Monday, January 26, 2009

A Bump In The Road

Dr. Lauren Triplett-Schweickart has been a familiar face for the past month or so. She has been doing a little work on the second toe of my left foot. Being diabetic, I have learned the importance of good foot care (a fact that I basically ignored for about 52 years). Anyhow, Dr. Triplett-Schweickart has had me in a special boot which is constructed to keep the weight on the back of the foot and allow the lack of pressure on the toes, to hasten the healing process. It's been a little inconvenient, but basically not a major problem - that is until I broke my "good foot".
Last night I spent four hours in the Emergency Room at Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital. Now, I usually try to avoid hospitals like the plague, but there comes a time when you gotta go. I had been limping around on a sore right foot all week. On Tuesday I complained to my secretary that the "good foot" hurt worse than the bad one. There was no swelling or indication of any problem, so I continued to gimp along all week. When I got up Sunday morning the right foot was swollen, red, and hot to the touch. My immediate diagnosis was that I had picked up some kind of infection, but I couldn't figure how. There were no cuts or abrasions. After all, the left foot was the one where the cutting had been done. It hurt pretty badly, but it was Sunday morning, and I DO work on Sundays. So, I forced on my right diabetic shoe and went about my regular Sunday morning activities, planning to contact "Dr. T-S" on Monday. However, by the time I got home from church, the pain was such that I was afraid to delay seeking treatment for another day. At Linda's urging we headed for the familiar confines of Bellefonte Hospital.

The ER doctor could not find any evidence of any cuts or wounds that could have been a gateway for infection to begin. "We're going to run some tests to see what else it could be. We'll have to rule out a blood clot first", he said. I had never had any problems with blood clots before. In fact, I have been taking the blood thinner, Coumadin, for four years - but - better safe than sorry. They did an ultrasound from thigh to ankle and then wheeled me over for three xrays of the bad appendage. When the doctor came back in to my ER cubicle he said, "The good news is there is no blood clot."


"The bad news is, you have a fracture in the second metatarsal bone."


(see the location of the break in the diagram below)

I had no clue there was a broken bone. How had it happened? I had been to the gym three times last week, but had been on the elliptical machine, which is low impact compared to the treadmill. There had been no falls or any trauma to the foot that I could recall, so the cause of the break is a mystery. A nice nurse came in and moulded a splint from toe to knee and wrapped it up with about a hundred Ace bandages, and gave me instructions to contact Orthopedist, Dr. Robert Love this morning for an appointment. Meanwhile, crutches, no weight bearing on the right foot, keep the foot elevated, antibiotics just for good measure, and percocets as needed for pain.

Life is full of the unexpected. I have come to expect this. While I am frustrated at being temporarily laid up, and very concerned about how I am going to be able to drive with whatever the doctor does to the foot, I have not "lost it" like the "pre-cancer C.J." would have. (Just ask Linda and the boys). There are a number of things that I have learned in life as a result of coming to face my own mortality. I've had a lapse or two along the way, but in situations like this one, I have come to two conclusions:

1. Don't sweat the small stuff.

2. Basically, it's ALL small stuff!

Three weeks from today we are scheduled to land in Dumaguete City to begin a two week mission trip and crusade in the Philippines. I'm not sure how this new bump in the road will affect the logistics, but I know that none of the events of this week have come as any surprise to my God. It's all part of His perfect plan. Therefore, I will wait with anticipation to see how He may get some glory out of this situation, as He continues to weave the tapestry of my life.

We never know where the bumps will be, but one thing for sure - it's a great ride!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Sounds like you have a stress fracture. Please update your blog after you see the doctor.

Best to you..........