My Dear Reader,
For some reason unexplainable by science, my right shoulder has gotten the impression that it needs to rebel against the proletariat, which just happens to be the rest of my body. In other words, it's kind of like the grandmother on My Big Fat Greek Wedding: every once in a while, it launches a futile attempt to escape. My shoulder started getting the idea to revolt sometime during my senior year of high school. There I was one day, going along my merry way, completely unaware that my shoulder had been producing anarchist manifestos when crack! it came out. And it was not fun. In order for you to understand exactly what I was going through, Gentle Reader, imagine how you would feel if you were walking down the street, when suddenly, your arm fell off. What are you supposed to do when your arm falls off? Are you supposed to pick up the severed arm and try to put it back on? How are you supposed to do that when it hurts that bad? What if it won't come back on? Where are the people who are supposed to help you? What are you going to do with only one arm? Isn't someone supposed to be helping you? How are you supposed to pick up your arm when you hurt so much? What if other things start falling off? Is it safe for you to leave the house? You are never going to graduate.
So imagine being hurt, and in panic, and having something be horribly wrong with you that you desperately need to fix, all at the same time. And imagine that happening to you once a year or so for about six years, and you'll get my predicament. You see, when your shoulder dislocates once, the ligaments or muscles or tendons or something get stretched out, so you're more likely to pop your shoulder out again. When it happened, my Madre told me that I would probably have to go into surgery to tighten up my shoulder so it wouldn't happen again. Which is why I never went to a doctor about it. I was able to get my shoulder in on my own, and I didn't want to risk having some guy cut me open and poke around inside.
Of course, here's the thing: when you don't go to the doctor about certain things, people tend to think that you just made it up. When I was in high school, there was this one girl-who-shall-not-be-named who tried to convince me that I was delusional.* Here's another thing: when you dislocate your shoulder, you know that you dislocated your shoulder. When something comes out of its socket, you can tell. But for some reason, we need doctors to legitimize our suffering. In the back of my mind, I always knew that I would have to go to the doctor eventually, but I still put it off. Even after my shoulder came out time after time.
The strangest things would cause my shoulder to come out. Once, I was vacuuming. Another time, I was hitting the snooze button on my alarm clock, and before that, PetiteSoeur bumped up against me. Twice, I was sleeping. You know, you can learn a lot about a roommate by what she does when you wake up screaming. My first roommate told me that I was being a baby and to let her get some sleep. The second one asked me if I was okay, and then took the steps necessary to make me more okay. Still, I didn't want to see a doctor. I knew how to get the shoulder in quickly, and I wasn't in much pain. Besides, I'm a college student who doesn't have the time or funds to be sick.
When I dislocated my shoulder last Thursday for the second time in two weeks, I knew that the jig was up: I had to see a doctor this time. I was at work when it happened, pulling a large rubber mat off of a rack. The funny thing was that I didn't do it for me, I did it because I knew that if I didn't have a doctor's note, I'd probably fail the two P.E. classes I'm taking. The ones that I have to pass to graduate. So I went into the doctor, and you know what? The doctor believed me. She didn't even second guess me at all. And then she told me exactly what my Madre had told me before: surgery was probably imminent. And this time, I really can't get out of it.
Having my shoulder dislocate doesn't bother me that much, but surgery does. I can't even give blood without freaking out, so my guess is that I'll probably have to have them knock me out while I'm still in the waiting room. I have two consolations when it comes to this surgery: the first being that I might be able to put off my surgery until after graduation, and the second being that once it's over, I can go anywhere I want without worrying about exploding. And I think that might be worth it.
Regards, best wishes, and the best of health,
P.S. I've decided to take Kelly's advice and use my two dollars to treat someone to a dollar movie. It should be pretty magical.
*This same person also got in an argument with me over just about everything, so I shouldn't have been surprised. She once argued with me and a friend over whether it was cold, really cold, or really-really cold outside, which turned into an argument over whether we should argue about how cold it was. She's one of those people who will never stop arguing until you agree with her, and I kind of avoided her from then on.