Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Hiatus Continues...

Now that the new Fall photography season is getting going, I had hoped to be back to full strength and ready to meet the challenges of endless new auctions to preview and shows to see. Unfortunately, the reality is that I have not yet completely recovered from the health issues that I mentioned earlier this summer, so the writing hiatus that began last July will have to continue a little while longer. Ugh.

This is a forum for the discussion of photography, so if you are not particularly interested in medical topics, skip this paragraph and continue reading below; otherwise, here's a short synopsis of what's been going on with me in the past month or so. In my last post, I mentioned that I had a pinched nerve in my back that had caused pain radiating down my right arm. And for most of the month of July, that's what everyone (including all my doctors) thought. The problem was that while I was getting treatment and physical therapy for the disc bulges, my arms were continuing to deteriorate on a daily basis, to the point that my right arm was numb/non-functional from fingers to shoulder and my left arm was numb/weakened from fingers to elbow. After much head scratching and some smart detective work by my neurologist, it became clear that my back issues were an unlucky coincidence, and that I also had late stage Lyme disease (apparently some call this disease "the great imitator"). In addition, the Lyme had kicked off a relatively obscure auto immune reaction (called CIDP, or chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, quite a mouthful) that was attacking the nerves in my arms. After confirming the diagnosis with another neurology expert in the city, I began IV infusion treatments for both the Lyme (antibiotics) and the CIDP (clean antibodies). Optimistically, I think I have hit the bottom and am now slowly beginning to recover; the good news is that my right arm has started to unfreeze and regain some motion, and the fatigue associated with Lyme has lessened significantly. Now I just have to work relentlessly to ensure that I regain full functionality in both arms.

So, since I am still a one finger, left handed typist at the moment, reviews, auction previews, and the like will have to wait a little longer. There are plenty of exciting shows and auctions coming up this Fall, and I'll do my best to get back to writing as soon as I am able; believe me, I am ready to get out of the house and think critically about photography again. So thanks so much for your enduring patience during this unexpectedly long interlude, and know that I am not somehow gone forever, but will be back to the galleries with my notebook in hand just as soon as my health allows.

14 comments:

Monroe Gallery of Photography said...

Best wishes for a full recovery, you are missed.

gphoto said...

Glad you are on the right path and wish you a speedy recovery as well.

Andrew Kessler said...

Looking forward to your reviews and glad to hear you are feeling better.

Anonymous said...

I bought a Rinko Kawauchi photo that I wouldn't have known about if it weren't for your column on her show at the Hermes gallery.I hope it cheers you to know that you've helped others build their photo collections.

It's great news you've been diagnosed and are finally getting the proper treatment. With your determination, you'll make a full recovery.

Best wishes,
Rudy

Alec Soth said...

Best wishes. You are indeed missed.

Alec Soth

Catherine Edelman said...

Wishing you a speedy recovery

Massimo Cristaldi said...

Wish you a full and speedy recovery!

Elizabeth Denny- Hasted Kraeutler gallery said...

I am so sorry to hear about your health problems. I hope you will recover soon. If you want to borrow a gallery intern for note-taking, you would be welcome!

Robert Holmgren said...

So the disc's are not bulging but merely mimicking those symptoms? How interesting.

mrs.deane said...

I can't offer you an intern, merely well wishes and good prospects for recovery. We'll be back as soon as you are.

Anonymous said...

get well!

Federico said...

Hope you continue to improve functionality of your arms, and regain your best form soon.

austin said...

Quickest of recoveries!

Chef said...

Best wishes, speed recovery (we are waiting your great work !!)
Bernadell -from Barcelona