Those are some of my favorite song lyrics. And rarely do I have the pleasure of infusing a Fiona Apple song into my blog and it actually being somewhat contextually appropriate. It should make more sense later. The last time I blogged, I was quite pithy. Pissy is actually more like it. I ran, it hurt=things didn't go my way=meltdown.
I was very disappointed that my run was so painful on Thursday. It was not that I questioned Dr. Kaeser or my diagnoses, but I am just SO ready for this to be over. I want the pain GONE. I didn't get instant gratification and I did, indeed, melt down. I'm better now. I emailed Dr. Kaeser after my run, as I was supposed to. I tried not to be too dramatic (if he read my blog post, though, I'm sure he figured out my email was a bit muted), but explained to him what happened. He got back to me very quickly (he must know of my instant gratification/control complex). He explained that we can in no way expect this beast (well, that's my word) to go away in just two treatments.
He asked that I continue running so that we can gauge symptoms. I also need to keep doing my core exercises and working on my abdomen myself. I'm not sure if I mentioned it, but he basically gave me the freedom to massage/push/prod all over the sore spots on my abdomen. I have found that using a wooden spoon is most effective. He also thought I should plan another visit to Chicago, as well as contact a chiropractor in Bloomington. I had been given some criteria by which to select a chiropractor. 1. Much experience dealing with athletes; 2. Much experience in general; 3. Primarily uses his/her hands for treatments, and not machines.
I know of one sports medicine-focused chiropractor in Bloomington--Dr. Murer. He actually runs a practice that is specifically geared toward caring for athletes, and he practices Active Release Therapy (ART). I've seen him for a lot of other stuff. I actually called him well before I even saw Dr. Kaeser. I made an appointment, but his secretary called me back a few hours later to let me know that Dr. Murer thought I needed to be evaluated by a surgeon for a sports hernia. I explained that my symptoms were not lower abdominal pain (a sports hernia is characterized by persistent groin pain--I know all about it because at one time I thought I did have one), but upper, including back, shoulders, etc. He still thought I should be evaluated for a sports hernia instead of seeing him. I can tell you that one thing I do not have is a sports hernia. And I don't want one, but seeing a surgeon for one is not going to help me one bit. I was a little bummed Dr. Murer didn't want to see me for this. But I'm not going to beg.
So I've been searching for someone else. Polling people on Facebook. Facebook is such a wonderful tool. If you have good friends, that is. And I happen to. I even have people looking for good chiropractors for me. So I found one practice in Bloomington called the Bloomington Chiropractic Center. Two chiros work there, and they are focused on athletes. Check one thing off the list. The main chiro is Dr. Houze, and he's been in practice since 1978. Check another thing off the list. I read their techniques, and it seems to me that they use their hands. So I'm going to go for it and check that off the list, too. I found their email on their site, and sent a long, drawn out message about my problem, would they want to see me, could they help me, etc. The email didn't work. It bounced back. Imagine the rage that provoked (I was sending it on Thursday--Thursday was a BAD day). I called them this morning and found out that they just got a new email address and hadn't posted it yet. I also found out I can get a free, 15 minute consultation with Dr. Houze. I scheduled one for next Wednesday. Dr. Kaeser and I have decided that I need to go and get a feel for the chiropractor and his practice. I think I'll know if I'm dealing with someone who can help me. Against my will, I've learned all the chiropractic lingo. I know what the real deal is. So I'll put my feelers out. If I don't get a good vibe, I'll keep looking. Regardless of my experience down here, I'll be heading back to Chicago over spring break to see Dr. Kaeser again.
Now, back to the blog title. In my email to Dr. Kaeser, I asked him a question that I've had for a while now. I seem to have two different types of pain. There is the dull/aching pain I constantly have in my right side and back. Then there is the sharp/stabbing/knife-like pain I have in my abdomen and shoulders while I run. Why are the pains so different? It does not feel as though the achiness that I have all the time turns into the sharp pain. They are two distinct experiences. He told me that the achiness is likely caused by adhesions, and the stabbing pain is caused by trigger points. Something I failed to mention in my earlier blog post is that one of my official diagnoses is myofascial pain syndrome of the abdomen. I know it sounds fake, but it's a real diagnosis. It occurs when trigger points, which are basically bundles of muscle tissue/nerves, go haywire. When activated, these trigger points cause immense pain. It is usually described as knife-like and often happens symmetrically. Of course, given my luck, and in particular my luck with running, my trigger points are activated by running. Yeah, thanks--appreciate that one. They weren't always, of course. But carrying Rowan (and being VERY active while doing so) has disturbed them. Now they don't like the jarring/impact I put them through, and those little mini beasts can just about bring me to my knees.
I am supposed to dig on the trigger points all the time. It hurts. When I have Tim do it, though, it hurts INSANELY. The pain refers to my legs, my back....everywhere. He can feel the tight knots. We have not yet been able to release them, but we'll keep working on it. We've tried the wooden spoon. The wrench may be next.