Run up to surgery # . . . whatever!

Back on September 1st, I met with Dr. Stace’ Rust about the knot/lump/whatever which has been forming on my left hand ring finger, palm-side and just below the first knuckle.  It has been growing for several months……..not actually sure how long, as I have a bad habit of trying to ignore “little things”, even when they get in the way of normal mobility or make tasks harder. (It’s called Surviving RA!)  I finally quit ignoring this one when it occurred to me that I might not be able to remove my wedding ring or engagement band without having them cut off  by a jeweler!  Tom accomplished the removal with liquid dish soap, a great deal of pulling and some mashing of the knuckle; that was enough to convince me I needed to find a hand surgeon!  ( The wizard who performed three reconstructive surgeries on my right hand, the last one several years ago, has since switched to the more lucrative field of plastic surgery!! )

During my mid- August appointment with my rheumatologist, I asked him who his favorite hand surgeon was.  I was lucky on several counts; her practice is located close-by, she was accepting new patients, and I could get an appointment with her relatively quickly!  At the first visit (Sept. 1st) , she had several x-rays taken to rule out a bone chip or other solid mass. Nothing there, except a rather crooked finger. (Take note . . . .things can hide from an x-ray!)  Examining the finger, she posited three possibilities; rheumatoid nodule, benign tumor or cyst.  We could confirm or rule out door number three by having her attempt to use the typical, rather large needle & syringe to drain it.  Yes, I let her – yes, it is a fairly uncomfortable procedure – yes, it was a cyst.  Caveat: it could still return, at which point we would need to discuss surgery.

September 2nd, when I removed the band aid, the cyst had refilled and enlarged a bit!  Rats!   Back to Dr. R’s ~ time to get me on the surgical schedule. I saw her on Sept. 13th and my calendar turned out to be much more of a problem then hers!  Sept. 17th-19th was the Society of American Miniaturists (SAM’s) Wonderful  Workshop Weekend. I was signed up for two workshops, haven’t been to a real Miniatures Show in over a year, this was the firs Workshop Weekend at the new Temple, Texas venue  and I  Was Going!  Sept.21st & 22nd were appointments I had already booked with medical appointments and  Sept. 24th was our last round-trip to Houston & Baylor University for follow-up on Tom’s injured left eye (we’re rotating him back to the excellent medical team here in San Antonio, and I was not going to make that drive in surgical bandages)!  Finally settled on October 21st, which sent me into an energy-draining quest to complete everything on my “You need two hands” list before the chosen date. I almost finished everything on the list, too!

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