Pain, pain go away…come back another day (preferably in 50 years or so!)

19th May 2002 was the day that has changed the course of my life. It’s the day that I broke my ankle. Doesn’t sound like much does it, maybe I’m being overly dramatic.

But add in that the break was a displaced multi fragmentary fracture of the distal tibia with a severe malalginment of the talus (ankle joint) which has resulted in:

* 2 operations to internally fix the fractures
* surgical fusion of the ankle joint after being told that my entire foot was at risk of collapse
* surgical fusion of the subtalar joint which resulted in 9 months in plaster and a non union of the fusion
* tendon surgery to both sides of my ankle
* multiple stress fractures
*various procedures including nerve blocks, manipulation under anaesthetic, tendon injections, weeks in an aircast boot, physiotherapy etc
*restrictions on my mobility, need for crutches and not being able to do a lot of the activities that I loved or would have loved to have done,

Maybe I’m not being that dramatic though I really should have a season ticket at my hospital 😳

The 19th May 2002 is also the last day that I remember being pain free. I have lived with pain daily since the accident, experiencing both chronic nerve pain where my brain receives pain signals with no stimulus and orthopaedic pain when the next thing goes wrong with my foot…or my knees, hips, back, neck, shoulders. Foot injuries really do impact on your entire body.

It’s difficult to describe an existence with pain. Everyone’s pain is different as is their tolerance and ability to manage. Medications vary – what I take may not work for another person. I’ve been through a lot of medications, prescribed by my gp and pain clinic consultant. I’ve had horrific side effects from some and now struggle with morphine when given post surgery. I was taken off all of my medication in 2007 when they thought it had given me a stomach ulcer (it turned out that I didn’t have an ulcer thankfully) and I have been on my current medication since. This was the medication I took when TTC and whilst pregnant. In an ideal world, I wouldn’t have taken anything during this time but I needed to be able to manage day to day life and it took much longer than we anticipated to conceive.

At the moment, my pain levels are high and I’m finding it tough. The next thing has gone wrong with my foot and the impact of that is that my whole body is starting to hurt. I’m going to go back to the pain clinic as I need to be better than this to care for my children. My orthopaedic consultant, who is wonderful, is doing his best for me but it all takes time. I know my next bout of surgery is looming on the horizon but I’m hoping I can put it off until the twins are old enough that I can manage them and be on crutches.

It would be great if the pain would just bugger off but as it isn’t, I’ll just take life one step at a time.

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