One of These Knees is Not Like the Other

When I was pregnant with the boy, I had serious low back pain. All I had to do was sit on the floor in front of the couch, relax my back on the cushions behind it and I’d hear a low *pop* sound.
And then I was stuck. Movement was excruciating, and I wither and twist and cry trying to get up. When I’d had enough, I went to see a chiropractor.
He popped my back in. I went home. It popped back out THAT VERY NIGHT.
A few weeks went by and I made another appointment with the chiropractor. I was desperate for some relief.
He popped my back in. I went home. It popped back out THAT VERY NIGHT.
I so I trudged through my pregnancy, holding my back and writhing in pain. After my son was born, my bones gradually hardened and the back pain became a minor irritation.
I told my husband I didn’t want to get pregnant again until I’d fixed the back situation. Except that we got pregnant anyway.
A few weeks into my pregnancy, I sat on the floor in front of my couch and relaxed my back against the cushion.
I heard a sickening low *pop* and said, “ohhhhhhhhh grrrrrrreat.”
At the end of each day, I’d be rubbing my lower back and walking around with something of a labored limp. I didn’t think it was possible, but the pain was WORSE this time.
“Call the chiropractor,” was my husband’s theme song.
“It will get popped in and it will pop back out!” was my refrain.
And then Tuesday came. I cooked all day, barefoot, in my kitchen. Wednesday I couldn’t get out of bed until 1:30 in the PM.
I finally called the chiropractor. This time, I went to see my parent’s chiropractor -the guy who treats my father who works on his feet all day, doing hard labor and cracking his back out at least once a year. He also treats my mother with great success.
I’d seen him once before for a minor sports injury. I don’t remember much except that his tall, thin frame certainly doesn’t feel thin when he’s using it to pop your back.

I took my kids with me, sat them in the corner with Netflix on my phone (lifesaver!) and The Good Doctor studied my legs.
I wondered what he could be doing… I thought back doctors just cracked and popped. This one was just… looking.
As I laid on my back, he gently pushed my feet toward my body, bending my knees.
“Do you see that?” He asked, “Look at your kneecaps.”
“What?” I asked, “My right knee has been hurting pretty bad…”
“But look…” he pointed at my kneecaps.”
I didn’t see anything but the kneecaps I’d been staring at for years and years and years.

“What is it?” I finally asked.
“They’re not even,” he said, and placed the tips of his fingers on each one.
“Ohhhhh,” I could suddenly see it. Once an object was placed on each one it became glaringly obvious.

“Your right leg is shorter than your left leg,” he said.
And I couldn’t help it -I burst out laughing.
He popped and cracked and adjusted me and then checked my knees again. All the adjustments he had made had lengthened my right leg by 1/8″.
He told me that sometimes minor adjustments would fix a problem like mine… but not mine. Because my leg difference was too great.
He sent me home with a heel insert to wear in my shoes and strict instructions to be VERY careful about how much time I spend going barefoot.
So today, after I’ve showered and gotten the house in somewhat working order, I’m going to crochet myself some tight-fitting slippers to wear around the house.
To think that I’d spent all day Tuesday on a hard floor, BAREFOOT… no wonder I couldn’t get out of bed the next day!
The Good Doctor also explained that had I not caught this problem until I was much older, I would have been riddled with arthritis, scoliosis and a myriad of other not-so-fun health issues.
I guess I still have the potential to be riddled with those awesome ailments, in the case that I sacrifice my health for my vanity and sport sandals all summer without my cool special heel insert.
My back in hurting because it’s adjusting to the heel, but I slept so soundly last night. I haven’t slept THAT soundly in weeks.
Thanks be to The Good Doctor. In a few months, I’ll be back in his care getting some insoles ordered for my high-arched feet… the heel will be built into the right side.
The upside? I get to do some shoe shopping! I’m going to be needing QUITE a few more pairs since half the ones I own are now obsolete.
With love,


  1. I think you are gorgeous! I also love reading your blog. We think very much alike but you are so much more articulate than I.

    • storylady says:

      You’re toooo nice! I definitely do not feel pretty at all right now -I can’t wait for my birthday in a few weeks. Months ago, I asked for a trip to the salon as my gift. That always helps me so much. If my hair looks good, I’m a happy, happy girl.
      I’m glad I’m not the only one who thinks this way!!! It makes me feel like I’m not crazy -maybe if other people feel like this too, I’m not totally crazy: I’m just a different version of normal :)

  2. Sarah Farr says:

    Alicia! I read this post today and felt SO much better about myself… Now I know I’m not the ONLY girl on earth with a short leg… My right leg is about 3/8 of an inch shorter and I’ve been wearing a heel lift for a few years now. It makes me happy to know that someone else knows how I feel! Thanks so much for this post!

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