Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Screams in the Night

“Learn to live with it.”

How many times have I heard that through the years? Too many to count.

And that’s virtually what the orthopedic surgeon said today that I would have to do. Unless I want him to practically make me two new feet, which would involve whacking several toes in two, removing the joints and inserting steel rods.

Did I actually hear him use such gross terms? Well, almost.

Anyway, I decided I’d bear with it awhile longer. At least I have medication right now that stops me from waking Ken -- and myself -- with screams of pain.

The first couple of times that happened, Ken shot straight up in bed. “What’s the matter? What’s the matter? What can I do?”

There was nothing either of us could do to stop the electric-shock feeling that shoots through my toes and causes me to wake us both with my screaming. So, I finally went to see my doctor about it.

I hate taking pain pills, and feel blessed that I have had to take so few these many years that I’ve lived with autoimmune diseases. Of course, I have plenty pills for other things. So many that I get embarrassed -- and broke -- having so many prescriptions filled. But when I mentioned this to my doctor, she said, “Well, they are all for things related to your lupus.”

So I swallow my pills, take my lung and eye treatments, pull on my shoes with custom-made insoles and thank God for giving humans the ability to develop treatments for all these ailments that befall us humans.

Take prednisone, for instance. I realize that it was God who saved my life during my severe illness when I was first diagnosed with lupus. But I feel that prednisone was one of the things He used to do it.

Now, if He would help these humans to stop charging so much for what He’s helped them develop, we would be able to buy our pills and groceries, too.


Mrs Quilty said...

Hello Shelba,
I became acquainted with you today by reading your article in the Light & Life Free Methodist Magazine. I too suffer from a chronic disease, COPD, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, which means emphasema and Chronic Bronchitis. I also have this week been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis. I have been on prednisone for a few years and was recently taken off. That's when my body began to ache, both muscles and joints, to a degree I ran to the doctor and was diagnosed with those two things. I am back on prednisone though a light dose and hopefully that'll help. Daily pain is so awful.

I am encouraged and inspired by your article to "look for the thrills instead of the hardships." I have a close relationship with my husband who daily helps me live with it, and my friends, who are ready and willing to help out.

Thank you so much for your words of wisdom and experience.

Barbara (

shelba Nivens said...

I hope you are doing better. Please keep in touch.