In recent months I have taken the time to be a little more vulnerable on here and talk about some things I have and do deal with in my life. In my summer video compilations, I talk a little bit about some foot issues I deal with. I have not gone very in depth though, and I do not intend to do so now. I may make an August differences post explaining more in depth what my feet conditions are and cover some research I have done on them myself. The conditions I have been diagnosed with are Osteoarthritis, Tarsal Coalition, and Congenital Talipes Calcaneovalgus. I have had all of these diagnosed to both of my feet; however, I don’t think the osteoarthritis is in my left foot yet, and the tarsal coalition has been “fixed” in my right foot already. I have now seen three different doctors who gave three opinions, all of which were mostly the same. This month, I saw a foot doctor here in Utah for a third opinion, and he informed my mother and I with some unfortunate news. We found out many things. One being, I have started to develop osteoarthritis in my right foot, and my joints in my right foot and ankle have begun to breakdown. In addition to this, my right foot has already had two surgeries conducted on it to try and help my foot. Both of which I did not have a positive outcome. Currently, the foot that the pain is most prevalent in is my right foot. The doctor recommended that when the pain gets bad enough, we have the hardware from my last foot surgery two years ago taken out. Over time my joints will continue to breakdown and as they do, we can fuse them, but there is only so much fusing of the joints you can do before you can’t anymore. With the Osteoarthritis he could give me medication, but does not feel comfortable doing so because 1) I am 21 years old and normally they would see this in an 80 year old, and 2) the medication he could give me over time your body builds an immunity to it and then you find yourself increasing the dosing. My left foot has begun to progress with its symptoms of the tarsal coalition and is progressing a little more quickly now that it is having to compensate for my right foot. The doctor said he would recommend we do what we have done to the right foot already and do it on the left foot. Eventually, the left foot then at some point will have to undergo the same things my right foot is currently and will go through. Due to the severity of my joints, and a few other things, there is a chance at some point down the line I could lose a very large amount of my mobility. When and if that day comes, I would be faced with making the decision of be mostly wheelchair bound or go the route of amputation and be fitted for prosthetics. Sounds pretty terrifying right?
Hearing something of this nature at age 21 is very difficult, especially when you already had your own hunch and fear of the possibility. I had voiced this hunch to some family, and we had not been told this by the other two doctors in Texas. So, to hear my fear actually be said out loud by a real doctor, really hit very hard. A couple days ago I was frustrated, and the frustration and emotions have been hitting in various waves. I have been very proud of myself for not overthinking it. The other day I was struggling with being frustrated about all of this and ended up having a long conversation with my mom that night. We talked through it all again. At some point, my mom said something along the lines of “We just have to be strong like we always have been and face each thing as it comes.” Upon hearing that, I knew she was right. But it also evoked me to say something I haven’t said out loud before. “I know I have to be brave and have to be strong, but when you have to be strong off and on for as long as I have, sometimes I wish I didn’t have to be strong anymore.” Typing this is making me cry, but this is real life. I know others out there have had similar thoughts to that. If you, the person reading this, have ever felt this way, please know it is ok. Please know you are not alone, and know that you, and we, will get through everything we set our mind to. We are not victims of what is happening to us. We are only victims to ourselves and how we ourselves approach unfortunate situations. It is terrifying some of the things we have to deal with, but at the end of the day where our mindset is at on how we will face what we are going through is what’s important. Please note that your mindset is different than your emotional feelings toward it. It is perfectly fine to feel angry and sad and scared. All of those feelings are valid. But when you have to approach your situation, and what you need to do to handle it and overcome it, we do have to be brave and keep going. If we don’t keep going and face it head on, we may never discover what we are meant to learn and grasp from the situation at hand. Plus, we may never know if what we deal with is supposed to help someone else, unless we face it with everything we’ve got. As I go through this journey, I will bring you with me. Just know that you are loved, and you can face these hard parts with bravery and positivity. Even when you think you can’t. It is okay to be scared. We shouldn’t place this feeling of shame around being afraid. Embrace your feelings and fear and then use them to help you overcome the situation at hand if you can. I love all of you very much! Even if I don’t know you. I will see you again soon!
(Stay tuned for August. I will give some more info on what my foot conditions are.)
The Inspiring Hummingbird!