I saw the specialist today. A Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R) practitioner.
I haven’t seen any specialist about my Cerebral Palsy since I was eighteen.
He told me that the over fifty years of walking the way I do, well, it has taken its toll on my leg joints (it has caught up to me at fifty-five years of age).
He did what I remember my old doctor doing: checked my mobility in my legs, but he also checked my arms, neck, head, and back movement, strength and flexibility. Wouldn’t you know it, today I seemed to have quite a bit less spasticity in my legs (I was having a good day).
I had tried wearing a brace these last two weeks, but it was changing the way I normally walk, and as a result, it resulted in an acute pain to appear in my left hip (for those who do not know, my right leg is more affected by the spasticity than my left leg).
So, now it is goodbye brace and hello crutches: I must get and use crutches now to help prevent myself from falling when I walk. I will do it because I must, but I am not looking forward to it.
I will admit that some of this is due to pride. I have managed to function independently for quite some time without requiring much assistance. Another, and probably related reason, is that it seems a sort of weakness on my part — somewhat appear more “dis abled” (sic) than I already am. This is silly, I know, but I just cannot help, but feel it’s so.
I will do as I am told because I know that it is the right and the sensible thing to do.
I know I seem to have been whining about all my leg stuff lately. I do not mean to, but I am just trying to put it out there for others to know what it is I am struggling with and to express how I feel. Those who know me, know that I am not much of a complainer — I just grin and bear it. I believe those who suffer with Cerebral Palsy, or any chronic condition, are much the same.
I put a post on Facebook, more to let others know, but it felt like I was looking for sympathy; that is the problem with social media, it cannot always convey sentiment (the same for texting), but I digress. I took the posting down as I hate having to ask for help, or to appear weak, or to appear that I am seeking pity. I guess my pride won’t let me.
I am still wanting to be independent, but I am starting (albeit ever slowly) to learn that it is okay to ask for help once in awhile.
— Robert Confiant 29 April 2017