After the busyness of the holidays, I began moving house. Remember the doctors warned me not to lift more than 5-10 pounds, right? Well, with no other choice in the matter, I did lift more than I was supposed to. It took me over a month moving very slowly to transfer everything – three kids and eight years of stuff… isn’t it amazing how much we accumulate? :o)
At any rate, starting in February, I noticed I was deteriorating. I took to bed first, thinking I had strained something. A few days later, there wasn’t much change, so I went back to my doctor for a stern lecture and some oral steroids. He referred me back to my surgeon, who reminded me firmly that I should not have done so much. He ordered a new set of x-rays and a CT-Scan. Three rounds of oral steroids and two exams later, I returned to my surgeon, and here are the results:
The fusion is healing. Although we feared I damaged the new bone, it held up and is growing. That was a relief – I can’t even begin to tell you – especially after that horrible surgery. However, it’s come to light that more of my discs have deteriorated. I’m back at square one again with degeneration, stenosis, nerve compression, etc., and that just about broke my heart. L2 and L3 are bulging, and the herniation at L4 has progressed further. It’s a different set of problems now, where I can’t move the toes much in my left leg, and it’s very weak, so “heavy” at times that I have to use my cane. I had to increase my dose of Percocet again (that was such a bummer after I had started weaning off all the medications), and the tears started coming daily again.
I’m sure many of you in the same situation can relate when I say it’s difficult when people don’t understand exactly what you’re going through. You look somewhat normal (unless you’re trying to move, LOL), so they have a tough time sympathizing with the pain you’re in. Friends want to know why you can’t hang out and don’t understand how sitting for more than five minutes at a time is excruciating. Family doesn’t understand why you can’t just pick up a laundry basket and carry it into the bedroom for folding when it only weighs a few pounds, etc. etc. They feel bad but can’t fully comprehend. So this website is a must visit if you’re in a situation like mine. It will help, trust me!
Anyway, so being back to square one means another round of injections. I had my first one last week and will have the second one tomorrow. It hasn’t helped much. I’ve also begun to use the inversion table again (boy, does it hurt!) in the hopes of sucking those bulging discs back in. I'm still doing the exercises daily, and I love the pool! Just dangling there is like heaven. My pain management doc believes that all those discs will have to be fused eventually, and that was a hard blow, but I’m trying hard to stay away from that. Time will tell, I suppose. I’ll be back to the surgeon again next month, so we’ll see if surgery is coming...
How is the writing coming along?
I’ve had so many emails asking about book six. It’s a huge honor to hear of everyone’s excitement for the next release, so please write away! I promise, I’m still planning on having it ready this summer. With everything else going on, it’s been hard to keep up, but I already sent the cover information to my cover artist, I’ve done a read-through, and next will be final edits and beta-readings. I’ve also started working on Cher’s story and the culmination of the Evans series. Book seven might end up being a bit longer, but it will have closure. Whoo hoo! Everyone will make an appearance in that story, and I’m hoping to have an exciting and suspenseful adventure bringing the bad guys to justice. If I can stay out of surgery, I’m aiming to have that ready to go this fall. I usually have my books done a year in advance, so I’ll be cutting it close this time. If that’s the case, I might postpone at the risk of quality. I want the final installment to be perfect! I’m sure you all understand. :o)
Thank you to everyone for keeping in touch. I love hearing from you, and it keeps me motivated to continue working. For those who follow my back progression, I hope you’ll continue to keep positive, no matter how overwhelming it all feels. You are not alone. There are others like us who feel the same way we do. Check out that website and maybe you can find some helpful tips and more hope.