Tuesday, September 8, 2009

I Am Not An Invalid or On The Pity Pot, I Am Scared!

When does one cross over that fine line between being sick and recovering from not one but two major back surgeries, from being just someone trying to recover to someone who is now considered an invalid? I NOT now, nor will I EVER BE, an invalid and by calling me that, you just give me more resolve to fight a battle I have never fought before!

When I went into surgery, I was happy, I knew finally, after years of suffering with back aches, leg aches, pains that woke me up at night or wouldn't let me sleep and many times left me dragging my leg behind me, would soon be over! I knew I would have some pain for awhile, but this is freakin ridiculous!

I am used to living with pain, I have lived with it, worked with it, smiled through it and did everything under the sun I was told to do to make it better: loose weight, walk more, ride a bike, swim, pain clinics, physical therapy, accupuncture, etc. Through it all, I swallowed Aleve like Jelly Beans and smiled all the way.

If I complain about the pain, no one wants to hear it, but I need to let everyone know this pain is different, this pain is scaring the hell out of me and while I am told it is only temporary, I wonder if it really is.

Today, I drove to Olympia to see my Rheumatologist and even though I stop several times and get out and walk, by the time I arrived, I could barely pull myself out of the car and forget sitting in the office, I stood.

I saw the doctor, he asked me about pain and what I felt in certain areas...some hurt more than others and while I now have knee pain, he said my knees are not swollen. My hands and feet were, but my knees aren't and they are one of the areas that really hurt.

So, we discussed my surgeries (he was shocked to find out I had to have 2) and decided that anti-inflamatories and corticosteroids were not an option at all because they would actually be a deterrant to my fusion taking hold like it should.

Pain meds, do I take them? Yes, I take pain meds and NO, sorry, even taking 2 at a time doesn't help and one gave me twitches. Sooooooooooooo, we once again changed my pain medication and placed me on a nerve medication that is supposed to work on the nerves that cause pain in my back.

Hmmm, so I switch meds (I have learned to keep the old ones, because twice so far, I have had to revert to old medication to give some relief!) to see if we can get my pain under control and when we do, I am expected to drive and work for 4 hours? I think I will wait to see how the new meds work out first.

I am not on the pity pot, I am not felling sorry for myself, I just want to be able to sleep at night without pain, roll over without pain, walk without pain.

I am scared. No, I am terrified, terrified of losing my mobility, my freedom, of not being able to drive, or having to rely on others to perform work I am supposed to do and worst of all, I am terrified, we won't be able to pay our bills, have heat this winter and so many other things.

I am scared, but don't expect to hear it in my voice or see it on my face!


Anonymous said...

Try not to get too discouraged. It took me a good year following my total spine fusion to feel even half-way myself again. Even now after two full years I still have pain but it's not the stabbing and shooting pain that I constantly had before. Just take it one day at a time.

Rannyjean said...

Thanks for your support Bev, I feel I am loosing my mind!

Anonymous said...

You're not. Your body has been through A LOT. It takes bones a long time to heal - especially in your back because it supports your entire body. Really, one day at a time. If you do that you will realize that every day things ARE just a little better. When I got discouraged I always said a prayer and thanked God that I survived the surgery and that there are physicians who can help people like us. I can't imagine what people went through years ago when there were no surgeries that could help. Don't push yourself too hard. Baby steps will soon be real adult steps. ;-) If you ever need to just vent or talk my email is beverooni at hotmail dot com.

Cathy said...

Jean, remember that you will find your way. Your pain will heal. Do you have a prayer you say for your healing? I have a mantra, "My body is always healing." Repeat your prayer or mantra over and over. Don't stop. Your brain needs to know that you see something different happening with your body. It will happen. It will.

Rannyjean said...

Bev and Cathy, thanks for the cleansing tears this morning. Yes, I do have a prayer when I am in pain...Lord, please, stick a fork in me, I am done!
Once that is over, I thank him for my surgeon who is so compassionte and for the healing I can't see or feel. Of course, I have wonderful blog friends and close friends who keep telling me...baby steps! I wish I could hug you both!

Melinda Cornish said...

I am so sorry Sweet jean.....It is going to get better I know...I love you girl, hang in there!!!!!!