed right at the spot in which he could see the problem & I complained to be the most painful. It was a positive thing that these two things correlated. Then he injected…

OMFG!!

I can only describe it as intense pressure that causes sharp severe pain. It was just as horrible as I thought it was going to be (I’ve have other joint injections so I kinda knew what to expect). Looking back now it didn’t last long, but at the time it felt like forever. He was good enough to give the local a few minutes to work before he injected the steroid. It was all fine until he injected right on that spot again, brutal. I tried as best I could to relax & breathe normally when I wanted to scream & cry & swear & curse & then it was over and that was it.

14.30 – I climbed off the bed shaking, & for the first time in six months I bent the knee without pain. However, I have forgotten how to walk properly.

15.10 – We pick elder child up from school & bless him he had brought me a little pressie back from his field trip. He could have quite easily spent the money on himself, but no, he bought me a really nice wall hook for my craft room & he gave the rest of the money to a friend who didn’t have enough to buy something she wanted.

15.40 – At home I pop next door to pick up the little guy who is much better (so can totally go back to school tomorrow) & spend 10 minutes trying to extract myself from my neighbor who can talk about nothing for days, possibly even weeks.

20.00 – After a stressful busy day I soak in the bath – I have a very pink leg I need to scrub clean – & hubby brings me a little glass of Rose (I never use those little glasses, 2 mouthfuls & it’s gone!). He places it down on the sink top behind me; I have a little moan about the inadequate size of the contents. I am just about finished my chapter so I reach back to get my bookmark &…

I’m sure he thinks I did it on purpose to get rid of those small glasses!

Whirlwind Wednesday…

06.30 – As predicted the little guy is quite sick, so now that’s two down.

07.20 – Off to school because elder child has choir. I take the dog with me so she can have a good run in the park.

08.45 – I return to the sanatorium to find the 2 of them lying at each end of the sofa sharing a blanket. I play nurse, although the cat seems to have it all under control (she thinks that lying very close to your head when your sick will help in some way).

09.20 – I do some laundry, some pilates, & finish the wedding card I’m making, in between playing nurse. I answer a call from the hospital reminding me that I have an appointment tomorrow for a joint injection in my knee – not sure why they thought I would forget about this as they only booked it yesterday! Twenty minutes later I get another call from the hospital wanting to arrange an appointment for my joint injection – I swear it was the same woman – she was very put out when I informed her that I have one for tomorrow. She then put me on hold while she checked this, presumably in case I was completely imagining this & the phone call she had made to me earlier. Yes, I was right, she was happy I was telling the truth!

12.00 – I get ready to go back to school & receive an email from the head honcho informing me that she had taken delivery of large donation from a parent who supplies toy stores & she had sorted everything into categories. I am then desperate to get to school asap, beside myself that she will have completely &#%$ed up my system!

12.35 – I arrive at school to find her organizing some prize baskets for a separate stall & she informs me that she didn’t add the donated prizes to my system because she didn’t want to &#%$ it up – PHEW! All is right in the world again.

13.00 – I am knee deep in stuffies when the mum who looked after my table yesterday arrives to help me sort. We get to work counting the prizes & stuffies, then box them up & label them.

Various people are in & out chatting because the room we are using is where the photocopier is – it was all very sociable.

15.10 – The other mum has to leave & I pop up to the lower school to hand over a drink & snack to older child because he’s involved in an iPad workshop until 4.30pm. I happen upon him the minute I walked into the lobby, he apparently was about to call me & declare imminent death by starvation because he had eaten all his food & would be going straight to field hockey after school – honestly, total drama queen!

15.30 – Off to the dollar store again for some supplies we have run out of – rubber bands, clear gift bags etc. I am wilting so I duck into a coffee shop & order a gigantic latte to go.

16.00 – Back at school I’m on a mission. I am determined that when I leave at 4.30pm I will be done, finished, complete! Then… I find a note from the head honcho – she’s rearranged some of the balloon prizes by taking some more out of my general prize boxes – NOOOOOOOO!!!!

16.30 – Mission accomplished. I pick up elder child to find that snacks were provided at the workshop so had been no need for the amateur dramatics – he still ate my snack too of course.

16.50 – Home to change into hockey gear & back out to drop him off.

17.35 – Back at the sanatorium it is clear that the little guy will have to be off school tomorrow. Hubby is already off so he can take me to the hospital, but we can’t take a sick child with us & I really don’t think it’s fair for him to see them sticking needles in mum’s knee. I see that my neighbor is in (they are like surrogate grandparents to our boys), so I pop over to ask if there is anyway they could help out. The answer is yes – great!

18.40 – I have to go back out to pick up from hockey.

19.30 – I am in my pj’s, under my blanket fort eating chocolate & colouring!

Tired & painful Thursday…

02.20 – Hubby’s pager goes off & they called the wrong person!

