So tomorrow, in the early afternoon, I go to the podiatrist to have foot surgery, again
. I have had big toenails removed twice at the health center, where I knew it would not be permanent (but it was free
), and then once, last summer, before Costa Rica and the utter implosion of my entire life, I had them both removed in what was supposed to be a permanent solution to an inherited problem. They removed both sides of each nail, leaving a narrow strip up the center, then killed both sides of the nail bed with a chemical called phenol. The podiatrist took of "extra" so that we could "eliminate" the chances of them coming back. They still grew back.
I have tried, with many people and on many occasions, to explain exactly what I go through with my feet. I am 28 years old, and I have had severe foot pain for the last 10 years of my life. It has prevented me from doing a great many things, from being more active in a general sense to walking places with my friends. I've endured hundreds of scornful looks from people I care about, because it's hard to believe that someone my age could be this infirm and immobile, and it's easier to just think me lazy.
It started out as just excruciating pain in the big toes, where the nail is ingrown. If you've never had one before, its kind of like having tiny knives on both sides of your toenail that slowly cut down into your skin. Every time you move, the knives move too, inflaming the skin around your toenails. They get infected very easily, and antibiotics only clear it up for a few days because, barring removal of the nail, the wound cannot heal. Slowly, the continual infection has led to a lot of generalized foot pain. As I sit on the couch at night watching TV, I will all of a sudden feel pain like someone stabbing a fork into the bottom of the ball of my feet, or the bottom of my feet burn a lot like I am walking across hot coals. I feared it was permanent, and I can't tell you in words what the dread of that felt like, the idea that I would never be able to go a day without this pain. Then I tried the antibiotics, and the pain cleared up a lot. That gave me the hope to go through with this again.
So tomorrow, in the early afternoon, I will have them cut out entirely, the whole nail, on both toes, and I don't care what the damn doctor has to do to the nail bed, but this needs to be the last time. I can't bear the thought of waking up one morning and finding them growing back again. I would probably lose my ever loving mind. So pray for me, if that is what you do, or at least will me the mental strength to deal with this again. The worst part is the injections into the toe. Once that part is over, the rest isn't so bad, it's the recovery that worries me.
Behind this like are pictures, but if reading this post has been uncomfortable, you should probably *not* look.pain
Labels: anxiety, life