I am going to pretend that at least one person will read this. Blogging can be weird because you have to act a lot like you are talking to an audience. Well, you don’t HAVE to. I’m already way off topic.
Anywhooze, here is the deal in a nutshell…
I started to have some back problems in the Early 2000’s. I had an MRI done and the doctor indicated I had a very small crack between my L5 and S1. Off and on for about ten years I would have sporadic pain. Sometimes very minor, and other times there was pain so great that I could barely walk.
In July of 2011, I took my wife and daughter to Naperville, Illinois to meet family. It’s the halfway point and I would drop them off every July and would go get them again around a month later. Pretty routine. On the way home I felt fine. No issues with my back.
I woke up the next morning and couldn’t walk. I could not move my left leg at all and my back was just screaming at me. I had never in my life felt this kind of pain. I’ve broken bones, had sports injuries, and have listened to Air Supply. I know what pain is. So, because I am an idiot (something those who know me already know), I got to the floor of my upstairs bedroom, crawled out to the stairs. I am stopping all the time because I was in agony.
I tossed my cell phone down the stairs because why use it to call an ambulance? Duh. I slowly crawl down the stairs. This entire time I have no usage of my left leg and barely my right. After what felt like hours, I got downstairs, grabbed the phone, crawled through the dining room, kitchen, and then into the garage to the car. Getting in the car was no small feat. I had enough movement in my right foot to justify that I could operate a vehicle.
Stupidity at its finest.
I leave to the hospital. Halfway there I call the ER and tell them the story and I was on the way. I pulled up and was met by staff who put me on the cart and rushed me in. The security officer parked my car and brought me my keys later. Luckily no one was hurt due to my ignorance/arrogance (and any other words that end with “ance”) while driving.
Several paragraphs ago I said “in a nutshell”. I lied.
So long story short I was in the hospital for a week. No one in town from my family, and was pretty much alone. My L5 and S1 separated and I was introduced to morphine. Gross. I am not a person who thinks being chemically altered helps me. This was on a Sunday. On the next Thursday, I had started to get a little feeling in my left leg, and could actually raise my foot enough to use crutches.
They had me practicing with them several times on Thursday afternoon and Friday morning. Prior, I had a back brace on that could make Batman jealous. So Friday I lied and said I was fine enough to go home and I did.
I had three visitors that week. An employee of mine. A friend who brought me new underwear because I felt gross, and the owner of my favorite pizza place with a pizza. They didn’t have a delivery service. He is an amazing guy.
I went back to work the next week, and barely did anything thanks to my pain meds. Then what did I do? I DROVE TO MICHIGAN. Why? I was meeting my family and we were surprising my daughter and were going to Disneyworld. WE FLEW THERE. I’m rotating between a wheel chair and crutches. The whole thing, looking back, is almost a blur. A veritable plethora of idiocy.
In September I was able to get in for surgery. It was a PLIF, or posterior lumbar interbody fusion. It’s a fancy way to say spinal fusion. 4 screws, 2 rods, a cadaver bone, an 8 inch scar, and 25 staples later, and there I was. Drooling. For 5 weeks.
“It will get better and you will be 100 percent by around 8 weeks!” said the doctor, who was clearly batshit insane.
Seven years later and two more smaller back surgeries later, I still have pain 24 hours a day. I sleep 3 to 5 hours a night. Never consecutively.
I will use this space to chronicle pain issues, remedies, solutions, and lots and lots of whining. That much I can tell you for free.