03.20 – Still awake…

04.20 – Pain in my knee & lower leg is nagging so much I consider getting up.

06.20 – Must have fallen asleep at some point because the radio wakes me up.

06.40 – Hubby brings me a bucket of tea as part of my resuscitation strategy. He takes elder child to running club.

07.35 – Younger child & I leave for school early because I have volunteering duties.

07.55 – Dog abandoned in the car – which is parked in the cool underground parking lot. I leave the sunroof open for her & she curls up for a nap, which I’m very jealous of. I pack younger child off to his classroom & greet elder child as he returns from his run – he wants to hug me but he’s very sticky and gross!I don’t want to discourage this sort of affection in public so I cautiously hug him.

08.00 – The head honcho of the parent support group & I set up our donation table. This year we are having our first family fun night & have asked people to donate good quality, gently used stuffies & unopened toys for our prize table, which I am in charge of. As grand prizes we already have a 5ft monkey, dinosaur and frog – & I am praying desperately that neither child of mine is fortunate to win one of these hideous creatures!

08.30 – We have had a great response & have sold a stack of tickets. I leave to take the dog to the park.

08.45 – The park is sunny & beautiful so for the first time in forever I am just in a sweater & no gloves. The walk is painful, and tiring for me, but it is something that not only needs to be done but I really enjoy doing it.

09.30 – Home to grab water bottle, send a couple of emails, get some chicken out of the freezer for dinner, then out for Pilates.

11.00 – 12.00 – I have the best instructor. She is sensitive to the fact I’m not in great emotional shape but somehow manages to motivate me. She is doing everything she can to avoid any more complications occurring because of my knackered knee, & so far so good.

12.30 – Home for lunch while reading the chapter I finished last night, I make some changes & send it to my beta readers. I then pack up 3 guitars, grab drinks & snacks for the boys, & go to my guitar lesson.

14.30 – Great guitar lesson, again my teacher somehow manages to keep me focused & I play a song I’ve been struggling with for a while.

15.05 – Drive to school

15.15 – I meet the boys at younger child’s locker (we do this every Thursday, older picks up younger from his classroom & meets me at the locker to save time) we grab his stuff, & then head back to the car to get back to their guitar lessons for 15.30. My elder child & I have the same teacher. Younger child has someone who appears to be from the same planet as him.

15.27 – I open the door & push them out so they can start their lesson while I find parking.

16.00 – I’ve had 20 minutes to look at my social media and play a game of patience!

16.20 – Home, feed animals, do homework & reading.

17.20 – I’m about to start dinner because hubby should be home soon but my next door neighbor wants to come & look at my new craft room. She doesn’t draw breath for over half an hour, so when hubby gets home at 6pm my ears are bleeding I haven’t started cooking yet.

18.30 – I moan & complain about the pain. Hubby puts wine in the fridge for me!

19.30 – I write a reply email to my doctor which I haven’t sent yet because I have a good old moan to him about my pain & I’m not sure if I should be laying it on with a trowel so thickly – I’ll ask hubby to vet it first.

20.00 – I need a soak in the bath & a large tub of ice cream to go with my wine.

… and then there’s Tuesday!

07.45 – Boys wait at the front of the house to be picked up by another mum. I have my appointment with the surgeon at 08.30 so she kindly offered to swing by & scoop them up.

08.25 – I arrive at the doctor’s office feeling quite nauseous & a little scared at what the outcome of this consultation will be.

09.25 – I leave the doctor’s office in tears. Not because there is nothing further to be done, but because I’m to have MORE imaging & a joint injection before she will contemplate putting me under the knife.

09.35 – Hubby is already late for a meeting, but we are driving past the post office & have a envelope to pick up which we know is our eldest new passport. Hubby reverses the car into someone which I feel is my fault – don’t ask long story – There is very little damage, the paintwork will polish up on the other car but the guy is being a complete tosser about the whole thing. I leave them to thrash it out & go to collect the passport.

09.50 – Drop hubby at work with his bike & leg it home because my rheumatologist is calling at 10.

10.05 – Emotional conversation with my doctor about the management of my knee, he is also suggesting that a joint injection is the only thing that hasn’t been done – there has also been some discussion about chopping of the head of my fibula off – I want to throw up at this point because this was also discussed with my surgeon. I suggest that he talks to her so they can agree on what pictures they want & if there will be any chopping at all.

10.20 – I’m in absolute tatters so I call hubby who I know is busy. He is & will call me back as soon as he can.

10.45 – I look like panda while talking to hubby. I am much calmer after coming off the phone.

11.00 – 14.30 – I write another chapter, do laundry, watch the rain fall & practice my guitar – which sounded better today.

14.35 – I leave early for school to pick up a few groceries on the way.

15.10 – I pick up my younger son & his field hockey buddy from the class next door. His mum is a teacher at the school, she gives me his hockey gear and we confirm the arrangements. This is the first night back at practice, I won’t bore you with the details but they changed the location, which has completely screwed up all our plans because the original location is at the end of our street – walking distance.

