Although Tuesday was a good, high-energy day, yesterday my feet troubled me even more than at the end of last week's first dose of Taxol. I hobbled to lunch with a friend and tried to wander in a bookstore. After about 30 minutes I simply had to sit down. Getting home and putting my feet up for hours didn't help. By 10 PM I was practically in tears with frustration about the whole thing. I took some lorazepam, got into bed, and tried to forget the situation. Unfortunately, I still woke up with the same level of neuropathy.
Why does this neuropathy bother me so much? It makes me feel helpless when I have trouble moving around the house, much less trying to go out, walk the dog, drive the car, run an errand, cook a meal -- the really simple things in life that can be so easy to take for granted.
Part of my neuropathy experience feels like constant pins-and-needles tingling. That might not sound so bad, but remember, I said "constant." As in, no break: 60 seconds a minute, 60 minutes an hour, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. There is no escape from this tingling, a relatively low-level annoyance whose inescapability grates hard.
On top of the tingling there's the numbness. Parts of my feet, from the toes, through the ball of the foot and onto the heel, simply have no sensation. That means I need to be extra careful about tripping or losing my balance, since I might not be able to feel the floor beneath me well enough to correct my posture should I stumble. And I can't risk breaking a bone in a fall. This is why my gait is so rough. I lurch around the house from numb spot on one foot to another numb spot on the other foot. As a safety precaution, we've taken up all the floor rugs except one small one. The floors may be cold, but there is less for me to potentially trip over.
I hope that today's acupuncture appointment will bring some relief so that I am more able to live my life. After all, the dog needs a walk, and so do I.