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Pain has forced me to quit my job! :( :( :(

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,607
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:36 AM in Chronic Pain
Remember I was SO excited to be going back to work. I had everything all planned out and thought it was pretty easy and very do-able. NOT! :''(

I only worked 2 days ( well nights as it's the midnight shift )in our small family owned commercial cleaning biz.

The first night was rough but not agony, so I assumed it was just my body adjusting to getting back to being used.

I had almost 2 full days off and was well recovered and the second night was beyond horrible!

We ( me and hubby ) got home and he had to all but carry me in the house. He DID have to undress me and out me in & out of the shower ( we were hoping the warm water would help the spasms ) and get me into bed.

Now almost 24 hrs after I worked last I am still in the almost top level of pain. I took 4 Perks in a period of 4 hrs ( I know I know! ) and they did not help. I also wear a F patch.

I am so so so upset! I really thought since the f patch took some much of my pain away I was ready for this. Instead the F patch took away enough of my pain to live a "new normal" life but my old one is still gone. I know realize it is forever gone.... which is not an easy pill to swallow.

However it is time to put on my big girl pants and face up to what it really is.
I have done this go back to work countless times over the 6 yrs I have been injured and it NEVER works out. This time was much shorter then any of the other times. I usually can hang tough for at least a few weeks. I only made it 2 days with almost 2 full days off in between. /:)

I thankfully DO have many other interests that I AM able to do. I love spending time with my grand kids and tomorrow they are moving up closer to me - for 5 yrs they have been 4 hr drive which we all know is not easy for us. Now they will be 10 to 15 minutes away. <:P<br />
I also love to design and manger web sites and have played with it with some minimal success. I never gave it my all as in the back of my mind I was going back to the cleaning biz.

It's hard & I won't deny it but I am really trying to be grateful for what I DO have.

Part of what makes this hard is I LOOK OK - unless you see me after working lol so when I tell people I was forced to quit my job they are like - oh did you try some Tylenol or some dumb thing like that.

OK I am just rambling now - needed to vent and wanted to update you all who were following my return to work.



  • I'm sorry you're not able to do your job anymore. But I'm glad to hear your family is closer to your and gives you a chance to see your grandchildren. I wish you find a Dr. that would help you. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • =(( =(( At least you gave it a try!

    You have a good head on your shoulders and are thinking clearly about what you do have in your life -- so happy your grandkids will be closer to you and the website thing sounds promising.

    I'm trying to figure out what I can do for a job also. Can't go back to working for developers on 1400 room hotels in charge of furnishings. Try walking 1400 rooms checking out every piece of furniture. Oh, my aching back! Maybe I'll be working for Dunkin Donuts soon (LOL!).

    Anyway, back to you, I am sorry you are in so much pain today -- do you have muscle relaxers to take with pain killers? Does heating pad help? I hear the new infrared ones are great for deep penetatrating heat.

    Keep us posted on how you're doing later today.

    Take care,

  • I agree... U gave it a try at least.
    And now you can try something new, your webbing stuff. And maybe it will help you keep your mind busy. It's hard to give up the past and move forward, but you sound grounded and strong. Good luck to you and hope you adjust. We are all here fir you!
    Hope you feel better as better as you can!
  • So sorry going back to work didn't go well. It's so frustrating, isn't it, to not be able to do the things we want to do. I constantly have to decide what is most important, do it, and leave the rest so I can rest on the couch. I hate that. I want to do whatever I want, and I can't :( I just can't. Hard reality.

    Yes, as to the Tylenol comment, everyone thinks they are a back pain expert. I'm always having people ask me have I tried this, or that, or whatever as if I haven't already thought of that in the six years since my back went bad. Sheesh. I know they mean well, but it kind of makes me feel as if they think that if I just did "XYZ" I'd be fine. Boy, do I wish it was that easy.
  • Yeah, building up to it would have probably helped a bit. Rather than taking on the whole picture of cleaning, mayhaps doing the lighter of the jobs; dusting, emptying the little office trash cans.

    Unless I am totally off-base as to the type of cleaning business. I've pictured in my head cleaning offices and that sort of thing. I'm sorry if I'm wrong.

    BUT, I like the way you think, Beth. You've got that "hmmm.. Can't do this; what CAN I do?" That's MOXY! I like Moxy!

    PLUS you'll be so busy spoiling those granbabies... you won't hardly have time for anything else!

    Do take baby steps, though. Give your body time to build back up before you jump back in the game!

