Working in the construction trades is hard on the human body. Aches and pains come with work, and people who do these jobs learn to deal with them. After 25 years of paying that toll, I started doing something and saw a doctor.

In October 2019, I had carpal tunnel surgery on both hands. I regained most of my dexterity, but only about 75% of my hand strength after completing physical therapy.

Once the excruciating pain in my hands, forearms, and wrists eased somewhat, I started telling the doctor about other pain I had in my ankles, knees, and hips. His initial diagnosis was arthritis, but after consultations with orthopedic specialists and a podiatrist, it was determined that the pain I was experiencing was not normal.

Apparently, the flat feet I’d had all my life were causing my tendons to pinch in my ankles and misalignment in my knees and hips. I was given orthotic inserts for my shoes, knee pads for support, and a few more months of physiotherapy to strengthen my lower half of the body.

Needless to say I was out of work for a while. At the end of my first day back, I had excruciating back pain. An X-ray and MRI showed that I had also suffered from a collapsed disc in the lower spine for who knows how long… According to my back and spine specialist, there was no reason for me to receive medical benefits. ‘disability.

While all of this was going on with me, my brother was having his own issues. At the end of 2020, he was diagnosed with a rare genetic blood disease. During my next physical in July, I asked my doctor to test me. Indeed, I also have hemochromatosis and since October I have had weekly phlebotomies to try to bring the amount of iron in my blood back to normal levels. It turns out that one of the effects of having too much iron is joint degeneration…

All of this while a global pandemic was raging was a bit surreal, but by relentlessly following CDC guidelines, I managed to avoid contracting Covid along the way. That’s not the end of the story though, and I’ll probably be accused of burying the lede…

In all the tests I had during this July physical, they noticed something else… I had a consultation with a proctologist, and although I had absolutely no symptoms, it wanted to perform more tests. I had another MRI and it showed an abnormality in my prostate. He then made me suffer through a humiliating biopsy. Turns out the abnormality was the non-cancerous part…

The results of a subsequent CT scan and bone scan concluded that the cancer has not spread to other parts of my body, thankfully. I am told that what I have is a middle of the road type. It’s not too aggressive, but it’s not the kind of expectation either…

On Friday, I’m going to have robotic surgery to remove my entire prostate. If all goes well, I won’t need radiotherapy or chemotherapy. In preparation, I had to stop taking ibuprophen for my pain, so I’m pretty uncomfortable right now. Thursday I have to go on a clear liquid diet, which I’m not looking forward to…

My family is holding up pretty well, I think… I hope I’ve rubbed off enough on them to accept life and the world for what it’s worth. It is what it is… We don’t need to worry about things we can’t change.

This log is intended for informational purposes only. I don’t need any help. Although I did not qualify for disability, being unemployed fully qualified me for state Medicaid benefits. They are awesome and I didn’t have to pay a penny for the exceptional medical care I received. I really wish everyone in this country was so lucky.

I fully intend to resume my efforts to seek justice for the attempted overthrow of our elected government once I recover. I still have total faith that we will get there. All indicators point in that direction despite the kids sitting in the back asking “are we there yet?” We’ll get there, when we get there… As I’ve said before, “it takes patience to watch history unfold.

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