My Wonky Elbows!

The wonky shape of my elbows is caused by a high carrying angle, also known as cubitus valgus!

In T- minus 10 days I’m driving to Seattle to be evaluated by a SURGEON for my elbows- and I am SO NERVOUS! For years, doctors and physical therapists alike have been telling me that my wonky, bendy elbows were normal, and I wanted so badly to believe them. But, with the pain/numbness in my elbows making nearly everything I do challenging- something HAS to be wrong!

Currently, I am experiencing pain in BOTH of the nerves (the median and ulnar nerve) that feed through the arms and into your hands. This results in numbness, tingling, and weakness in my arms and hands whenever I drive, write, type, carry things, or even just stand with my arms rested at my side. I’m fairly certain my nerves are being pinched at my elbow, but without a doctor’s evaluation I can’t be certain.

Along with being a chronic illness WARRIOR, I am also a chronic WORRIER! As I have been preparing for this appointment, I have had so many what-ifs run through my head. What if he can’t help me? What if he doesn’t listen to me, or dismisses my problems? Or, if he CAN help me, how difficult will the recovery be and what will the surgery be like?

Ever since I first discovered that I had Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and even before I was diagnosed, I’ve basically been figuring out what was wrong with me BEFOREHAND, and then finding a doctor that I knew could treat the problem. I can’t even remember the last time that I sat down with a doctor and he told me something that I didn’t already know before arriving there. Usually I’M the one suggesting the treatment plans, not the other way around!

So I guess that’s part of why I’m so nervous about this appointment. I know that I have hyper-mobile elbows with a high carrying angle. I also know that this is a known cause of ulnar neuropathy, rare though it may be. But it it IS NOT a known cause of median nerve pain, so that can’t be the entire problem! I also have no idea what surgery would be required to correct these problems, and I’m struggling to find any information about it online. So I guess I will just have to wait in see. It’s comforting to know that I will be in the hands of an expert, but the 19th couldn’t come soon enough!

Are any of you guys chronic worriers? What do you do to relax when things are out of your control? Comment below and share your best tricks!

3 Comments

  1. The thing about worry is it doesn’t work. Worrying may make one think that something productive will result from all the energy worry takes – wrong. Or maybe one confuses worry with something else, like preparing, planning, gathering information, or problem solving – wrong again. None of us enjoy being wrong so we need to put worry where it belongs otherwise worry is pretty much a waste of time, energy, and of one’s life. Worry can alert us to what are concerns are and that is all it can really do. After worry has done its tiny job of alerting us to a concern then it is up to us to move from that alert on to something else. We can end the worry with “Been there done that, I can handle it.” or “What am I, a pre-verbal baby? All I need to do is say yes or no.” or even, “Not now, Worry, you’ve had your allotted daily five minutes.” Don’t fear worry, let it do it’s brief little job, and then let it rest – because it is a puny emotion and you are much much stronger.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wish I could edit a prior comment. Is that possible? I was worried that people who read this would see my spelling or grammatical errors and think unkind things about me. They might even make those error known so everyone else would think bad things about me. So instead of continuing down this path I let my worry, as petty as it might seem to others, guide me to recognizing a concern and then moving on to a solution. In this case a simple question about the possibility of being able to edit my first comment, followed by a very clever example of the use of my first comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Sharon, thank you for sharing, I really appreciate your insights and your example! I think that now that I have approved them that you will be able to edit the comments, but I’m not sure. Either way, I really appreciate your thoughts. I think what helped me so far was realizing that this doctor isn’t the end of the line for me: God is. And He will take care of me even if this appointment doesn’t work out! And it’s so true that wasting energy on worrying takes away from your ability to do so many better things.

    Like

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