Everyone Take a Big Deep Breath

January 30, 2007 | Karin's Blog | 17 comments

I know this contest is a bit nerve wracking, but the rules are simple. Original lines posted must stay that way as you move up in the rounds. One new line per round. If it’s a dialogue sentence, you can have a dialogue tag after it, be sure to put the dialogue part in quotes. Post your subsequent line by midnight Friday. I try to keep a sharp eye on the lines as they come in and to let anyone know if they made a mistake and need to repost, but I miss things. There are a couple of hawk eyes out there who have brought discrepancies to my attention.
Anyhoo, relax and try to enjoy yourself. 🙂

So, yesterday I went to the doctor for my hand. I have arthritis in my right thumb. I’m right handed. My boys are to blame. For years, after football games or practice I rubbed them down. It was an assembly line of backs, calves and thighs. The constant rotating motion of my right hand and thumb wore down the cartilage between the last joint of my thumb. A few years ago I had an x-ray, and it was about 50% worn away. I got a cortisone shot into the joint, nearly passed out from the pain of the thick cortisone hitting my inflamed joint and then cried all the way home holding my hand up in the air like a big baby. So the hand has been bad for a while, but flared up with all of the writing and all of the holiday work. I finally made an appointment.
But I chickened out last week and canceled. I finally had to suck it up and go. I went yesterday. New doc takes another x-ray and now, I have no cartilage left. Surgery is in order. Um, well, I can’t do that, I have deadlines i tell the doc. He says, “Your hand can’t get any worse so it’s all about you living with the pain and decreased mobility.” I can live with that. Oh, and I get to go to a specialist who is going to build me a thumb splint. How sexy is that? I don’t really care, it will help, because I can’t have the surgery any time soon. So I did a very brave thing yesterday, I asked for the cortisone. My daughter was with me, because well, if it was like last time I would be in too much pain to make the short drive home. The doc gave me a shot of Novocain that burned so damn bad I thought I was gonna die. And because he gave me so much, I figured that was also the cortisone. I got up to leave. He told me to sit down. When it was time for the cortisone he took my thumb into his hand and told me to pull. Yikes! I’m such wuss. “It’ll hurt,” I whined. “Trust me, just pull.” I pulled away from him and he stuck that needle into my extended inflamed joint, and as I hyperventilated and he’s telling me to breath in then out and too hold still, I realized, um, it didn’t hurt. I could feel some pressure but it wasn’t painful. I was so conditioned to flinch when my hand was compromised I had myself all worked up and nearly fainting on the floor.
So, I felt so good, almost giddy, I drove home with a little detour for lunch, which included two spicy Bloody Mary’s and then home, then a nap, then I woke with excruciating pain in my hand. The Novocain had worn off, and the joint was screaming. I knew this am I would feel better, and now? No pain. zero, zilch,nada. Life is good. And the best part is,i can write for hours without the pain stopping me. Moral of the story. Don’t wait around when you need to take care of yourself. Just suck it up and do it, even if you know it will hurt or be uncomfortable. And this includes getting a mammogram! Speaking of which, I need to make my appointment.
I love getting my boobs smushed! Okay, I don’t but well, it’s just dumb not to. So go get one. Now!


  1. Tracey

    Karin – hugs for your hand. hope you have a pain free day and Happy writing.

  2. B.E. Sanderson

    It’s been a long time since I got a cortizone shot (I get them in my leg), but I remember them well. I can’t imagine getting them in my hands. Yeouch. You have my deepest sympathies.

  3. Karin

    Thanks, Tracey, the hand is much better today.
    B.E. my hubby has had a shot or two in his heel and knee. He said they were no picnic either.

  4. spyscribbler

    Oh, ouch! That’s awful! Oh, Karin, I’m sorry. We should all have hand and finger lessons in school. I hate seeing all the people that injure their hands!

    I’m glad it’s feeling better!

  5. Karin

    thanks, spy, and for the hug Lorie. 🙂

  6. Karin

    mini addendum
    if there is an obvious typo in an entry I’m going to allow it. I consider a typo and honest mistake, not breaking the rules. Just don’t claim to have typoed the entire line or a word that was nothing like the original word. 😉

  7. Edie Ramer

    Karin, glad the shot worked and you’re not in pain anymore. Good news.

    I need to make my mammo appt. too. Thanks for the reminder. I’ll do it tomorrow.

  8. Lorie Hartt


    It just seems to suck more when an injury is to such a vital part of a person. Writers make their art with their hands as well as their minds.

  9. Theresa


    I know exactly how you’ve been feeling with your hand like that. I ended up with a thumb so painful I couldn’t do anything with it. Which is agony when you’re a bookkeeper and spend all day counting money. The writing didn’t help, but my problem came from all the years of counting money.

    I’m glad yours is feeling better. And I’ll keep my fingers crossed that eventually you can find a more permanent solution than those damn shots.

  10. Loretta Wheeler

    …Gawd, never had one (cortisone shot)… they threatened once when I had problems with my heel, but it eventually self corrected, *sumthin’* hum? I called it *good* and ran like hell out of the Dr’s office. I’ve heard the pain is over the top with them, so coronary type fear is definitely appropriate!

    It was a relief to read that the typo thing is going to be acceptable, Thank God!…I can get a handle on my paranoia now! …

  11. Karin

    Theresa, does it still bother you?

  12. May

    Hugs Karin! Soldier on!

  13. Theresa

    Nope mine is fine now,

    I talked to the girls at the bank, since I’ve noticed several wear a thumb brace off and on. Turns out this type of thing is common amoung anyone who counts money. The brace helps take the preasure off. I picked one up, and within a week or so the pain started to subside. Now when it starts to hurt again, I just put the brace back on for a few days and that takes care of it.

  14. Cheryel Hutton

    Karin, sorry you’re having such a problem with your hand. I know from long experience what arthritis can do to a person. I’m very proud of your bravery getting that shot. Don’t know if I could have done it.

    Take care!

  15. Donna Kowalczyk

    Karin, I’m sorry about your thumb. My SIL has had thumb pain for years, but wouldn’t get her butt to the doctor. She finally did last fall and found out the same thing, she has arthritis. I have some at the top of my spine, which flares up about once a month, but I can’t imagine how hard it must be to have it in the thumb of your writing hand.

  16. Judy Soifer


    I’ve had cortisone injections in my hand and for carpool tunnel syndrome and my whole hand swelled. They almost operated in the ER that night, but the swelling finally went down. It hurt so much, I swore I’d never do it again. Then in the end I had to have the surgery anyway. I got carpool tunnel syndrome from hand ventilating premature babies, when I was a nurse.

    Now I have some other stupid problem in my right hand. And I’m so scared the doctor might want to inject me. After the last cortisone experience, I’m terrified. Now, my hands are even more important to me.

    I’m glad to hear that it wasn’t bad for you the second time and that it worked.

    Write on, sister. ☺

  17. Karin

    Thanks everyone for the well wishes, and back at those of you who suffer too. My hand feels soooo much better.

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