Yesterday, as I rushed to leave work to pick up my kids from school, a wave of numbness shot down my left side. Now, for the last month or two I’ve been having these weird bouts of numbness in my left arm, but this was different. It was if I had stuck a pin into a light socket. It was a wave, and for the first time in years and years, it was worrisome.
This went on for about 30-45 minutes. Every time I turned my head, the wave would shoot down my left side. Now, I’m the type to ignore illnesses, aches & pains – the men in my family have some kind of allergy to seeing a doctor. But this was alarming enough that I called Lintilla, who was sufficiently alarmed to call the doctor, who was sufficiently alarmed to tell me to go to the emergency room.
On Dancing With The Stars finale night, no less.
I can tell you, the staff at Centennial Medical Center was first rate. I was triaged right away, and before I knew it, I was in a room in the ER. They hooked me up to all the beepy stuff, and before long a very personable doctor came in and checked me out.
Folks – from that point on, it was like I was a teenager again. Even though I told them about the effects I’ve always lived with from being a DES baby, apparently seeing my spine is believing. They did the CT scan (which was COOL!), and later, the doctor came to talk to me in a tone I had heard 30 years earlier, the first time someone had looked at my spine.
Radiologists and doctors just get excited about my spine. I’ve come to accept that. I’ve heard the words “interesting”, “unusual”, “funny”, and now “weird” describing my neck and spine. The doctor last night said that the radiologist wrote a book in his report.
Apparently, I have a bunch of “C” and “T” vertebrae fused together. We don’t know about the “L” because they didn’t scan that far down. But apparently, this problem I’ve lived with my entire life has manifested itself in something called “stenosis” (sp?), basically a crowding out of the spinal cord. Yipee.
The doc did remind me what I already knew – because there is no wiggle room in my spine, a good neck whip will probably do me in. SO no skydiving, skiing, or horseback riding. There goes my career in NASCAR. I wonder if this means I can get out of roadie work for the band? 😉 I should probably take advantage.
I’ve always known that a good auto accident will probably kill me where it would only injure others, but the Lord has seen to it that I have been in not a single accident since I started driving (before many of you were born). I guess He wanted me to hang around to annoy all you good people. Having jinxed myself now, expect to be reading my obituary soon from a fender-bender on the way home. 🙂
Funny – this past Sunday, I got excited at rehearsal and started banging my head (I’ve also let my hair grow out). That PROBABLY contributed to my stenosis, so I need to quit doing that 😦
Of course, they referered me to a neurologist. Just like when I was a teenager. Been there, done that. They’ll tell me there’s nothing they can do, and I’ll just have to live with it. But not until after they’ve had a big medical staff party, popped popcorn, and gathered everyone around to look at my highly amusing CT scans.
It’s tough being a celebrity.
Anyway, I know some of you were worried (I made a point of calling my Mom, because the last time I posted something medical about myself on Facebook, she freaked out). I can say that nothing is wrong with me that wasn’t already wrong with me, except that the condition has now decided to be a real pain in the neck.