Sunday, June 5, 2011

My Pain Explained

As most of you probably already know, I am going on Wednesday to have back surgery. There have been a lot of questions and comments since the decision to have surgery was made. I am going to try to answer and explain what has lead me to this.

My problems with my back started when I was around seventeen years old. After many years of cheerleading, playing tennis and being an avid runner, my back started to suffer.And, yes, I used to be skinny enough to do all those things.....hard to believe, I know! Any way, I had problems off and on for years but, it was not until I was in my early twenties, that I was diagnosed with a degenerative bone disease. I was told then that I would eventually have to have surgery.

Over the years I would just have flair ups that were handled with anti-inflammatory medication and occasionally pain medication. The occasional episodes became more frequent but, were still manageable.  All of that changed three and half years ago when I was in a car accident and fractured my back in the same area that I already had problems with. This caused my spine to shift forward. I now have two vertebrae that are sitting on top of each other with no cushioning between them and my sciatic nerve is being crushed between them.

Now, I told you all of that so that you would understand the technical details. The physical and emotional details of living with this is just not so easy to explain.

For the last three and half years I have suffered with constant excruciating pain. Until the last few months, I have not talked about it, mentioned it or advertised it. Only my family and closest friends knew what I was going through and even then, I don't think they realized just how bad it was. That is just not my way. I keep things like this to myself and deal with it the best way I can.

I don't take pain medication because I don't want to go through life in a fog. I live with the pain by going to another place. Does that make sense? I learned years ago in Lamaze class, to concentrate on something else and not focus on the pain. This is what I do.

I had someone to accuse me of trying to be a Martyr! Really? That is how you see it? I don't see it that way. After growing up with a Mother who has Lupus, rheumatoid and various other illnesses, I have seen what something like this does to everyone in the household. This is not something I wanted for my kids. I wanted them to enjoy their childhood and I wanted to be right there with them, not laying in a bed while they were out living their lives.

Before anyone decides to run to my Mother and make something of the above statement that was not intended, I had a great childhood and I do not resent my Mother for being sick. It is what it is. While I was able to enjoy growing up, there has always been an underlying since of worry about my Mom. This worry has always hung over me like a dark cloud. I did not want that for my kids!

I have always lived my life running full speed ahead. I love to go and do and get there as fast as I can. The last few years, I have not been able to do that. 

I am not a whiner or complainer. The last few months, I feel like that is all I do and I hate it! I despise being weak and I hate the pain even more. There are so many things I want to do and can't. I hate that too.

This surgery is my lifeline. This is my hope for the future. I did not go into this lightly, I fought it as long as I could and still held out hope that there was something else that could be done. I cried and cried the day I was told that this surgery was my only option. Since then, I have researched and talked to others who have had this same surgery. I am confident in my doctor and I am at peace. I have turned this over to God and he will handle it all for me.

In three days I will have back surgery. I am going into it with hope, fear, excitement and peace. I will recover. I will be pain free. I will be able to once again take back my life. Not only will I take it back......I am going to run with it just as fast as I possibly can..........Who wants to run with me? Come on......I know you do......SO........Get Ready! I have places to go and lots of things to do and I am not waiting around for any slow pokes!


DebbieT in Alabama said...

Prayers up for a smooth procedure, an uneventful hospital stay, and a pile of puppy kisses when you return home. This decision is what's best for you, and I know you've not made it lightly. Go forward with confidence and resolve - it's all being handled!

Anonymous said...

We are right behind you! I can't believe you're not on pain mgmt! I'm proud of you and even prouder to call you MY friend because of it! Please have someone txt or call me to let me know what's going on. I can't FB at work. You're an amazing woman....and a wonderful friend. Good luck! I know EVERYTHING is going to be good. Please let me know if there is anything we can do. I mean that!!! Hugs and LOTS of Love! =)~ kbt