Well, it’s finally here – the big day! Today, I was going to see what I hoped would be an actually competent neurosurgeon. One who would do things like, you know, spend more than 30 seconds talking to me, perhaps do an actual examination, give me all of the possible treatment options instead of just the ones he was good at, etc. Little things like that. I was nervous this morning but feeling resolved as I set out for the doctor. There’s nothing I can do to change what’s wrong with my back at this point, so I might as well just hear the verdict and come up with a plan of action, right? Right.
I arrive promptly on time for my 9:45 appointment, as the T-Rex Runner is never late, except for Maniacs pictures. Besides, as a new patient, I knew my appointment wasn’t really at 9:45. Obviously I needed plenty of time to fill out all my paperwork, except homegirl came prepared and printed out all the papers from the interwebs and brought them in already filled out. Boom. So I sat in the waiting room. And I sat. And I kept sitting. And I saw a sign that said “If you have been waiting for longer than 30 minutes and have not been called back to see the doctor, please notify the front desk.” So I did.
Me: “Um, you probably already know this, but it’s been more than 30 minutes and I haven’t been called back yet.”
Staff: “Yeah, he’s running behind. You’ll go back soon.”
Me: “Ok, sorry, the sign just said to tell you, so I told you…”
Staff: “Right, it’s fine.”
Me: “Yeah I mean I just said it cuz of the sign.”
Holy God, I am so awkward. Told you I’m terrible in social situations.
So I finally went back and the nurse says to me, “have you ever had any MRIs or X-rays or anything?” Ummmm yes…like last week…they were supposed to send them here…did you not get them? So the nurse says she doesn’t think so, but she’ll check. Oh man, it was bad. I was instantly freaking out because this is now item number 2303293482 on my list of reasons why I abhor the doctor’s office I went to in Charleston. Meanwhile, a physician’s assistant comes in and does a full examination, tests my reflexes, yada yada yada, gets my whole history. He tells me it’s extremely rare for someone to experience signal loss in their nerves from an injury to the discs that I injured. Oh good. That’s promising.
The nurse comes back in to inform me that they do not, in fact, have my MRIs, but she will call the office and see if they can get them. SERENITY NOW!
So my young cool doctor comes in and tells me there’s…well…nothing they can tell me. At this point I have been at this place for over an hour and a half. And I’m getting no information? He says without looking at the MRI, he can’t give his opinion, tell me his recommendations, anything. I begged him to tell me at least what types of procedures he thinks might be appropriate if the other doctor’s opinion was correct. He just said it depends, but I will need some type of procedure – my injury will not heal itself.
I finally asked the burning question. The big kahuna (I’m going to look up what kahuna actually means because I just realized I have no idea…more on this later). Am I allowed to keep running?
And it was like Jesus lifted me up with his big Jesusy hands and dabbed some holy water on me or something.
“Yes,” he said. “You can run as long as you are not in pain and as long as you have control of your legs.”
EPIC T-REX WIN! He said his opinion may change after seeing the MRI, but that as long as I am not in pain, I am not doing any more damage. So essentially, I can take it one day at a time and there will be marathons I can run and marathons I can’t…for now. Until he sees the MRI.
Upon leaving the room, I am told that the spine doctor in Charleston just sent my MRI up to the office TODAY. GUESS WHOSE APPOINTMENT WAS TODAY? Cue hate spiral.
I left the office fighting back tears of frustration because this whole process has been so asinine. The not knowing is killing me! But I am grateful to be able to run, for now, when I have control of my limbs. And my young cool doctor really is cool. But guess who is going to be in surgery tomorrow and Monday so he won’t be looking at my MRI until Tuesday? That’s right. This is my nightmare.
I took out my frustration on the Southeastern Spine Institute (of Asshats, Inc), aka the Charleston doctors, by writing a scathing review on Google. I am normally way too lazy to review anything other than marathons, so you know I was mad. I think Kristen sensed my rage because she offered to bring me Moe’s for lunch, which I obviously accepted. Sadly, tomorrow I will break my streak of eating a burrito for lunch every weekday for the past 3 weeks, as I have a meeting during lunch and we’re getting Jimmy John’s.
In even more exciting news, I ran 5 miles today quite tolerably. Kristen and I had a marvelous time and enjoyed the beautiful weather. I was so grateful to be running. Injuries have a way of doing that to you. You’ll all undoubtedly be pleased to know that my leg is still attached.
On Saturday, AJ and I will be driving up to Delaware for the Delaware Marathon, which I will hypothetically run. Stay tuned for embarrassing photos of him, because I’m a good