Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Truth on a Hamstring

I woke up yesterday morning with a strange sore place deep inside the place where my buttock and leg join. I'm not sure what to call it, or even where to call it because the discomfort was so hard to nail in one place. It felt weird, like a deep-set Charley horse had let go after a few hours.

Problem is, there was no charley horse to speak of. I just woke up with the weirdness. So last night, I went on to the track and did my do-over beginner's shuffle for a couple of low-impact breath training (very very slow jogging.).

I didn't hurt myself, and I made sure to stretch thoroughly and gently after each night's shuffled jog. Nothing was hurting after I ran.

Nothing.

Yesterday I woke up with a little soreness in my shins, but I'd expected that. My obliques were a little tender as well, because I was tightening my abs during my cool down walk.

And that weird pain in my butt. Lol. Somewhere deep inside at the top of my femur.

This morning that phantom cramp caused some internal numbness, however. Sometimes when I walked today, my whole leg folded under me. Walking became painful and difficult as well, because it seems that my entire hamstring from my pelvis to the back of my knee, is pulled too tight. It just isn't responding correctly when I try to make my leg pick up and move.

I don't know why. I didn't put any strain on it. I didn't feel a hint of a pull while I jogged so pathetically slowly.

More than once today I thought, great. You're going to end up losing your leg over this. Nightmares plagued me last night too. I could have attributed that to my very sad and lonely mood when I went to sleep (it still hasn't gone away), but my dreams took on an awful medical quality. I went to a doctor for something minor, and they held me there doing horrible tests until they told me I had some kind of cancer in my lower back that was causing all the problems with my leg.

For the record, I had nightmares as a child about suddenly losing my ability to walk, and I've never understood why. It blossomed into a phobia of elevators and of collapsing staircases before I realized it was an irrational dreamstate-only set of fears.

I'll admit that while awake, elevators still upset me, especially if they are small and rickety. I remember what happened in all *those* nightmares. I lugged some very heavy baggage up five floors in Florence rather than take a chance on the elevator. It made my breathing a little panicked just to consider it.

Obviously the useless legs dream scares me, but what a coincidence that I'm suddenly ... Having trouble walking.

So I've been trying to use tennis balls to get into the juncture where the problem is and my dog has taken up the challenge to steal all of those smelly new tennis balls from me. All tennis balls must belong to the dog. Check. I hope my physical therapy massage (I made a special appointment because I'm hoping it's just a cranky soft tissue thing) helps on Friday. If it doesn't, I guess I really will be going to a sports doctor and getting more x rays done of my legs. There wasn't a pretty picture last time, fifteen years ago.

Sometimes I think I'm making a futile attempt to stay ahead of the Grim Reaper. You know, the would-be heroine always stumbles when she might have otherwise gotten away from the killer. The runner always stumbles.

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