15.30 – Arrive home with hockey boys. They get changed, do homework & eat dinner in less than an hour.

16.45 – We arrive back to school, waiting for us in the parking lot is hubby, elder child, hockey buddy’s sister (who is the same grade as my eldest) & their mum, the teacher. I swop hockey boys for their siblings, hubby puts his bike on the back of our car, I had over school uniform & homework to mum and then drive back home again.

17.00 – 19.00 – I feed, water, & do homework with siblings, listen to guitar practice, wash gym kit after muddy track & field session, feed animals, & sort out lunches. Teacher mum drops off hubby & my younger son, both require defrosting – and they were wondering why I was offering to stay home and do the feeding & ferrying about part.

… & this will now be why I will also be drinking wine on a Tuesday!!

 

 

Crying for help…

When it all just gets too much a meltdown is the only way to go. No matter what is said, how it is said, or who says it, nothing will prevent the inevitable happening. No matter how strong you have been in the past, at the moment you give in you feel a failure, not only letting yourself down, but also those who love you. A person can only take so much before they are they just give up on him or herself.

Where to next? I need somebody to just take charge & tell me because I have no clue. No more scans or injections, or drugs, how difficult can it be, isn’t it time to just open it up & take a proper look. It’s been almost 6 months now – I just want it to get better!!!

Pay Attention: Flying pigs!

Have you ever had an experience in which one minute you think it’s all going to be fine & sorted out, but the next it changes & you have no clue what’s going to happen next? In recent years this has been the story of my life & it’s time I had a break from it all. I would just like to know where I stand for once, just for a while – forever would be nice but that’s stupid & unrealistic.

In my own little fantasy world I believe that all the difficult times I’ve had are for a good reason. Constantly testing me will one day pay off, & it’ll all have been worth it. Maybe I’ll sell enough books to replace our roof – If you see a pig flying then you know I have! Until then I’ll just keep paying attention because it could all change again tomorrow.

 

 

 

Diary of a bump!

How does a knee look dislocated, or out of place, & mechanically doesn’t move correctly, & yet 2 x-rays, a CT, and an MRI scan suggest it isn’t?

I’ve known for sometime time that this wasn’t going to be straight forward, my gut told me that. When the MRI suggested inflammation, a shot of intra-muscular steroids worked initially, enough that I could remove my knee brace briefly at Christmas, but it still wasn’t right. Next it was oral steroids, & finally a few weeks ago the joint was injected superficially. I have been wearing an industrial knee brace for 4 months now. I don’t like the knee to bend while being loaded (up or down stairs), especially if it also rotates (getting in or out of the car). It aches most of the time, especially after walking any distance. When I sit with my knees bent at 90 degrees, you can spot the protrusion from across the room, it is that obvious. It wakes me up at night if it’s bent for too long. It doesn’t really respond to painkillers, it prefers rest – which my life does not allow, & ice numbs it temporarily.

It has been a mystery to every professional that has examined it, until today…

The appointment to see a colleague of my own rheumatologist that was scheduled for 7 weeks time was brought forward to today. This particular physician is good at ultrasound, which sounds a bit basic when you consider all the other imaging I’ve had. It was difficult to pack my full history into a 5minute conversation, but he was able to get an idea of where I was regarding my disease. Then he put the probe right on the bony prominence that is also very tender. What he clearly saw was bone, extra bone on the head of my fibula. Nothing was out of place; there wasn’t any obvious inflammation, just unusual bone growth. Lying on top of that bone is tendon, now under tension because it’s being stretched & rubbed on bone that normally wouldn’t be there– he described it as ‘runners knee’ without the running.

He has never seen before, & clearly nobody else had so that’s why it’s been difficult to diagnose.

YAY! Finally, a diagnosis. But what about treatment?

If this was a real runners knee, rest, ice, non-steriodals etc. All the usual things you would expect for a sports injury, but this is not a real runners knee, it’s disease related. The treatment will only help with symptoms, it won’t stop the bone growing. In reality, unless my orthopaedic surgeon has any bright ideas, like shaving the extra bit off, I’m stuck with it! So, if my writing doesn’t make it into the spotlight, my unique knee will! It will be presented to other professionals, hopefully on Friday, at a radiology meeting. Maybe somebody else has seen something similar, or can suggest some other management.

I succeeded in holding back the tears until I left the room. Thankfully my husband was with me. He always tries to stay positive in this situations – one of us has to. I have always had a feeling deep down that this would go under the knife, I don’t know why, I just did. Maybe because of the way everyone looked at it, curiously worried at what they were missing. The thought of someone shaving my bone makes me feel physically sick & very emotional. I can’t begin to describe how upset I am, & overwhelmed with anger at having to deal with more pain and discomfort.

At what point is it decided that I’ve suffered enough?