I had a follow up appointment with my primary care physician yesterday. I got the results of my physical blood work, finally, and we talked about the hospitalization.
Cholesterol is down 30 points to a normal level. LDL is down, HDL is up. Blood pressure is looking great and I've taken my resting heartrate from borderline tachycardic to in the 70's.
The weight I gained after the surgeries and the inactivity really fucked with my health. Exercising somewhat regularly and watching what I eat is really paying off, and my doc says she's proud of me.
I saw the official reports from my inpatient stay. I DO have an ulcer, and apparently I was vomiting blood stained bile pretty regularly the first 24 hours I was there - that being the reason I was there for 4 days. I knew that the bile I was reguritating wasn't exactly a normal color and I thought that it tasted kind of metallic, but I really wasn't 'with it' enough to realize it was bloody. It wasn't frank blood, and for that I'm grateful, because I'd have freaked out over that. I've transported patients with gastric bleeds before. I know how you can bleed copious amounts from your gut. Anyhoo, the diagnosis is firm: I have a duodenal ulcer and I have to be on Nexium for the next 2 months in order to give it time to heal. I'm going to have another scope done sometime soon, and I'm going to have to avoid NSAIDs like the plague for the forseeable future. My belly isn't hurting as much as it was, and the doc gave me the green light to start running again next week.
Speaking of running, I'm going to buy new shoes this weekend. I have low arches and I overpronate pretty significantly, so I need stability or motion control shoes or else my calves and shins cramp up like a bitch. There's a store near here that's run by a guy in his 50's who runs marathons regularly (he ran the Boston, and that's a feat in an of itself. You have to qualify for that by running another marathon in under 3 1/2 hours) and really knows his stuff. I was in there with U a few weeks ago, and he said that when I'm ready to take the running to the next level to come back and see him and he'd fit me for some shoes. He knows his shit, and I trust him...so I'm going to see him on Saturday, hopefully, and have him fit me with some GOOD shoes. Yeah, they're gonna be about $100, but if they make my runs more comfortable and my legs less prone to injuries, they'll be worth it.
I have a new hero: Matt Long. Matt is a NYC firefighter who was crushed by a 20 ton bus whilst riding his bike on December 22nd, 2005. He had compound femur and tib/fib fractures on the left, and the bus forced the handlebars of his bike into his body, creating a fissure that went from his belly button to his rectum. His pelvis was shattered, he broke his shoulders and too many bones to count, his injuries were what the trauma surgeon described as 'worse than those of soldiers who have been hit by mortar rounsds', and he used 48 units of blood in the first 24 hours he was in the hospital. He underwent 22 surgeries and was an inpatient for 5 months. He nearly died, in other words.
He ran the NY marathon last year.
He hasn't let his injuries stop him. He's got numerous reasons to NOT run - hell, I see people with injuries far less than his who ride around on electric scooters - but he runs just the same. He is my inspiration: he pushes past his injuries and when he's down or in pain he says he just focuses on putting one foot in front of the other.
One foot in front of the other. That's all it is; it's just a question of putting one foot in front of the other. That's what I'm going to tell myself when I want to quit.
One foot in front of the other. It's really that simple.