Friday, January 28, 2011

Ode to Compression Stockings

Oh how I love thee compression stockings.
I compare thy hug to a size 8 woman trying to squeeze into a size 2 jean.
Your tight embrace compels my feet to do an Irish jig,
and your firm squeeze sends a burst of energy that gets me through my day!
I will loveth thee all the days of my life!

I was told over a year ago to purchase compression stockings to help with my pooling and circulation issues. The first time the doctor mentioned it to me waves of horror sent shivers down my spine with the thought of wearing something so ugly and lacking of style. By the second visit and second recommendation to purchase the stockings I thought I should be a good patient and give them a try. I went on line to check them out and my jaw hit the floor at the price of one pair of stockings. I could buy a cute pair of fine Italian leather shoes for the price of one pair of UGLY stockings! I'm NOT going to spend that much money on a pair of socks! So being the cheapskate that I am I went to my local drugstore and bought a pair of cheap ones that cost less than $10.00, and headed for my favorite shoe salesman at Nordtroms for a nice pair of peep toed flats. I put on the cheap compression stockings and I couldn't tell the difference between them and my normal socks except for the fact that the compression stockings cut off my circulation below the knees.

One year later and I'm with a new neuro and he also recommends the compression stockings. I cheerfully tell him they don't work and we move on to other more important issues. Three months later and the dreaded subject of compression stockings is brought up again! I'm beginning to wonder if maybe there might actually be something to these compression stockings and sheepishly bring up the fact that the stockings I tried were very cheap. I told the doctor that compression stockings are very expensive and if he might write me a prescription for them, and he agrees! I'm still not completely sold on the stockings idea and hold on to the prescription. A week later my legs are in more pain than I've ever experienced. The pain and discomfort is so bad that I'm beginning to wonder if I can continue to work with this much pain. I finally decide the compression stockings may be my last option. My former husband may have been right about one thing, I am a stubborn German!

With prescription in hand I head to my local medical supply store and hand them my prescription. I'm told to have a seat and someone would be with me shortly for a fitting. A FITTING! I look at the guy and say "Excuse me, I'm just here for compression stockings, not crutches or anything like that!" He smiles and says I need to be fitted which is normal procedure for compression stockings." I sit down and wait, and within minutes a lady with a tape measure begins measuring various parts of my legs. She hands me one pair of thigh high stockings in my desired color, and she asks me if I know how to put on compression stockings? I give her a "are you kidding me look" and she takes that as a "no" and begins giving me a "lesson" on putting on compression stockings. In my head I'm thinking sock are socks, I should be able to handle it. But I have nothing better to do with my time so I actually take note of the key points to her lesson. I'm thinking one pair of stockings are not going to get me through a week of working. I mention my concern and she directs me to the calf high section and I chose a pair of navy socks to wear with my jeans. I'm thinking the insurance company will pay for the thigh high and I'll pay for the other pair. We head for the cash register and she announce the total, almost a hundred dollars! I mention the prescription and she explains that the insurance companies will not pay for compression stockings because they are considered cosmetic. I explain that I have orthostatic intolerance and that it's definitely not for cosmetic reasons. She says sorry but they have NEVER been covered by the insurance companies. I'm thinking "seriously, who would want to purchase a pair of these ugly things for appearances sake!". I end up charging them and head out the door.

The next morning I take my lovely knee highs out of the box. I attempt to put them on and soon find that the traditional way is not going to work. It's 6 am and my brain is still on defog mode. What did the lady say to do....tick.....tick.....tick, hmmm, something about turning them inside out, not sure why. I turn them inside out and can't get them over my toes and up my foot. I keep trying and end up falling over backwards. As I lay there I'm thankful I attempted this on the bed. But now I've got to get myself up which is never an easy task for me. I'm back in my sitting position and make another attempt to get these "special" socks on. After 5 minutes I get the first sock on, woohoo! Now I'm tired and I still have one more sock to put on. As I hold up my second sock my arms are shaking but the experience with the first sock makes it a bit easier to get the second one on. As I sat there on my bed recouping from putting on my stockings I'm thinking the time and energy spent putting on these stockings are probably not going to be worth any results I may get from these things and that I probably just waisted a chunk of money.

I'm in the parking lot at work and the walk to my classroom is probably the most difficult walk of the day, so off I head for my classroom. I notice the difference immediately. I feel like I have more of a spring to my step, hmmm this is good. I get through my first hour of teaching and I feel pretty good as far as my legs are concerned. By the end of the day I'm feeling not an ounce of pain or fatigue that usually plague me at that time and I'm ecstatic! I head for the parking lot and notice I still have a glint of the spring in my step from earlier in the morning and I'm smiling from ear to ear.

I get home and go on line and order four more pair of stockings and find out that there's quite a discount on line and in larger quantity purchases. I love these things so much that I begin to envision how I'm going to incorporate my stockings into my summer wardrobe. Maybe I could begin a fashion trend of wearing compression stockings with shorts and skirts! The next days unseasonably warm weather put a quick halt to wearing compression stockings in the heat. My feet felt like they were doing hard labor in a sweat shop in those things.

If you've been putting off purchasing compression stockings for vanity reasons or costs. I will tell you that they are worth more than all my designer shoes in my closet. I'm kind of like that guy in the DR Seuss book Green Eggs and Ham I will not eat green eggs and Ham, I will not try them Sam I am or in my case I will not try compression stockings, I will not wear them doc I am! After my first day,
I will wear them on a train and on a boat and in the rain!
I will wear them in a tree, they are so go, so good you see!
I will wear them here and there, I will wear them anywhere!


Proverbs 1:5 A wise man will hear and increase in learning. And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel.

1 comment:

  1. I've only tried the cheapy ones from Walmart. I really should give these a go. Very funny but great post! hehe