I put the word uncertainty in the title of this post because that’s how I feel about this right scoped hip right now, walking by faith because there’s just no other way for me to walk anymore(or on many days, limp–ha ha, small hip joke there), and patience because I continue to have to learn this virtue daily, by the minute, many times by the second. When I asked God for certain things 3 years ago, one of them was to learn patience, I had no idea what he had in store as a way to teach that to me.
I’ve been continuing with my chiro doing ART weekly and seeing the trainer once a week (doing 2 other work outs at home that mirror what we do in our sessions each week). About 3 weeks ago my chiro released every muscle around my hips and it totally destabilized me and made me miserable, for about a week after that I got tight in all my muscles, but then regained the pelvic stability. I decided to take a week off of ART, and over that next week the horrible tightness decreased some and my pelvis kind of slid into place. I decided I was going to limit the ART around my pelvis for now, because my sacrum hasn’t been this aligned for 2 weeks straight for years, so that was a positive! Anyways, I was talking with my trainer today and I definitely have gained some stability in my upper back, shoulders, lumbar back, SI joint, and all over pelvis as compared to 2 months ago. The right hip however is a different story.
Despite the improvements in my body, my right hip continues to fight me. I literally have to consciously contract the muscles around it and hold them with every step I take all day long, otherwise the hip falls out of place in the socket, my pelvis rotates forward and my low back compensates and creates worse pain. It’s so frustrating that no matter how much I’ve tried strengthening over the past few months, it just doesn’t respond well to it. I’ve tried not strengthening it and I feel even worse. I still can’t walk distances, and by distances I mean if I tried to walk around a block or two I would flare my body up. I walk in/out of church, daycare, the public library weekly with my Pre-K son, in/out of chiro’s office, restaurants, etc…you get my point. I took my son to the park the other day because it was so beautiful. Being that my daughter was in school he wanted mommy to walk around with him as he played, so I walked to the swings and sat on a bench, then walked to the sandbox and sat at the bench, and on and on. Within an hour my hip muscles were angry and throbbing and I had to limp out of there in a lot of pain. This is where I’m confused. I’m almost 7 months post op, have been strengthening with some sort of rehab the whole time, and still am this limited. I just don’t get it.
I emailed my surgeon several weeks ago and last week his PA got back to me saying they wanted me to get a hip injection to see if that helped my pain and issues surrounding the right hip. I’m going to be frank, I remember getting my other hip injected 2 years ago and it’s not pleasant. You do get a numbing shot but then they pull out this huge needle and stick it in your groin area and shove it into the hip capsule (guided under live x-ray) and shoot in some lidocaine and steroid. Not exactly a fun experience. I had it set up for last Friday, but my daughter got sick Thursday afternoon, sent home from school so I cancelled the appointment Friday morning (thinking it was a sign from God that maybe I didn’t need the injection). Well, after the weekend and my day Tuesday I thought I better go ahead because we need to figure out what exactly is going on, so I was able to get it scheduled for next Thursday (then I see my surgeon a week after that so we can talk about if it made a difference or not). I constantly wonder can this truly be only muscular as suggested by the back specialist PT at OSU? Him and his colleague both said the issues I have still are not consistent with dysplasia; however before my other hip progressed the last few months before the surgery to correct the dysplasia I had on it, the instability and easily over loaded muscles are the symptoms I experienced on it as well. Then as it progressed I started getting the clunking and popping of it when I moved. I am set to see another PT at OSU, at the campus location, supposedly the one they send many patients to who are more complex. I go Monday, and am going to see if he will let me come consistently down to see him throughout the summer. My trainer has helped me significantly and I still would like to see him, hoping somehow the two can work together from a distance on me. My trainer knows exercise, and he knows how hard to push/not push me; however him and my chiro have limited experience with hip patients (especially a “complex” one like myself who everyone is stumped by), so I feel like I want to exhaust every option before starting to think about going under the knife again. I figure if this truly is just a muscle issue (which again I find it hard to believe) then someone who has rehabbed hundreds of hips would be a good person to have seeing and following me to help me either 1.fully recover or 2.decide I need the PAO on the right hip.
Some good news is that my primary doctor and I were worried about some things with me so she sent me to a rheumatologist to get checked out, but via blood work and exam he ruled out any autoimmune dysfunction. He did say he suspected EDS as well and wants me to continue with my plan to see a geneticist. I have an appointment in July, but want to make sure it’s covered by insurance first, as the medical bills pour in each month, I don’t think it’s worth pursuing the diagnosis if it’s not covered or very pricey. She also had me start something to help with the nerve pain and calm my nervous system which felt like it had been fried from living with so much pain for so long. It definitely has made a difference in the nerve pain and feeling that I was going to jump out of my skin from the pain. I was against medication for so long, but am glad now I started something, it really has made daily tasks more tolerable.
Despite the frustrations and constant pain and limitations I have daily I’ve been able to cope a bit better. When I feel myself getting down I start thinking of the blessings I have in life and repeat them over and over to myself and it does help. The few sunny warm days we’ve been having help to put me in a better mood. I try and take things a day at a time and pray when I am weak or when I start to worry about the future. Some of the things I worry about are first of all that we are going to Guatemala next month to visit my husband’s family and normally I would be super excited because I love them all and we haven’t been there in 2 years, but I am scared about the traveling. I can’t sit very long due to pain, and the plane rides are freaking me out due to this. I know I cannot walk the airports very far, so will need either a wheelchair or to ride in one of those cars. I get embarrassed about those things. I purposely have avoided shopping due to the same reason. I have like 3 pairs of shorts for summer (thanks to the 12 lbs I’ve gained in the past year) and don’t think I can physically walk around a store to find some I like, try them on, then stand in line to pay. So so frustrating! I’m also worried about work. I had to stop working last April, thought I would take this school year off then be good to go by fall. Well the time has come and the other OT’s have reached out to ask me if I am coming back in the fall and unless something significant happens for my hip to miraculously heal and start working, there’s no way I can do my job in 3 months. It breaks my heart because I love my job and I love my co-workers and the kids I worked with, but lately I’ve been thinking maybe it’s just not in the cards for me. Maybe my plan for what I want to do is just not God’s plan for me, at least right now. I’m sad but learning to accept that reality in many areas of life. I have been working online on a program to improve my Spanish so I can become more fluent with it. I’m hoping I can use it maybe in a job someday, or if I am able to volunteer somewhere where it would be useful, or if nothing else just to better communicate with my mother in law who doesn’t speak English. It gives me a purpose for now, something to look forward to and a goal to work towards that doesn’t involve my hips (which is something I need for mental health).
Anyways, those are my main worries for now, but like I said I am constantly giving them to God daily trusting that he has a plan for all of this, that he will get me through the trip to Guate without being too miserable, that if I am meant to return to the job I want it will happen and if not then it’s not meant to be, that he is growing my faith and trust in him, that he wants me to put my securities in him vs all the other things I’ve put them in my whole life. Thanks for reading….