    Take care Beth.. Keep us posted?
  • Omg I agree with you! LOL
    Yes you might be putting your back in shock, and it's freakin out on you!
    I know I have been the worst to do too much too soon. And just have learned the last year after 25 years that I can't do things like that. Now I just don't do anything that I know better not to do!
    Maybe give it a shot again a little easier.
  • So sorry it did not work out for you.
    You have a great attitude by looking at the things you CAN do. Web design sounds great. Not a lot of us have that talent. Go for it girl!! And having those granbabies close is a plus. Enjoy them.
    Sending a hug
    Patsy W :H
  • Thanks Everyone :) You who believe in me are so helpful with making me feel better ( inside ) about this whole situation.

    Yes I did the right way. I built up to it very very slowly over 5 months doing things the right way as I was taught by my PT and even my Dr's. as far as bending getting back up etc etc.
    Even when I did go back I was ONLY working a few hrs a night - after working up to it little by little.

    and I DO mean little by little - like showering myself - washing dishes - cooking a meal, running a sweeper, just little things here and there and then the commercial cleaning end I started out with 15 minutes and added to it.

    So I did do this perfectly correct. My thought is that something else "went wrong" in my back. I will find out when I see my Dr. again.

    He-man ? Seriously - I don't have the capability to even think about being a he-man.

  • i had to quit my job too and i have had to turn down my dream job recently as i am too ill ..i am so p1553d off too!!
  • :H Hi Beth

    I also have been going through the same issues as you. I had to leave my job as a school bus driver for many years because of the pain. Driving a school bus, you cannot take any kind of pain meds. I had my spinal fusion in "05 and returned to work 9 months later. I was in good physical condition all my life.(gym rat) But after a couple of years I had to weigh my love of my job against my future health. I still have two children to care for. My second job was working with Special Needs kids, which were the ones I drove to school. You form a very special bond with them.

    So, I held out to get early retirement plus disability. It's tough financially but I am saving for a new camera which was my first love before I became a mom. I will get back to photography. You have other things you can do plus you will have family close by. I wish I did, mine is two states away and I cannot travel like most of us.

    Your post actually helped me more than you know for I was on the pitty-pot for a year now, Thank you!

    Keep in touch, Donna :-C
  • #:S Hi Michael,

    I'll be honest, I don't know what half of your procedures even are! And quite honestly I hope I never even come close to half of your list. You seem to have a positive outlook, how do you do it?

    I want to thank you for your encouragement as to my future in photography. I hadn't thought of school sports, but I was thinking along the lines of taking school photos of Special Needs children. The people who do District photos on Picture Day use the same approach with the Special Kids. I think I could come up with a way to truly highlight these kids assets without posing them in "normal" light. I have experience working with them and when they see that I have a disability it makes me one of them. Does that sound like something that a parent of a Special child would want? Anyone have any opinions? I know I am off track here, but it helps get me out of my self and gives me something to look forward to, not just how bad will it be next year.

    Thank you both Beth and Michael

    Donna :?
  • with some special need children also. they are beautiful inside and out. I think their parents would love something like that. their true outer beauty needs to be shown in a special way because these are some of the most beautiful and sweetest childern i have ever met. always well mannered and wanting to help others. They are always placed in as normal a setting as possible so that they dont feel different and they have to learn how to communicate and work with others that dont have special needs. I do think that given the opportunity parents would jump at the chance to have their children photographed to enhance their true outer beauty and inner self. You have a great idea i think you just need to put it out there for the parents and see what they think
  • Kyapup Hi :) That is a SUPER GREAT idea! OMG let me tell you how I know. I adopted a special needs little girl ( who sadly has passed away ) but ALL her school pictures were terrible! For lack of better/kinder words she looked Mentally Retard. Her last school pic the guy took his time with her and yes her finger IS in her mouth in the pic and you know what? It shows in the pic who she REALLY is :X

    The other pics were done by people who forced her to look "normal" =;

    I don't think that if you JUST did special needs kids there would be a huge field open enough to depend on for a income but it sure would be a nice gift to their families and word of mouth would travel that you care.

    My EX son in law had a TERRIFIC idea for wedding pics that would have been a HUGE HUGE success, but he was too lazy to follow it through. If you PM me I will share it with you ;)

    I too use to be a school bus driver - not for special needs.

    Michael - Thanks SO much for your SO kind offer. However we really don't want to grow any bigger. We want to keep it small and family run/operated so we can give more personal service.

