Sunday, July 27, 2008

I think I smiled for two hours straight

And what a fabulous way to end a mixed-bag weekend! Mama Mia was soooo much fun! My cheeks and my jaw are actually a little tired from all the grinning and laughing I did watching that flick. Meryl Streep was absolutely amazing, by the way. Who knew that woman could sing and dance like that? And despite all the campy shenanigans, she still managed to turn-out a Meryl-quality acting performance. Same can't be said of wooden Mr. Brosnan. Undoubtedly the worst singer of the bunch, still sporting that awful George Hamilton tan, and no better an actor than he was in the other 5 movies he's ever been in. Sadly, Colin Firth was relegated to second-fiddle, when his voice, handsomeness, and acting is undoubtedly better.

This capped off an otherwise groansome weekend,: my cell phone fell on the floor, leaving the screen inoperable, and a friend (unbeknown to both of us) left my house on Friday evening with my house and car keys in her bag, resulting in hours of turning the house upside down to find them, and generally being "stranded" at home for most of Saturday. Outside of this, I also completed the very glamorous tasks of shampooing the family room carpet and scrubbing every surface in our three bathrooms. On the plus side, I'm not grossed-out every time I need to pee now.

Positive observations also on the weird "sore spot" on my thigh. My Physical Therapist decided to go to town on my leg with a deep tissue massage last week. For several week's we've tried massage on a foam roller, icing it down, and heat-and-ice treatments. As you know from my posts, none of these has produced a signficant difference. Finally, last week he decided that the only thing left was (a) to push through the pain and see if a major massage would do 'something' and (b) switch to heat therapy only. The massage was excrutiating. Imagine the worst bruise you've ever had on soft tissue, now imagine a Swedish masseuse called Helga pummeling it with her thick hands for fifteen, unrelenting minutes. Ok, so my PT is a good-looking man called Eric, but telling you that softens the experience and I have to get through to you just how much it hurt!

Despite the pain, I do remember saying that the soreness seemed to shift. Its difficult to explain but the pain couldn't be replicated elsewhere in my leg before, but during the massage I started to feel it behind my leg, closer to my hamstring and the area of pain seemed to grow. Since then I've been doing the heat and yesterday I realized, while rubbing myself in with moisturizer, that the tenderness is significantly less. It's not gone completely, but now I can actually apply a decent amount of pressure before I start to feel it and the overall sensation of pain has lessened. The general, surface-level feeling of numbness has also subsided and my skin in that area feels almost exactly the same as elsewhere on my leg.

I'm not sure if this one episode did it alone or whether it was this, coupled with the fact that I have been increasingly my leg workouts and have actually started running on a treadmill again (not much, just 2-3 mins at a time). Previously I couldn't have run at all because the soreness on my soft tissue was too much but I found that the more often I did it, the less it hurt the next time.

The other good news on the hip/leg front is that I have been able to 'get to' the hip flexors that have been holding the majority of my tension and pain around my joint. Twice daily long stretches of 5-15 minutes each, one in the evening using Hubby to apply pressure, have definitely broken that muscle pattern. I still have some piriformis issues which occasionally cause my sciatic nerve to "ping" in my butt but otherwise my hip and its surrounding ligaments,tendons, and muschles, feels a good 85% of normal.

So, this is all good news.

Despite that, I think I am going to change my medical group. Prior to switching to my current physician, I was a part of Hill Physicians through my previous primary care doctor. Although I wasn't overawed with him, I did have good experiences with the quality and varity of referrals this group was able to offer me, as well as the variety of options for urgent care. When I switched to my new doctor, I automatically had to change to Mercy Medical Group and I have not been impressed with the cattle-market mentality of this group. It's very Kaiser-like, with limited referral options and cookie-cutter services. So, while I'll be sad to lose one of the best PCPs I've ever had, the reality is that you really spend the majority of your time with specialists in an HMO system and your PCP is really just the conduit to those services. Colds, flus, infections, and general medical issues can pretty much be treated by any PCP, all that really varies is bedside manner. I'm asking friends and neighbors for recommendations and hope to see if some local doctors will provide an "interview" appointment.

Any suggestions on researching doctors greatly appreciated.

God... its basically Monday again.


Julianne said...

I am thrilled with the comments on your hip, the spot on your leg, and on the stretching. I rejoice with you -- this is wonderful!!!

Mala said...

I agree - I didn't stop smiling the whole time. It was great to see you. Awfully sorry I was late. Looking forward to the Abba party.

Good news on the hip.

e said...

Yay on the hip front, this is indeed excellent news, I'm very glad to hear it.

As for Mamma Mia: I LOVED IT!! It was 2 hours of joy and fun, and not only smiled the entire time, I cried I was so happy. Is that weird?

Urban Koda said...

Glad to hear your hips seems to be improving - hopefully that continues...

Best advise I've ever been given on doctors is: Find one about your same age, same gender and ethnicity. The idea being that the problems most likely to face you are the ones they're most concerned about too.

I lucked out with mine, the only thing he lacks is that he isn't a phsychotic exerciser - but I just recently found a sprt medicine do who is!

Best of luck...

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