Radiology Rhetoric and Invitation to my party ūüéČ

I’m reading my MRI results on my left foot ,with a dictionary by my side ,to decipher the radiologist’s findings. Two pages long full of medical/technical terms. He does sound rather intelligent and knowledgeable in his report. But I couldn’t understand any of it.

My bone fracture has healed but apparently there are many more issues with my foot that continue to cause high levels of pain during my beloved activities of hiking and tennis. Even just walking.

I am sidelined from all impact type activities and back in a boot for the next month. After my hour or so long pity party, I decided to research exactly what’s causing all my pain.

The only thing I heard during my doctors appointment was ” Get back in the boot and stop having any kind of fun” . Okay, not a direct quote ,but that’s what I heard.

Here is the best translation I could come up with from the MRI report using google/dictionary

1. I have bone marrow swelling where the tendons and ligaments attach to my heel bone with some widening … of something around there . This is caused by response to an injury. ( guessing the heel fracture started all that )

2. Swelling ( large amounts of fluid) were found inside my ankle joint and on the bottom of my heel.

3. The tendon that attaches to the underside of my foot and controls movement in my ankle is disturbed deep enough to compress a nerve.

4. I have a longitudinal split tear. Also ,at least, a partial thickness tear. He suggested an ultrasound to confirm/enhance the findings.

5. My planter fascia is over double the thickness of a normal fascia.

6. Combine all this together and it equals planter fasciitis with tears to tendons and ligaments. With severe swelling /compression/tightening/ causing intense pain.

7. Treatment: start with a month in the boot and extremely limited activity. Ice and Motrin. Keep foot elevated as much as possible.

8. Re-evaluate and when healed begin PT and possible cortisone shots. Then consider slowly trying activities.

Once again, my goal of finishing all the hikes on my trail map is sidelined.

My love/hate relationship with Tennis is on hold. Love the sport but hate the lack of my ability to put together everything I’ve learned into practice during a match.

My hiking club is without a leader.

I feel another pity party coming on so I best stop here.

Sincerely,

Gimp

ps: you’re invited to my party

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=6bAPlojfgO0

Selfie after first pity party, but at least I was having a good hair day ūüėČ

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Hiking Club Shenanigans

What do you do when a friend suggests starting a hiking club?

Jump up and down and agree to it immediately? Yes, that’s what I did! How fun to have a group to share adventures with!

We are starting off with 7 members and 5 of us were able to do the first hike today.

We selected a short local favorite hike, Fatmans Loop. If you veer off this trail you can climb to the top of Mt. Elden.

Fatmans Loop

Click the link above for more info on this hike and it’s unique name.

One of our members had to turn around after 30 minutes into hike due to prior commitments. This is the text she sent us during her descent back down.

She didn’t even scream . Maybe because she knew it was just a milk snake and totally harmless. But look how long it is!!!

This hike is known for being a bit rocky and dusty with very little shade on the climb up. But thanks to recent moisture from a Spring snowstorm last week we were treated to some color to brighten the otherwise dreary landscape.

Next week we are tackling a section of the Arizona Trail ! So stay tuned.

Hopefully I won’t have to do this after every hike.

Heading back to foot doc today for a follow up.

Hopefully there is no mention of “rest” or “boot” or lecture on not ” over doing” it. Ha! As if I can be reasonable and moderate in my desire to hike and play tennis.

Be serious!

Arizona Trail and Tempting Detours

I am going to finish hiking all the sections of the Arizona Trail that run through Flagstaff by the end of May and thus so completing all the trails on my Flagstaff hiking map. I will add up the mileage and number of hikes once I complete these few last sections.

The forecast is predicting 3 inches of snow between 11pm tonight and 11am tomorrow but this afternoon you’d never believe it.

Bright blue skies and a comfortable 68 degrees as I began this sectional hike. An occasional gust of chilly wind was the only clue the weather change might be coming.

This section of the AZ trail goes from Walnut Canyon to Fisher Point. Last year I hiked from Fisher Point towards Walnut Canyon ,so to complete this section I started at Walnut Canyon until I reached the intersection I had previously turned around on. I’m sure there was a much clearer way to explain that.

Anyways, the trail was rocky but relatively flat until the switchbacks started leading me down into the canyon. But first..

I saw this chewed to the bone deer leg near the side of the trail and tried not to think about whatever it was that had gnawed on it.. not to mention completely ripped it off the deers body.

As I continued hiking I saw several other various bones and all of a sudden I had this incredible desire to find all the bones of this poor deer and try to reconstruct it. Not that I thought I could bring it back to life, but more like a puzzle;fitting all the pieces together. You know, how people try to reconstruct dinosaur bones all together? Yes, I have a weird brain. But I also have a terrible sense of direction and knew if I went in search of all the bones I’d most likely get way off trail and be lost forever until someone found my bones scattered all around the woods and put me back together to try and identify me. Then I got to thinking about being gnawed on like the deer and hastily dismissed all thoughts on this matter.

There is little to no water to be found on a majority of the Arizona Trail. So this handmade ” game water” sign intrigued me. Was this truly notification of water nearby? Was this how the predator lured the deer closer? Was it a mind game? Why was it protected by a barbed wire fence? Such mystery. Upon closer inspection I saw this:

Looks like metal roofing laying on the ground. I see no water. Nor water troughs. Doesn’t appear to be constructed to collect water. The barbed wire and thoughts of the gnawed deer like kept me from further exploration.

