I'm running a bit behind on my updates, this one really should have been at the end of November. This photo is of what my Mum called my "Dream Team" - taken when I saw Dr Kibler when he was at a conference in Philadelphia at the end of November. I was very lucky to have my surgeon, physio (Angelo, on the left) and Marty Kelly (on the right), the specialist physio I have been seeing at Penn (and the conference organiser). Two people missing from my photo are the shoulder therapist, Aaron from Kentucky, and our good friend Sami, the neurologist who really sent me in the right direction way back in January.
This is really likely to be the only time I ever have my "team" all in the same room, so I felt it was a necessary photo opportunity! I really feel I cannot thank these people enough for the treatment, support, skill, expertise and compassion they have all offered me this year.
Onto the actual appointment.... Dr K felt that it was the most improvement he had seen between appointments, which is a sign I am finally heading in the right direction, although he did say he was not pleased with where I am right now, but pleased that I have finally got there; and that hopefully now I can move forward.
The valium-assisted physiotherapy sessions seem to be helping so I have to continue those just now - and have been - and I will see Marty again at the beginning of January to see what the next step will be.
There was a lot of talk about how, with this injury, and especially when things get to this stage and take this long; it becomes as much of a mental challenge as a physical challenge. It comforts me to hear the health professionals say that, because it does make me feel better (kind of) about how I feel about it all.
I recently went back over some of the blog posts I had written earlier this year and remembered how I felt at those times. Looking at them now they seem so overly optimistic and naive, but no-one really knew how this was going to go. One of the key things I have said, and thought, all year is that once I can start really working on my exercises I will feel as if I am really helping myself and I am sure after that I will start to feel much better mentally and physically. I still feel that is true, but I am still waiting on it coming. At the moment, my focus is still on trying to move my shoulder as much as I can but without aggravating the pain. This is not easy, since any movement is painful, but I do now have some movement that is not such an angry pain, and that is the first step.
The real outcome of the appointment was that this is definitely a long, hard process and that there will still be many ups and downs and challenges, but that they are optimistic that I will get there.... one day...
I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day, a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning.
~ J. B. Priestly