    Now if you know about the web sites and marketing I will take your offer lol

    I am holding up quite well - especially with my daughter and grand kids being here now. I am over there every day helping as I can.

    I am also getting excited to start a new normal for me :)
  • Beth.

    Well done you…. =D>

    As said, that not knowing is always difficult and you tried with all your might to make this work, in reality perhaps we are all moving towards that notion of not being able to continue as we would like and that in itself is a physiological mountain for anyone to climb every day.

    I am fortunate to be able to continue working having return from years of immobility and know how emotional and what effort that takes, I too continue to question my motives on the basis that my finite capacity limits my function to do anything else and this is a high price to pay for the process of being included. I thought my days of working were over at 36 having been medically retired.

    Although the pain may have forced you to stop some of this is your decision in what you do now and those children will benefit from your time and energy. You have a good attitude that will help in the future and this is just another transition and change, which as chronic pain patients we are doing all the time. You know why you stopped and that is all that should be important, it is understandable that you feel aggrieved at this imposed status and time will help you deal with those who question our integrity without knowledge or any understanding of how things are, or the life we endure behind closed doors. We all keep those things private and should not feel the need to explain ourselves or validate it.

    The good thing is that you are using all your resource to progress and looking for role and aspect of the future with realistic and manageable objectives. Doing activities is one thing maintaining that level of responsibility and pace is more difficulty and although it is important to build the pace that accumulative expectation of energy sometimes never materialises and we are left frustrated and bemused.

    Each stage of our personal journey bring about specific hurdles, in dealing with pain every day we have the inherent over capacity to master these new challenges with some support and specific tweaking, you know what you are doing and where you are going, the new you, we can all aspire to do this.

    Take care and good luck.


  • :H

    I had to stop working at a job I loved because of the pain. :''( I was going to retire in another three years but was not able to handle it that long. I'm 63 now and retired but I miss working. I'm well enough to work but it's difficult to find jobs that I'm able to do.

    Evelyn :H
    Had PLIF in 2008 and a Laminectomy. One level fusion, L4-L5.
  • to what you are going through. It sounds like you have a great attitude about it and that really is 1/2 the battle.
  • I've been exercising 4 times pr week to keep muscles strong and work. At first i was proud to overcome my pain, but after a year I realized i am just being stupid because my degenerating disks c4 c5 c6 are only getting worse. It is wise to find other work. The changing faze seems to be the hardest part of it all, not knowing what will happen. I am new to this life of chronic pain, and its worse each week because i insist on working through it like a tough girl. I'm beginning to see the light. You kept going until you couldn't even walk in the house. I can see me doing that. I lose sleep from pain. I can't really remember the last bout of time that I was pain free.... WOW!....I'm going to learn from you and definitely make life changes.
    Simplicity and balance are key
  • Years ago I worked as a professional photographer - way back when you had to use a light metre. If kids feel comfortable with you that's half the battle. Also when photographing children you need to get down to the same level as them which might be a bit hard with your back. Carrying camera equipment can be pretty heavy. I had to leave work too because of the pain and thought I might go back to photography. I worked for about 5 years professionally and then got a bit over it. Weddings especially but it is good money and the cameras are much easier now.

    I bought the lightest professional SLR camera I could buy. The trouble is that you have to use your arms and they have to be steady - it's too heavy carrying a tripod. So I found even carrying the really light camera and holding it up to shoot pictures was too much for me.

    There are ways around it - you could get the kids on stools but you usually need to kneel down with kids or sometimes lie down when you shoot them. If your back is not as bad as mine you might get away with it.

    I did a lot of shots and I really enjoyed getting back into it. But it really messed with my back. I have thoracic pain so I shouldn't lift my arms above my shoulders and when you're into it you just kinda do it and end up in pain. Just because it didn't work for me doesn't mean it wouldn't work for you. There is probably a lot of work for photos of special kids - just make sure you buy a camera that is easy to use and very light, as it's not only the camera you have to carry but all the lenses and flashes as well.

    Go into shops and feel the weight of the cameras with all the lenses and the camera bag. It gets very heavy after a while. Sorry to put a dampener on it but just see if you can carry a camera for a couple of hours - borrow one and walk around with it to see if it causes pain.

    Hope it doesn't but I thought I would be able to do it easily and found after a couple of hours I had to get someone else to carry the camera for me. Not great.

    But give it a try - your injury is probably different to mine. Hope it works for you, just flagging what happened with me so you don't go into it blindly and spend a lot of money before you know if your back can take it.