Back on the rocky trail and onto the switchbacks led to beautiful views and glimpses of the canyons beauty which eased my mind back into a peaceful purposeful hike.

Some darker clouds made an appearance and suggested rain might be on its way. And if temperatures drop that rain could turn to snow. Oh Flagstaff , how I love your quirkiness! No April showers or May flowers for this city. Too ordinary and expected .

I finished the rest of the section I needed to and uneventfully so.

Though some sweet soul left ” trail magic” for the hardy through hikers.

I might return to this spot someday and leave trail magic. The kind of trail magic I’d like to find. The stuff you’d never carry in your backpack .

I’m thinking an ice chest full of raspberry chocolate, ice cold raspberry ale, fruity ice cream bars, raspberry lemonade-and slushees. Hmm. Can you tell what I crave when I’m on a long hike?

Until next exciting adventure,

We meet again!!

Today was an adventure . I just love adventure.

Sunday started out as an ordinary day but thankfully didn’t end as such.

I was driving a meal out to a friends house , a house which I’ve never been to before. It’s a bit out of town and in a beautiful location of acres upon acres of open space. I rang the door bell and my friends husband opened the door while struggling to keep his overly eager dog from jumping on me. He smiled and said, ” Just come on in.” He turned his back towards me as he walked and held tightly onto his dogs collar. I followed him in and then IT happened.

I found myself staring into the eyes of someone I never thought I’d see again!!!

Quick.. what was the first thing that popped into your mind? Who do you think it might have been?

I’m just going to say ..no matter how great of a guess you made ( that is if you even tried to guess) you’d be wrong.

How can I be so sure? How sure am I ? So sure, I’d bet my life on it.

Is the suspense killing you? Or boring you?

Okay , okay , I’ll just continue.

I was staring directly into the face of the bear I had met on a hike! ( see my blog entitled :Oh Hi, Mr. Freakishly large black bear)

I’d know that face anywhere! And here he was still staring at me. He had obviously been to a taxidermist and been kept with an amazingly happy face and in perfect pose!

I starting laughing so hard that I had to explain my previous encounter and soon we were all laughing. My friends husband is obsessed with bears. He tracked this bear for months and had a friend from Colorado come help him finish the hunt when he acquired a license to hunt a bear. They actually tracked and killed this bear near the same area as I encountered him. Now, I’m not going to go into how I feel about bear hunting.. it would change the tone of this post . But I was able to engage with this hunter and it went something like this.

“Hey, I’m a bear whisperer ” says me.

This comment is returned with a very confused look.

“No, really”, I continue , “you don’t need your friend from Colorado ”

Awkward silence

” If you ever want to meet a bear just take me along and you’ll see in just a few minutes one will saunter right up to me to have a nice little chat” I said trying to fill the awkward silence.

Laughter filled the air, until I just had to go one step too far.

” No, I’m serious ”

Awkward silence returns.

It was my turn to laugh, though inwardly I still think I am a bear whisperer, but realize sometimes it’s best to keep this kind of information a secret. Especially if you don’t want to end up in a straight jacket.

Anyways, I asked them to send me a picture of the bear so I could introduce you to.. poor Cinnamon.

Yes, I named him.

But seriously, look at how cute!!

Now, he may not look ” freakishly large” but one can just assume the taxidermist needed to reduce his size to fit this corner of the home and onto the attractive base.

But, I know that face .

Sincerely,

The bear whisperer

Seriously?

My torn ligament is officially accompanied by a fractured bone. One X-ray told the whole story. Wish I would have taken a pic of it!

So my excitement over new activities has now been reduced to just swimming.

I’ve been given permission to wear my boot to the poolside , remove it and scoot on my behind to edge of pool and carefully slide it making sure my left foot never touched the bottom or side of pool. I repeat this very awkward procedure to sit in the hot tub.

The break is in my heel. But doc believes it will heal without surgery. I’m very thankful for that, and for the ability to swim.

Even though all other activities are suspended for at least 6-8 weeks I am still thankful.

I experienced a day in a wheelchair exploring the very crowded 4th Avenue Street Fair in Tucson. I will, and do,¬†encourage you to have much greater empathy for those confined to a wheelchair. It is not fun. Not relaxing. Not a sign of a weak or lazy human. Make eye contact with these people, offer a smile or encouraging word. And please, above all else, don’t get angry at the person in the chair if you happened to get bumped by it. Look at the person pushing the chair and then the mortified face of the one in the chair who is profusely apologizing and show some mercy!!!!

And if you see someone almost getting dumped on their face while maneuvering a curb in a wheelchair, do not laugh, even if they are laughing, just simply offer to help.

If you see someone in a wheelchair offer to help them reach something that they obviously want but obviously cannot reach from their position. Whether in a grocery store, mall, or crowded street fair.

Crutches are a whole different obstacle and those hobbling on them deserve to be shown extra mercy… such as.. ” Sit here and let me get you what you need” or ” you poor thing, let me buy you a drink and blister cream for your hands and armpits.”

Best thing ever to hear while on crutches, ” let me get you a motorized cart”

Anyways, I am going to become a much more compassionate person through this. And perhaps an élite swimmer!

Time to go now and enjoy each new challenge thrown at me,

Bring it on!

The girl who will never ever take her feet for granted again.

Ps.. acupuncture for a broken bone doesn’t really help much, so at least my palms are getting a rest.