I Think I Can? – Wise Words Wednesday
Today is August 10th. May 28th I injured my shoulder in a spectacular feet of parenting. I lifted my 3 year-old up to dunk on a 7 foot rim (like the big boys) and felt something pop in my shoulder. Again that was May 28th and today is August 10th.
By June 28th I decided my shoulder hurt enough to actually call a doctor. I had continued to tell myself, “I can get past this stupid shoulder pain. I think I can. I think I can. I think I can.” Well the pain had started waking me up at night and was shooting to my finger tips occasionally. Again, I thought, “I think I can work through this. I think I can tough it out. I think I can.” When I did see a doctor on June 30th, she lectured me on the importance of taking care of myself, gave me a cortisone shot, and directions to take it easy on my shoulder for a week or so. Again, “I think I can keep being super mom. I think I can keep farming. I think I can just rest my shoulder in the evenings.”
Two days after I received the cortisone shot my arm hurt so badly I didn’t even want to drive. I iced it and took ibuprofen. Again, “I think I am tough enough to keep going. I think I can. I think I can?”
The pain did seem to diminish after a few days of reduced activity but, hey, life is busy and I thought I could just keep going. Pushing forward with daily activities I only stopped for surging pains and burning shocks in my shoulder. I think I can?
On July 10th I finally decided I should call the doctor back for a follow-up. Of course it would be a week before they could see me again and I already had stuff I thought I had to do during their first available appointment. I saw the good doctor again on August 2nd and she told me that an MRI was necessary and then we could talk about my options.
The MRI required me to have a driver. Really??? I thought I could drive myself after a simple MRI. I thought wrong.
They would not schedule me until I could assure them I would have a driver and would not even do the test if my driver was not with me. I really think I can do this by myself. (Wrong!)
Thank goodness my best friend said she would drive me, because after the tubular torture of the MRI and the nausea that ensued after the dye injection, I was definitely not thinking about driving.
The MRI showed two small tears in my shoulder. (I think I may have needed to get help sooner.) The immediate solution offered by the orthopedic doctor was surgery, but of course I didn’t think that was necessary. So we decided to give therapy a try. I think I can just treat this shoulder with some stretches and it will be good to go. I think I can!
Yesterday I met with a wonderful physical therapist. She asked me some wonderfully insightful questions and measured my mobility and pain levels with the movement. “I think I can. I think I can. I think I can get through this evaluation,” was all I could say in my mind. The therapist gave a weary look and said, “Your shoulder has hurt how long? Your pain is this bad? You don’t think you need surgery?”
I smiled sheepishly and shared my belief that I am a cowgirl and can get through any pain.
She informed me even cowgirls need their shoulders and biceps to work so therapy may not be the fix for my shoulder problems, but we would give it a try. I think I can?
So here is sit trying to type with ice on my shoulder and the firm belief that I think I can get through my shoulder injury and greater understanding that my thoughts really should have been, “I think I am smart enough to seek medical attention.” Or “I think I can fix this with a real doctor’s opinion.”
A lot of people out there are too proud to ask for help when they need it. They think they are weak, if they seek assistance when a problem arises.
Here is the lesson of today’s post: Always know that you can ask for help or support.
Pain is not something that you have to bear alone. Injuries, physical or emotional, need to be treated so that life can move forward in a positive and productive manner. Therapies exist so that we can heal and become stronger. Speaking from painful experience, I want to encourage others to go the doctor, seek a counselor, or talk to a loved one if you are in need of healing.
Put your intent into knowing you can get better. Use your energy to produce positive motivation. You can do it. I know you can!
By: Melanie A. Peters