The Shoulder Saga

Sometimes life keeps throwing curved balls at me and I find myself getting weary of yet another setback. After two spine surgeries with long waits beforehand I am now waiting for shoulder replacement surgery after a fall last March.

In November I saw the shoulder surgeon and he told me that the surgery would be in January or February. On January fifthI called his office about my surgery date only to be told that it would be in 2016! That was like getting kicked in the teeth as it is almost one year since my accident. Now it seems I am looking at another year or more! I am shattered.

The day after my phone call I was seeing myGP doctor about another matter and told her about this new development. She too was shocked and said she would write the surgeon to see what was happening; considering my injury was classed as urgent by the orthopaedic surgeon in Banff.

She did send the shoulder surgeon a note and I found out three weeks later that he wasn’t given it to read, as the clerk probably didn’t see my doctor’s note at the bottom of the form! Once again a note has been sent to the shoulder surgeon.

At this time my doctor’s nurse took my blood pressure and discovered it was really high. She tried three times leaving me to rest between the times and it was still very high. At the doctor’s suggestion a few days later I went to my pharmacy and had my blood pressure taken and it was even higher! I have never, in my whole life, had high blood pressure, however, the pharmacist said that pain could cause blood pressure to rise. Well, I have lots of that.

Since I am not knowledgeable on health issues, I checked the net about blood pressure and was startled that my reading is in the danger zone almost where I should be rushing to the emergency department of the hospital. These curved balls are starting to get to me.

One day in trying to get to sleep I read a chapter of Joni Eareckson Tada’s book Secret Strength I felt challenged to put this whole shoulder surgery business into God’s hands. If he really is the creator of the universe then he is capable of getting my shoulder fixed. I am learning to pray Joni’s prayer: “Sovereign Lord do whatever you like. You are in control. Grant me the courage to bear up…..” I am challenged to not look at the whole of the 2016 time line but to only live at one day at a time.

Joni, who is a quadriplegic, has found that looking at twenty years or more in a wheel chair is too overwhelming, so she has learned to live one day at a time. She is an inspiration to me. I have also taken Joni’s example and realize that I am responsible for my response to any delayed surgery. Another reason to take one day at a time.

A few days later I was reading an article by Max Lucado on prayer and am reminded of the scripture in Philippians 4:6 “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.” I immediately sensed God saying he has a plan.

It is always hard for me to be patient when living with pain, so this is a real challenge.

I have just read the foregoing and it is time to add an update and put this in my blog.

February 9 I visited by GP doctor about this blood pressure problem and she relieved my anxiety about how high it is. She didn’t class it as high and said the net scared me unnecessarily. The good news is she heard from the shoulder surgeon this morning and he said they are working on scheduling the surgical patients as there is a backlog of them. It now looks like a 6 to 8 month waiting period. Although that is some time away, it still is a heck of a lot better than 2016.

In the meantime I am carrying on with short snow shoe and hiking trips on Thursdays with my hiking group. I am very grateful to them as someone has to help me put on my winter fleece and anorak and also tighten the back strap of my snow shoes. They are all a treasure.

Here is a photo of Marble Canyon’s ice climber from last week’s trip and the bridge over the Vermillion River on the trail to the Paint Pots of the same day.

New News:

On February 17th I received a phone call from my shoulder surgeon’s office and was offered a surgery date of March 23. Needless to say, I am thrilled that I am being looked after so soon in comparison to what was previously expected. Obviously it pays to have my GP doctors making inquiries and it also pays to have my brother Neil and his wife Lillianne in Ottawa praying twice a day for this very thing (that I would soon receive a phone call with a surgery date).

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