Tuesday, September 27, 2016

I Wobble

So, y'all know that I've been locked into a fight till the death struggle with my bicycle. Which, incidentally is the cutest thing evar now that she has a basket and a bell. Cuteness aside, it never seems to fail that every time I get on the thing I come away with scrapes and bruises. 

But I'm not giving up. *strikes a confident pose with a wonder woman cape fluttering behind her in the breeze*

One of my recent tumbles off my buckin' bronco bike caused me to land squarely on my new knee joint. Was a real beaut. I was able to get up and walk around on the thing just fine and so was pretty confident that I had not injured the knee implant, but as the bruises developed and it started to swell, I wasn't so sure. So the next day I motored myself over to my doctor's office and presented myself. We had an interesting discussion that took off in a direction that I wasn't counting on. 

"Oh, my! So how did this happen?"

Dr. M is a very nice young woman who didn't know what she was in for when she accepted me into her internal medicine caseload a few years ago. 

I explained all; after which she gave my knee a very thorough examination. "I'm sure that you didn't damage your new joint at all," she said.

"I'm actually more concerned about WHY you fell." 

I fell because that's just how I roll, so to speak. 

She frowned. "So have you fallen when you were not on your bicycle?"

Of course. But I've always been fine afterwards. 

"Why do you think you have fallen when not on your bike?"

Let's see........once because I kind of missed one of the steps going from the house to the garage and planted myself face first on the concrete...."

She winced and held up a hand. "Hang on. You're falling at home? In an area that's very familiar to you?" I nodded. "How many times in the last year?"

I suppose about........three or so.

We went on to have a lengthy discussion about the zillion reasons that may be contributing to my inclination to topple over; during which I was mentally kicking myself for even allowing this particular medical can of worms to be opened. Because I knew what would inevitably follow. And it did:

"I would like you to have a further assessment of your fall risk."

(Hoo boy. Here we go, I thought.)

"I am scheduling you for a Preventing Falls class, and also for some one on one assessments by physical therapy looking at your gait and ambulation skills."

(I knew it. Drat. MORE appointments.) 

After another discussion about using hand rails, lighting up dark areas, wearing my glasses, being vigilant, blah blah blah blah blah......she finally said, "Show me your shoes."

I dutifully stuck one foot out. 

"Those knit fabric type sneakers don't provide any kind of stability for you at all. I want you to go through your shoes and either give away or toss those that don't fit exactly right, those that have high heels, any flip flops at all, and those that are flimsy and don't provide good support for your entire foot including your heels. So no slip-ons."

Curses. I saw the words INCREASED FALL RISK get typed onto my electronic medical record. 

I left grumpily, certain that she had just given me a sentence of life-wearing-awful-ugly-shoes. Like these:

However it didn't take me long to figure out that if I needed to toss a closet full of shoes, then it was only logical that a serious shoe shopping trip should follow. 

Which it did. And sorry John -- I've only just begun.....


anetto said...

Those foot rest shoes you call ugly are just what I need to wear. They bothered me for years but I have gotten used to them. I plash out on the socks

On the plus side I don't limp (much) and I don't fall


Unknown said...

Good to know I should be wary about admitting that I fall pretty often. Also, I really like my tricycle!

Julia Oleinik said...

Hey Annette -- You probably are one of those lucky people that human size feet. Mine, on the other hand range more in the Bigfoot category which is what REALLY makes those shoes ugly, haha!

Eliza J said...

So glad I checked in on you today! I have averaged 3-4 falls a year for the past at least ten years! Your bigfoot category cracked me up! I have worn size 10's for most of my life, but found out 2 years ago that I can finally buy some shoes in 10 1/2! Unfortunately that was not even the correct size and I have found that 11 is...BIGFOOT! Style is important isn't it??? With balance and fall issues, I have worn flats with rubber soles for a very long time. I totally understand. I hope your knee is okay. Haven't had a total knee but probably will eventually as every time I fall, I fall on my right knee! Thank you so very much for your wonderful sense of humor and all the awesome information I have gathered on your blog. As I sit typing this I am looking at topics I will go to next. God bless and thanks again for all the uplifting and awesome information!

Gertie said...

I like both pair of your new shoes. Have fun shopping!!

Anonymous said...

Julia, stopping by to say I looooooove those shoes!
Also want to say how thankful I am for finding this blog; and that you've chosen to keep it going. You've shared your very personal struggles with your dad and mom. I hope I can be there for my folks to the best of my sjoggie/ RA ability. It helps so much to know I really am not the only one in this stupid energy fight. There. That's was my last, but loving spoon for today! 😻

Nicole said...

Nothing wrong with an excuse to go shoe-shopping! :)

Nancy C said...

I have recently come to share your problems with falls that I really don't want to bother with. I'll spare you the details, but I could so identify with your conversation with your doc.
I have to say, tho, that after a back problem this summer -- not resulting from a fall, thank you very much -- I was sent to a PT clinic that is the best ever. Mary Anne has a keen eye for every little move, weakness, and wobble, and advises on corrections with infinite patience. I am walking the best in a whole year.
What's worse is broken bones NOT resulting from falls -- osteoporosis in my right foot, of all things. Again, I'll spare the details.
Anyway, falls are serious business, and they do need attention. Even though many of us would just as soon pretend otherwise!

I hope you can keep on biking. I envy you.

Carol W. said...

I recently had to give away all of my pumps, high wedges, heeled ankle, and knee boots. So sad! I developed neuropathy in my feet and hands over the last year (thanks to Sjogren's), and now have drop foot. Need to replenish my stash too. I also have big foot size 10's. Cute shoes!