This is the first post of many in my WTWCTD series. I am hoping to chronicle my struggle with my health and how I’m attempting to push through.
Before I entered into full time ministry I did a lot of time working retail. I worked in everything from grocery stores, book stores, music stores, to movie theaters. One thing I often noticed from time to time was that my feet would hurt a lot. I figured it was bad shoes and being on hard floors for hours upon hours. I tried everything but the pain stayed. I never mentioned it to anyone simply because I assumed they had foot pain as well.
Fast forward to my first church in Virginia. I was summertime and we had just wrapped up Vacation Bible School and I was helping clean up the craft room. As I was leaving I hopped on a step and felt a very sharp pain. I sat on the step and took off my show to massage my now screaming foot. I was scared I had fractured it, but the pain subsided and I went home.
When my wife came home I told her what happened and she told me to got to he dr. I wasn’t in the mood to go to the ER so I went to a clinic near my house that actually did X-rays. The doctor took X-rays and when they got the results told me I needed to go to a specialist. I became concerned and asked what was wrong. The doctor told me he saw some things he wasn’t happy with and I needed to stay off the foot and get a referral to a podiatrist.
So I did.
It didn’t take to long to get a referral to one of the top podiatrist in Roanoke so my wife and I went to the first appointment together knowing they he would have seen the X-rays. As I sit in the office I small man and his student come in. I notice that the Dr looks exactly like Nascar Champion Jeff Gordon. Dr Gordon, as I’ll call him, told me to take my shoes off and walk for him. I did and he asked me to roll up my pant legs he wasted to see my calf muscles. When He saw them he asked me to sit down.
He pointed at my feet and asked me how often that hurt. I told him often and he said you see that your feet are rolling in. I told him yes, but I never really paid attention to them. Her said well your lower legs are shaped like upside down coke bottles. I looked down and sure enough they did.
Again I really never paid attention to these things.
Dr. Gordon told me he thinks I have Charcot Marie Tooth. Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) is a degenerative nerve disease that usually appears in adolescence or early adulthood.Muscle weakness, decreased muscle size, decreased sensation, hammertoes, and high arches are symptoms. Needless to say all of this made sense and to be honest it scared me a bit.
I was then sent to other specialists and it was confirmed that I did in fact have CMT. I went back to Dr. Gordon for a follow up and we discussed the options. He mentioned that my left foot was worse than the right and at this point surgery would be an option. What he would do is basically rebuild the foot with hopes that it would buy me some time.
Time? I remember asking. He said yes I want to keep you out of the wheel chair as long as we can.
So the first surgery was schedules.
to be continued.