The problem with
optimism is that it gets you all optimistic.
And then you do something you have no business doing. Last week, my knee (yeah,
that knee) seemed to be gradually improving, so on Friday I figured it would be
OK to grab my umbrella and hoof it the short mile in the rain to work. I
probably could’ve climbed on my bike, but why not test the knee out and see if
my optimism was warranted?
By the time I
got to the end of the block, it was already barking at me and demonstrating with
each excruciating step the difference between wandering around the house and
trekking a mile on an unforgiving sidewalk. I tried shorter strides, longer
strides, a little pitiful shuffling, then finally settled into a sort of
Bataan Death Limp that got me over the bridge and up the hill to the office.
accustomed to hearing about the damage their knees can suffer from the constant
pounding on the pavement, but I’ve never heard the same said of walkers or bicyclists
or guys who are just standing around. After Friday’s little adventure — yeah, I
hobbled back home after work, too — I spent the weekend trying to undo the
damage by bicycling several miles and generally flexing the recalcitrant joint whenever
I found myself standing still. It doesn’t seem to be helping very much.
I know this
doesn’t make for scintillating reading; though it should prepare all my younger
readers for the stark realities of late middle age, when conversations
routinely seem to tilt toward pharmaceutical discoveries and
diplomatic descriptions of recent digestive functionality. That, at least, is
something of a public service. Besides, blogs are by nature confessional, and I
have to confess that this whole knee thing has now moved beyond the interesting phase.
this sort of thing has cropped up in the past, I would simply back off on the
activity in question and it would heal up in due time. I waited out a nasty
rotator cuff injury that way several years ago. Couldn’t throw a pillow across
the room. Stopped trying to throw stuff for a while. Cleared up. Can now throw
lots of things across a room. When the bursitis in my knee first flared up a couple
of years ago, I stopped running and it cleared up.
So, I’m embracing a little pessimism. I’ve told my
tennis buddies that I’m out for the rest of the season, with an eye toward
getting back on the court next spring. That should give me enough time to rehab
this thing. Back to Dr. Needle on Thursday for more magical therapy. And no
more walking to work for the time being. Any other ideas out there — short of knee replacement? I’m all ears . . . though you should know that I’m a bit hard of hearing.