Monday, May 5, 2014

Oh Woe is ME

Talk about crash and burn.
There I was on a writing high.
The words and ideas couldn't come fast enough.
I wrote my friend Amy that my muse had returned and I couldn't type fast enough to keep up with her.

Then my Rx for steroids ran out, and so did my words.
My back has been giving me fits.
L4 and L5 respectively.
Except they show me no respect.
They pinch, stab, grab me in a choke hold until I'm at their mercy.
Those are my words. The therapist says they are "restricted."

Restricted as in doesn't move well, or as in a teenager on restriction doing everything she can to make life miserable for the person who inflicted the punishment. Either way, the end result is the same.

It's been almost a month since I visited the orthopedic doc. His first suggestion was physical therapy. If you know me, you know anything with the word "physical" in it will probably not be my cup of tea. But hey, if it'll make the pain stop, I'm all for it. Just call me Stretch Armstrong. Morning and night found me doing all kinds of stretches, with the goal of tightening up my core.

Don't ask me how it's supposed to work. I was told I needed a tighter core, so I went to town trying to get one.

On my third visit, a Saturday morning at the ungodly hour of 10, John was my therapist. He ran me through the drill - heat, stretch, stretch, stretch ….. Then had me roll over on my stomach and started pushing and pressing on my lower back. Every time he touched a sore spot I almost flew off the table.  John is the one who told me how restricted I am.  So then he does something I can't see, can only feel. Kind of like pushing his knuckles into the sore spot and applying pressure. The funny thing is, it didn't hurt. I mean, I knew he was doing something, but I wasn't in pain. After that he iced me down and sent me on my way. I could actually stand up straight, which took away my stopped over, Neanderthal appearance.

The following Monday, I actually had a period of time where I was pain free. Indeed, John could be called a miracle worker.

Then I flew to Chattanooga, drove 3 hours there and back to Nashville, and sat in hospital waiting rooms for most of the day with my sister who was having some serious conversations with doctors about a little ol' brain tumor. A benign acoustic neuroma to be exact. When I woke up the next day at 4 am to catch a 6am flight home, I could barely move. I wandered like a zombie through two airports with balancing my computer bag and luggage, trying not to lean too far in either direction. Silent tears ran down my face. I must have looked pretty bad cause when I asked to board first along with the "passengers in wheelchairs" they offered to take me down on an elevator. When I saw the stairs I had to climb to get inside the plane, I almost turned around. What good would that have done? Sweetie and Miracle Worker John were waiting for me in Jacksonville.

Both told me to rest which got no argument from me. The next morning I went to therapy and begged for more "mobo" "mojo" or whatever it was that had helped me before. For all intents and purposes I haven't moved far from the bed since then. Thank God for Ibuprofen and sleep-inducing muscle relaxants. Thank God for Sweetie who tip toes in and out of the room. Thank God for Johnson who brings me Cokes to drink. Thank god for Maizey for guarding me from the cats, and Suzi for guarding the dog cookies. Thank God for the lady who called in another Rx today. More steroids. Yuk, I know.  But a girl has to do what a girl has to do.

I know I'm a big baby. I wish I was big and strong and laugh in the face of pain. For now, I hope to feel better tomorrow so I can get back to therapy. Funny, I just heard Olivia Newton John singing in the recesses of my brain …. let's get physical, physical.

Hoping the saga doesn't last too long,
Merry ME

1 comment:

Jody said...

You weren't a baby at all. Airplane seating and doctor's office/hospital chairs are notorious for their lack of proper support.

Thank goodness you have an EXCELLENT therapist! Keep going to him, and doing what he suggests, as frequently as you can.

A stronger core (stomach muscles) help support your back better.
Getting the muscles aligned properly lets your spine be properly aligned, and thus the pain disappears:)