I've never posted to a board before, but am so thankful for the posts that I've read on this site. I feel I need to introduce myself first, as I have a very blessed and full life-My name is Jay-I'm a 36 year-old husband of 5 years with 2 daughters, ages 4 and 1. I'm the sole provider of the family with a good job. Although my family and job fill up most of my life, I do play bass guitar in a few bands as a hobby.
I've dealt with medical problems in the past, primarily due to a fall of roughly 50 feet when I was 14. Although I fractured my skull in 4 places as well as my pelvis, most of my chronic issues have been related to internal organ damage. Fortunately, I did not have any chronic back/spine problems...until this past fall. As I was undergoing some tests for symptoms that were similar to mono, I lost some sensation to both legs and my feet went cold one morning in Oct. I was instructed to go to the ER, and was eventually diagnosed with 2-3 herniated discs in my neck, myelopathy, and cervical spinal stenosis. Surgery was recommended to relieve the pressure on my spine. We followed up with a "highly recommended" surgeon that confirmed all of this, but said that surgery was not urgent and that some of the spine-related symptoms could be caused by a post viral syndrome or something, as I still had viral symptoms that could not be explained. My wife was so happy as she was worried about the surgery and post-op recovery, having 2 young ones at home. As I continued to go for tests for this "viral syndrome", the non-spine related symptoms began to subside, but I began to have pain/nubmness in my hands and my shoulders, in additional to my feet. As I tried to put all of this together, deal with the increasing pain/numbness, and keep my job, I finally reached a point where the pain was unbearable and I returned to the original ER in mid-dec and opted for the surgery-2 cervical disks removed with 2 bone implants. I was told that the primary goal was to stop any further progression of spinal damage. The secondary goal was pain relief, as the pain/numbness could be caused by the myelopathy. I'm roughly 4 weeks out of surgery and am scared as the pain and numbness do flair up-at various points seemingly throughout my body-in addition to muscle pain/neck/back pain from the surgery (as well as the eventual headache).
I feel like I'm just supposed to return to work in another month or so, regardless of pain-Although I don't know if these symptoms will be permanent, it is hard not to worry about what I need to do-especially when return to work is expected in 4-6 weeks from now. My wife tells me not to worry, take it day by day. My kids have been wonderful, especially given there young ages. I have so many friends and family members-although most are pretty supportive, they rarely visit me, even though I'm in my bedroom for like 22-23/7. I don't think they understand. I even had a "very" close friend of mine send me a text message while I was being admitted to the hospital that stated that "he couldn't stand the rollercoaster of my friendship!". I don't want to judge people by how they were to me during this period, but it is hard not to be upset sometimes. Amazingly, a band that I joined this past summer has waited for my recovery so that we can record the band's second album-which needs to be done by March.
I might be all over the place, and I apologize for the lenght of this post-but I feel so alone, despite the family, friends and resources that I have. My faith and music have kept me going through the pain. I worry about my responsibilities in the future, yet feel guilty of worrying at all, as I know that so many are in worse situations and are less fortunate.