My Left Foot: By Rebecca Fordyce 2013
My Left Foot has a mind of its own. For some time now it has been turning under. Some days it’s more pronounced than others. Some days it will stay flat. Some days it moves through phases of distortion like a plant following the sun. Everyday there is pain.
They took pictures of my Foot to see what they could see, and all that they could see, yes all that they could see was… bones, mountains and rivers.
They could not figure out why this left distal leg extremity was being so shifty. They gave me a brace with six straps that doesn’t fit in shoes to bring it into line. But my foot didn’t care; it wanted to have its way. The only way the brace could hold my Foot still was if I strapped it so tight there was no blood in it. This did not seem kind.
They sent me to a Neurologist to see if it was my Foot’s nerves that were animating it thus.
The Neurologist asked my Foot to do many things. My Foot was a stubborn circus pony; it would only do a few things. Then the Neurologist asked my foot again, this time encouraging it with gentle hands. It seems my Foot will move when handled by a professional.
The Neurologist asked me questions about my ‘tremors’. I told him how occasionally other parts of my body have minds of their own too. It can happen any time. When I’m sitting or walking, thinking or laughing, awake and maybe even sleeping?
Sometimes my mouth will not move, sometimes my eyelids flicker, sometimes my hands turn into claws, sometimes I have tyrannosaurus arms, sometimes my legs dance, sometimes my shoulders popup, sometimes my head jerks down to the left, sometimes I look possessed, always there is pain.
He said “This is Dystonia”.
My Foot and Leg contorted their agreement below my skirt.
I sighed and nodded.
He said “We can inject you with Botox which will help straighten out your foot. This is a very effective treatment but it can take up to three times to find the right spot. It is a great treatment because if it doesn’t work it wears off relatively quickly and if it works then we can give you an injection every 3 months to help your foot without the side effects you can get from medications”
My Left Foot liked the idea of joining ‘the beautiful people’ and wondered if it would be invited to walk a red carpet.
My Adipose screamed, “We will have none of that! This is a needle free zone as stated under the 2009 Treaty of Adiposes Dolorosa: Dercum’s Disease”
And so, I had to explain to the Neurologist about my Dercum’s Disease. “Just giving blood for a blood test means a new tumor. I’m not sure what would happen if we inject something into my muscle?”
The Neurologist looked concerned and said “Well, then we should try you on a medication first”
And so I returned to my home (Left Foot in tow) with a shiny new bottle of pills.
I had one dose…
and then another…
and another, at the prescribed times
‘as directed by my doctor'.
My Chest said, “umm excuse me, it’s hard to breathe”
My Body said, “ Spas-MMM, SPAS-m, SPASM!”
My Foot said, “what’s going on?”
My Mind said, “I have talked to the committee and the general consensus is you are reacting to this medication”
I said, “Sigh”
My GP said, “That is unusual, maybe give it a rest for two weeks and try it again”
I said, “Okay”
My Mind said, “Let's look up the side effects”
I said, “Okay”
The Internet said, “YES! And by the way there is an increased risk of ovarian cysts”
My Ovaries said, “ Fuck Off! We are not having that drug again. We are already dealing with all we can handle with this endometriosis bullshit that (thanks to Adipose) we can do nothing about”
I said, “OKAY! Okay... okay”
My Left Foot said, “See, I knew I would get my way”
I said, “Let’s make a deal. I will promise to rest more, stretch more, hold you gently each night as I cover you lovingly in moisturising lotions and paint your toe nails pretty colours so you can feel glamours if you agree to help me walk for the rest of my life.”
My Foot said, “It’s a deal”
And yet …
there is pain.
Love B xox