  • as some of you know i am a special ed-rsp teacher at a high school and have been teaching for 25 years. i had 4 back surgeries and the first one was 12 years ago. i had them as close to the summer so i would not miss work and after the last one, i have problems walking standing and getting dressed. i have never thought of quitting work or going on disability. i still go to work even with bad pain. i get little to no support from administrators or some teachers. i will retire after this year since i am 66 to be 67 next may. the thought of not working has never entered my mind. i have kids in wheel chairs who are in pain who manage to go to school to get a diploma. i had one girl who i home taught who had diabetis and who eventually died due to complications. i don't understand people who quit work due to pain. i have been under the care of a pain dr for 12 years but still manage to work. working keeps me grounded and better than sitting at home watching tv. also next year after i retire, i plan to substitute to keep busy and to keep in education. i have had pain so bad, i had to get out of the car off the freeway to rest for a minute but still go on to work. i worked with a guy with back issues also, herniated disc and surgery and he managed to work also. i guess one could say that pain affects people differently, but not me. if kids in wheel chairs in pain can go to school, i feel i can also teach and go to work. so if you don't like this post then ignore it and go on. this is just my personal feelings
    take care
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • airborne72airborne72 Posts: 245
    edited 08/01/2013 - 12:51 PM

    I appreciate your work tenacity and contribution to the gross national product; however, in this post your evaluation of others is a bit skewed. I, too, am a very determined person who values work/travail as an admirable trait. Society would not continue if the human element did not work.

    BUT, I disagree with much in this post. To begin with, everyone has a different pain threshold. Some can calmly sit through a dental procedure without any novacaine, while others faint at the sight of blood. We are all different in that regard. Likewise, each of us has a different work ethic. Some modeled their's after their relatives while others developed their own independently. Individual work ethic combined with individual pain threshold results in an almost infinite number of outcomes regarding how an individual may seek relief (continue to work but moan and groan, temporary absence from work, medical intervention, or disability if the previous three don't resolve the issue).

    The duration of that absence depends upon several factors. One is the socio/economic conditions in which that individual operates (lives). Many people will emulate their peers and take short or long term disability. Some are "doomed" to live within their means based upon where they live. Not everyone lives in California, which has the 7th largest economy in the world. Therefore, they may not have any work/medical/short term disability opportunities available. Try as hard as they can, they can't create these opportunities in sufficient time to meet their financial needs.

    Your statement about sitting at home and watching TV is a presumptive judgement. The same prejudicial, and inappropriate, statement could be made about public school teachers who only work 9 months of the year. I taught in a public high school for three years, so I often ruffle when someone makes this statement. But it is all about perceptions. Labeling someone who can't work because of pain as a "TV malingerer" is unfounded.

    In addition, if stopping along the side of the freeway to exit your car and stretch prior to getting to work is your example of "acute pain" and its debiliating effects, then you need to reassess. Others are in much worse condition, yet continue to pursue their occupation. That example is trivial and pales in comparison to many others. Which goes back to the point I made earlier. Each of us are different, with unique pain thresholds, etc.

    Lastly, my question to you is why stop working at 67? You see, life is relative to each of us. Each needs to give according to their means.

  • ji
    for being a teacher it is amazing that you put words in my mouth. i said i would not sit home and watch tv. i did not mention others. i made a personal statement so how did you make this my opinions about others? so please stop putting words and statements into my mouth that are not there. don't let your feelings judge your opinions. once again for the record i said i would not sit home watching tv, not johnny or barbara or ralph or betty or anyone else except me. next time please read carefully before stating things that i did not say.
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • LividusLLividus Posts: 1
    edited 08/01/2013 - 9:53 PM
    I have had a terrible six years since falling off of a roof and having a brain injury. I have chronic back pain, but I feel pain everywhere. Sometimes I just want to die so I don't hurt anymore- I am not saying I think of hurting myself, just wishing it could be over. I used to be in the Army and I was in amazing shape. I could run six fast miles three days a week, ruck march 12-20 miles, and lift weights every day. I used to easily carry huge french doors by myself up stairs when I worked for my father after getting out of the Army. Then one day, it was all over. I work now, but I shouldn't. I have two amazing kids who are super-talented competitive athletes-which costs me as much as another house and car payment, so I can't quit working. I try every trick in the book to relieve my pain, but nothing works. I took oxycodone for the first four years, and fought through hell getting off of them. I quit them cold turkey. I have read for countless hours at night trying to find a reason why I can't stop feeling this pain, but there seems to be no answer out there. I have always thought that we all must suffer some type of tragedy(s) in life, and everyone's tragedy is different. My tragedy is a teeth-grinding pain from the fall. I imagine this pain like climbing a huge cliff that seems to go up forever, with no rest, no easy way down, and a hard path up. Needed to put to words a pain most people can't understand. When I talk to my wife about pain she tries to relate, but I know she doesn't understand. I am pretty much broken at 33.
  • i appreciate what some of you have said and you get my point. there seems to be a gut level reaction of some to place thoughts and words out of context. over the years i have found it absolutely amazing how people read things into posts and not get the point. i have now gotten some hate mail on this subject, called names, said i lie about my pain and on and on. i just ignore them, show them to my wife and we have a good laugh at these people. all i can say is thank god football season is just around the corner.
    take care and thanks to those who get the point
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • paininohioppaininohio Posts: 240
    edited 08/02/2013 - 7:36 AM
    Jon, being a student, so-to-speak, of the written word, and knowing the differences in writing techniques and what not and after reading most of your posts, I like to think I understand your particular writing style, so in saying that, I understood your point completely.

