Barefoot and happy
Sorry to hear about your injury, jhill. I certainly don't blame you for being upset.
Let this be a lesson to the rest of you beginners. Seriously, when we old-timers say you should run barefoot first, THIS IS WHY. It's nearly impossible to do this kind of damage to yourself if you're barefoot. There would have been immediate pain, way before serious damage was done.
Wanting to run with a barefoot form in barefoot "shoes" without ever actually running barefoot is like wanting to BQ without every actually doing a long run. Does not compute. Can some people get away with it? Yes. Will you? Do you feel lucky, punk?
There is a safe and simple way to get there. Grow a little courage and take off the shoes. The first time you do it you'll realize how silly you were being when you were afraid of it.
I know it's been a long time, but here's an update if anyone cares. Neuroma removal was on May 18th, and the surgeon opened the joint, but it looked fine. I woke up from surgery w/burning pain in my toe that has never stopped. It has been 5 1/2 months. Had extreme swelling after surgery that actually caused some nerve damage (burning and lots of electrical 'zapping' in the foot). The skin on the top of my foot and toes (3-4 inch radius around the incision/scar) felt like it was being burned in an oven at the slightest touch. Taking my stitches out 1 week after surgery stung and burned like a mother F. Something was wrong. Very wrong. 5 months and many doctors later, here I am. From my surgery a developed a syndrome/disease called RSD (Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy) or it's also called CRPS (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome). It caused swelling, horrific burning pain, dis-colorization, immobility, headaches, it can spread, and there is no cure. I've been getting nerve blocks into my back to treat this because apparently it is a serious, life-changing disease of the nervous system. They're trying to get me into remission, but so far it has been unsuccessful. Now I'm just hoping it won't spread into my entire leg/other limbs/whole body. There is very little chance that I will ever run again. The neuroma surgery was also unsuccessful - he didn't get it all. Still feel like I'm stepping on a sharp rock every time I put weight on the forefoot. I have a permanent, painful limp now. I have to swim to get any exercise; swimming is my only option for exercise. I don't like it very much, and it sucks having to work around the schedule at the pool. I wish I would have never started running, although I am still proud that I did a 9-mile run last year. Happy running to all of you. Bye.
Sorry things didn't work out for you. Unfortunately you are the poster child for why I don't like Vibrams (as the first "barefoot" experience). I have a friend that has been all excited about how many miles he has been running in his Vibrams and he doesn't understand why I don't approve. I have tried to explain why I think he is setting himself up for an injury but he just can't see it.
As far as the neuroma surgery goes, I am so happy that I didn't take that route. I was very frustrated with my neuroma and I had done physical therapy and orthotics with no relief. I started shopping around for surgeons and that is when I started reading all the horror stories similar to your experience and I decided to try some more things first. The toe stretchers were so cheap, simple and effective that no doctor would ever recommend them. It really shouldn't surprise anybody that a doctors first choice is going to be what makes them the most profit. Kind of the same result you will get when buying a pair of running shoes$$$$$.
Good luck with your recovery.