My only miles this week were logged in my car, driving to and from chiropractor, physical therapist, and orthopedist appointments. Not the way I wanted to spend the week, but I am determined to try everything I can to straighten out this issue, so I had some sort of appointment every single day of the week.
The orthopedist took X-rays, and saw nothing in my back that concerned her - no disc issues - and concurred with the PT and Chiropractor's diagnosis of SI joint dysfunction/inflammation.
That was the good news, I suppose. But to say that the week was an emotional roller coaster is an understatement.
Monday and Tuesday I was still in quite a bit of pain, and Tuesday night was very much a low point. I was sure that recovery from this injury was a long way off, and that Boston was out of the question.
Then Wednesday I woke up feeling significantly better. Not perfect, but a huge improvement from how I had felt the night before. But by the end of the day, the pain had started to ramp up again, and I started to feel discouraged again.
At my PT appointment Thursday, I was buckled into a traction device that looks pretty intimidating, but was actually not the least bit uncomfortable.
The effect wasn't noticeable immediately, but Thursday afternoon I felt better than I had all week. I was sure that I was finally on my way to healing, and considered trying a short test run Friday morning.
I'm glad I didn't, though, because by Friday night I was limping again, and Saturday was the same.
And that was when my optimism ran out, and when the ups and downs of the week finally came crashing down in one giant swath of negativity that I couldn't fight my way out of - and, frankly, didn't want to.
I wrote this post back in February, about choosing the word "embrace" as a sort of intention for this year, and as I went through the day in something of a zombie-like state yesterday, that word came back to me.
I know full well that my problems pale in comparison to the far more serious problems that so many people in the world face on a day-to-day basis, and I remind myself constantly to keep it all in perspective, because perspective is so incredibly important.
But at the same time, I think sometimes it's ok to feel sorry for yourself, and to wallow, and to cry, and to be angry. My problems are nothing in the grand scheme of things, but in my world, they're very real, and I can't pretend that they're not.
As I went to bed, feeling completely spent emotionally and physically, I knew that I would wake up feeling better, because I had let myself embrace all those awful feelings, and had gotten it out of my system.
And it helped tremendously that in response to me unloading my sense of absolute despair on Facebook, I received a ton of incredibly supportive, kind, and encouraging messages from family and friends far and near, including this post on the Another Mother Runner page.
Social media has its drawbacks (and I'm sure there are plenty of people who think that my oversharing about my running and injuries and everything associated with those things are one of the drawbacks), but it can do so much good, too. I went to bed feeling sad and hopeless last night, but I also went to bed feeling so much support and love, and I'm going to let that be the feeling that carries me through this week.
The Boston Marathon is filled with real live people on the sidelines cheering you on every step of the way, but if I am fortunate enough to be there running it this year, I'm also going to have this incredible virtual community of people who have cheered me on through this training, and through so many other training cycles and so many other races, and through life in general.
That is still an 'if' scenario, though.
In addition to my improved mood today, I am feeling better physically, and walking almost normally, with very little pain. And I'd be celebrating that, but I also felt that way Thursday afternoon, only to have the pain return the next day.
This injury is far from a straightforward one, and I'm not going to jump to any conclusions at all. I'm also going to hold off a little longer before I try to run. I'm not happy about not running, but I'll be far less happy if I try to run too soon and end up hurting myself.
So the plan for this week is more PT and chiropractor appointments, and hopefully acupuncture, as well. I need to keep giving this everything I've got before I make a call on whether or not to race. And when I do make that call, it will be in close consultation with those who are treating me. Because as much as I want to get out there and race on April 18, I don't want to do so if it's going to result in me re-injuring myself.
I don't have to just be healthy enough to get to the starting line on April 18 - I have to be healthy enough to make it the 26.2 miles to the finish line.
Two weeks to go. Here's hoping that next week I can occupy my time with something more fun, like race-day weather-stalking.