critic’s choice? (part I – i can’t feel my legs)

actually, the title is a bit misleading…

…the problem, in reality, is i CAN feel my legs – or at least one of them – a bit TOO much. three days this week i woke up with a shooting pain that went from mid-thigh to knee on my right leg, kinda towards the front. not a dull, throbbing pain – a wake up cringing saying, “what the fuck?” kinda pain. then, if i adjust how i’m laying (position-wise) it goes away just as quickly.

i thought it was my sciatic nerve – ’cause i know that has something to do with unexplainable leg pain. while i know going to webmd is no substitute for going to the doctor in some of your eyes, for us broke, unemployed, uninsured folk it is – and going off all i read on there sciatica is NOT my problem. of course what is could be any number of things, but then just when i thought my leg was the most of my worries i woke up friday to a dull, throbbing, knot-like pain between my shoulder blades – kinda upper to mid-back pain. not fun. not comfortable. not a big deal, i thought, ’cause i could probably just “work the kinks out” at the gym with low weight and lots or reps – i had done this before a time or two…

…problem was it was cold and wet out.

sue me – when it’s cold and wet out, i crave soup or chili…or better yet, frito pie. for anybody not acquainted with the dish the fancy version (which is really stretching the definition of the word “fancy”) is layering fritos, chili, and cheese (with jalapenos and onions to taste) in a casserole dish. but i have only certain kinds of canned chili i can tolerate (it’s a texan thing) and so i went to see if wal-mart had any (and it’s across the street from the gym, so that made all the more sense). i went to get out of my car and just the subtle upper back/shoulder movement it took to get out of the camaro shot a pain through my back and chest that made me think i might (literally) die. i couldn’t even get out of the car.

i got myself home and to the couch, and save for getting up to pay the pizza hut girl that was about all she wrote for my friday.

not fun. by friday night i was a little better, and a bit stiff this morning but otherwise not bad.

what didn’t help was this morning we felt our first real cold front. it’s the damnedest thing – when it’s warm and sunny and i wake up alone it doesn’t feel bad…but let it be chilly (49 when i got up this morning) and grey and it really starts to sink in that i’m super close to forty, feel like my body is falling apart (although just a quick trip around town shows me i’m in pretty good shape but the odd morning pains don’t help) and i appear to be terminally unemployed and terminally single. this latter brings up the other part of the title (and the reason it’s kind of a two parter):

if a movie critic highly reccommended a movie, but admitted they’d never been to it and had no interest in going, would you trust his (or her) opinion?

i’ll explain that last question next time…

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Leia Oct 12, 2009 @ 2:28

    My guess is slipped or extricated (bulging) disc. I’ve felt that kind of debilitating pain before, but it was in my arms right up to the top of my skull… it almost feels like your body is on fire… very scary. When you can barely move without a pain that literally makes you nauseous it’s definitely cause for concern. But you’d be amazed at how integral the spine is to our entire bodies. Each piece of the spine corresponds to a part of the body, i.e. the upper parts affect the neck and upper back, go lower and it’s the lower back and legs, etc. Obviously don’t take what I say for medical advice (duh), but unless you’re having other symptoms like fever, nausea, dizziness, etc. it’s most likely some sort of spinal situation. I’m so lucky (and grateful) to have health insurance, so I was able to go to my doctor who sent me for an MRI, and sure enough I was diagnosed with an extricated (bulging) disc. The remedy? Short of surgery, which doctors WILL NOT recommend unless it’s an absolute last resort, all you can do is physical therapy (I never followed through) or just simply Live With It. It will only flare up sporadically and of course at the most inopportune times, but there’s nothing else you can do except pop a lot of pain meds (I love ’em but they knock me out for days at a time), lay flat on your back in bed for hours at a time, and curse your very existence.
    The very first time I was truly afflicted (other than past times where I just felt like I had a “pinched nerve” in my neck or back, nothing that didn’t go away after a day or two) was the night Barack Obama was elected president. Don’t know if this is significant or not, but it serves as a pin point. I’m telling you, I really thought I was going to die. The pain was so bad it literally woke me up at night and it hurt to breathe. I was thinking Heart Attack and almost went to the ER. But I decided to give it one more night and sure enough it was a little better the next day. Still extremely painful, but tolerable. And sure enough every day it got a bit better. But it never goes away competely. It will hit at a moment’s notice and I’ll be miserable for at least three days at a time. All I can do is pop my pills, drink a LOT of alcohol (white wine), and wish I was rich so I could go to a masseuse. Oh, those medicated BenGay pads help too… not the ones that are supposed to “heat up”, but the ones that have an adhesive backing that you stick to the afflicted body part. Oh, and Biofreeze (I think you can only get it at a chiropractor’s office, though) is really good too. But other than heroine (I’m imagining), there is not one single thing you can do to make the pain go away except: Take it, Bitch! It sucks, but you know what, Sean? We’re at That Age where shit like this starts to happen. It sucks but it’s the reality. Have you gotten the gray hairs yet? The wrinkles? I have and I’m sick about it, but all I can do is visit the stylist twice a month instead of once every six, and spend ridiculous amounts of money on eye cream that I invariably forget to put on most of the time.
    Which is not to say I’m comparing cosmetic afflictions to physical ones, but they are all related in the sense that it’s what’s happens when you hit that 38-41 Sweet Spot.
    Have you started squinting at the computer/books/menus yet? If not, just wait… that’s coming soon!
    I wouldn’t bet my life on it, but I suspect what you have is some kind of disc thing. You could go to the ER or one of those 24 hour places, but most likely you’ll walk away with a scrip for Roxies and the message “unfortunately all you can really do is go to physical therapy and live with it”.
    That’s MY two cents… hope it helps some. Trust me, I KNOW what it’s like to experience a pain that is so scary and unfamiliar that you really think you’re dying. I suspect if you really are dying, your instincts will kick in and you’ll do what you gotta do… i.e., call 911, call a friend, curl up in a corner, make sure your hair and make up are done, etc. 🙂 Not trying to be facetious… just hoping I can lessen the anxiety. You’re gonna be fine. You’re just Old. Sorry, bro!
    Leia. 🙂

  • sean Oct 12, 2009 @ 15:54

    i love you, leia, and you know this…but two things spring to mind –

    1. is it just me, or is your comment (well written as it may be) longer than my actual bit? it’s a gemini thang, so i get that.

    2. it’s soccer – on this continent, outside of people not FROM this continent, nobody cares…but congrats none the less. 🙂

    you look pretty!

    (hope that last one saved me!)