Setbacks are Part of the Journey
My husband finally got me to go see an orthopedic doctor. He’s been hearing me whine about the pain in my knees and watching me hobble around our apartment just about every day for the past year. And every day he's been telling me “you need to see a doctor” but I’ve been stalling by giving him what I felt were valid excuses. You see, I’ve been suffering with knee pain since I was 12 years old, when the doctors found out that I had Osgood Schlatter disease (an overuse injury that can develop in children who are athletic. It causes a painful lump on the knee bone and typically resolves itself on its own once the bone stops growing). It didn’t require surgery but my doctor still had me in a full leg cast for 3 months.
But the pain never went away, I've just learned to live with it. And it became my normal. I don’t know any other life other than one where bending, squatting, running and even walking all come with pain. Since that diagnosis, I’ve been to two other orthopedic doctors and each time I left without a solution. All that I have been told is that I have “slight overuse”, "bone spurs”, but no treatment offered to stop the pain.
For the past month, I’ve been committed to my fitness and working out 6 days a week, which is great, but my knees have paid the price. The pain has gotten to the level of unbearable and I have to do a lot more walking living in the city, so I finally listened to my husband and made an appointment to get my knees checked out.
The orthopedic doctor took me through the usual line of questioning, a physical and then x-rays. When it came time to discuss the results, I was expecting the usual “tough luck, pain is a way of life” diagnosis. But not this time. I found out that I have osteoarthritis in both knees, a piece of bone that’s floating around in my right and oh yea, the Osgood Schlatter that’s supposed to resolve itself - well it hasn’t and I still have remnants left.
As I write this, I’m fighting back the discouragement from taking over and causing me to give up.
After I finished with the doctor, I drowned my feelings in a pepperoni and spinach calzone from Lombardi’s. Yes, it was delicious but I know better than that. It’s like the devil knows when you’re trying to do something to better yourself and BAM he throws something at you to try to set you back. So I am forcing myself to focus on the positives... Doctor says I can still workout as much as the pain allows, I still have function in both of my legs and I finally, finally, finally have answers.
My next steps are to get an MRI scheduled, which will help the doctors determine the best treatment plan for me. Worst case scenario I will need arthroscopic surgery. Best case, I will just need physical therapy. I’m praying that surgery won’t be necessary, but I now have hope that I will soon have a new pain-free normal. Hallelujah!
So my question to you, outside of losing weight, which I’m working on, do you know of any natural remedies for arthritis? Whether it’s eye of newt or chicken foot soup, let me know, I’m willing to try.