As is usual for an autumn Sunday morn, we started the day with a short walk, then applied ourselves to pumpkin pancakes, bacon, and newspapers. That accomplished, we seem to have set out on chores. Rick is mowing the lawn(s), while grandson #2 tackles weeding and raking. Myself – I have cleaned bathrooms, started laundry, and made cookies.
I should also run the vacuum cleaner. I really should.
*Warning: the rest of this is about health issues that may only be fascinating to me. I’ll forgive you if you wander off.
In the meantime, my feet hurt. This is more than shoes wearing out or walking too far. Truth be told, my feet have been hurting for a long time. As in more than a year. Two years? I don’t know. It’s the kind of thing one tends to ignore at first, when the pain is sporadic, and only slightly noticeable when it does appear. It’s easy to not pay attention as it worsens. Until every step hurts, and burning, aching feet are even disturbing my dreams.
I have peripheral neuropathy. Nerve damage.
There are many causes of neuropathy, but none of them are an obvious culprit in my case. My level of B-12 has dropped precipitously in the last three years, but even so, it is still within the normal range. I’ve started taking a supplement. Previous injury is always a suspicion, as I suffered a ruptured disc several years ago – a problem that required surgery. While my back seems to have recovered nicely, I find myself left with nerve issues, such as the occasional bout of sciatica, or a leg that needs a moment to orient itself. I sort of suspect that my restless legs are a result of that, too. Oh, and arthritis, of course.
Nerves are finicky things, and as near as I can tell, they don’t respond well to treatment. There is certainly no cure for neuropathy. The doctor has given me pills to reduce the pain, but so far, there has been no effect. I’m supposed to up the dosage each week until I reach an amount that helps. Tonight, I’m up to three pills.
I hate throwing pills at a problem. I don’t want to be one of those old people taking twenty pills a day, most of them prescribed to counteract the side effects of the other pills. But I seem to be heading in that direction.
Happily, my blood pressure has been lower, although it has not quite reached normal levels. The systolic pressure is now only slightly high, but the diastolic is much higher than it should be. I suspect the answer is, as always, more exercise. Which has just become more complicated because of my darn feet. I want to hike for four hours several days a week. But I’m in agony after just half an hour. I’m afraid this will also put a damper on my plans for dancing lessons, Tai Chi, and cross-country skiing.
Okay, that last one was a joke. I’ve never been on skis in my life.
I hope the pills start to work though, because I seriously want those dance lessons.