I understand how you feel. I always try to face problems and do something about them. I was an ardent yoga practicioner before pf, so I too want to make it better through my own efforts and disciline. This has worked before in so many other parts of life. I don't like sitting in a chair for months waiting to get better so that I can stretch, but that might be necessary.
Concentrate on massaging the calves-- there is no damage to the pf in doing that. You can gently stretch the calves as well with the best gentle stretch for pf, which John B recently posted-- simply sticking you leg out straight and flexing the foot and toes back gently.
I think if you have faith in stretching and it has helped you before you are right to suspect it will help you again. Bob has a fairly useful range of experience with both failure and success in stretching. He is always gentle, tentative, and open minded in his posts. Remember that a PT's whole life revolves around exercise while a doctors does not. The doctor might see things clearer sometimes (don't tell anyone I said that about doctors), though you might not have to wait till you are %100 before stretching again.
When you do begin stretching again, graduate slowly, do it gently, do not hold the stretches, and warm up the muscles vigorously first.
The stair stretch has got to be some kind of sick joke the medical profession is playing on us. Certainly they can't be serious.