I've never been a fan of doctors. I'm much more used to playing through pain. If four years of perfect attendance in high school (what.a.dork) taught me anything, it's that there is never a legit reason to stay home. Fever? No problem. Incapacitated by allergies? Nbd.
The only problem with this mindset is that it's REALLY FREAKING UNHEALTHY. And unkind. We get sick because the body is like, "I know you'd rather be doing 85 things right now but YOU MUST CHIIL!!!!" So in the spirit of being more attentive to my body, I actually went to the doctor about a month ago when my foot started hurting out of the blue (possibly because some Sasquatch on the bus stepped on it). But even as I was on the examining table waiting for my doctor, my mind was screaming helpful things like, "You're insane. Your foot is fine, suck it up, she's gonna think you're nuts." I think I saw my doctor for about three minutes, in which time she pronounced my foot swollen (even though it looked fine to me) and sent me across the hall to a podiatrist. An hour later, I emerged in a soft cast with possibly the beginnings of a stress fracture, although nothing had shown up on the x-ray. Huh. When I informed my boyfriend that my foot pain was actually something sorta serious, I said, "Who knew?" "YOU did," he replied. Oh. That.
I was ok with my soft cast for the prescribed week. My foot felt fine after the doctor took off the cast, so I was patting myself on the back for a job well done. Way to take care of yourself, girl.
But sticking with healthy decisions isn't easy. The universe will conspire to throw every sink in every kitchen in your neighborhood in your way. Sure enough, within two days of cast-removal, my foot was hurting again. I didn't want to be an alarmist, but my foot clearly wasn't better, so after a few days of hemming and hawing, I moved up my follow-up. This led to an MRI and its charming machine gun sounds, hyperventilation over a potential IV and blood work, and a dose of Ativan that helpfully kicked in three hours after said MRI and left me deliriously bumping into walls.
Oh yeah, and my foot still hurt, and I was pretty much handing my paycheck over to doctors and techs. Once my bum Ativan trip ended, I remembered very clearly why I usually avoid getting involved with doctors.
My MRI was on a Friday night. First thing Monday morning, my doctor called, wanting me to come in that day. I've never had a doctor call right after a test (prob because I never get tests) and I handled it well:
"Am I dying?!?!"
"What? No, but we found out why your foot's been hurting... it's broken!"
Apparently, stress fractures usually only show on MRIs, and the area of my foot that hurt perfectly corresponded to a white area of inflammation and a tiny crack on the MRI.
So now I'm thudding around in a walking boot for at least a month. I'm supposed to be "taking it easy" (barf) but relaxing makes me anxious, so that has been a struggle. At least I'm trying to listen to my body and apparently, it needs some rest. Now, I guess I can pat myself on the back for not ignoring pain. Yay, health!