    You weren't saying that everyone should be able to work, no matter what, i think you were saying that some people can still work and some can't. I too am one of those people, partly because I'm a workaholic and I'd go totally nuts, but that's just me, just like you said you can still work but that's just you.
  • terror8396tterror8396 Posts: 1,832
    edited 08/02/2013 - 8:54 AM
    i come from the lazy style of writing, capitals, and some structure, but i believe my points a crystal clear at least to those who can read and not put what they think into my posts. if i wrote that the sky is blue, some will read into it that i hate blue and the sky is really red. it is amazing that people will read things into what i said. amazing. yes i am in total agreement with you. i work because i want to and if a girl in a wheelchair with scoliosis and cerebral palsy can go to school to get a diploma, i can to. but one of the posters apparently did not or want to understand and he/she accused me of all sorts of things. it looks like some posts were deleted so what they said is not posted.
    go bucks and go spartans, one more month before football.
    jon the gipper
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • oh a post script
    the girl in the wheel chair with scoliosis and cerebral palsy plans on walking across the stage this year at graduation. she is practicing and using a walker. so like i said, it she can come to school and get a diploma and walk across the stage, i can also show up and work. she is not my motivator but another reason to work plus i enjoy teaching. one poster questioned why i would retire at 67? what a question, most jobs require the age of 65. so i guess according to them that i should keep working until the age of 80 or older using their logic.
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • kamgramkkamgram Posts: 483
    edited 08/02/2013 - 5:02 PM
    I unfortunately had no choice in working. I worked through many yrs of back pain...many as a c na lifting patients and would go home crying in pain. After yrs of this abuse to my body and 3 back surgeries since 2008 and a fusion scheduled for this Dec I realize all I did was ruin my back by being stubborn. I decided to go back to school and then went to work in a doctor's office where I thought it would be easier on my back but you see the damage was already done. In Jan. 2012 I started having severe mid back and chest pain and on May 24 I had thoracic microdiscectomy that went bad. I was supposed to return to work on July 5th and could not even walk yet. On July 10th I received termination papers in mail and that was the end of my job.

    I had no long term or short term disability and was not covered by FMLA so I was screwed. I went for numerous blocks and rfa which did not help. I had MRI which showed numerous problems in cervical and lumbar spine and scar tissue in thoracic. Lumbar had 3 surgeries on L 4-5 and severe damage down to S1 thus the fusion coming from L3 to S1.

    Then on November 2012 I fell on knees and had severe pain in left knee and was sent to ortho who performed microfracture surgery surgery in Jan of this yr. And have never had such pain. Had another MRI awhile back and severe arthritis is already back so having knee replacement on Aug 16 then fusion in Dec. Oh and when numbness gets severe enough I will have to have ulnar nerve decompression surgery on both elbows. I wear braces from wrists to bicep to bed each night on both arms to keep me from bending more than 30° angle.

    I just wanted to show with this very long post that everyone is different and although I loved my job and doctor I could not go back nor will I be able to work for some time. My Neurosurgeon said it was time to throw in the towel and file for disability which I still haven't heard anything from. I think if anyone is able to work it is great to stay occupied but some don't have a choice. Jon I know I have been guilty of flying off the handle at your posts and I am trying to understand that you are speaking for yourself but perhaps you could try not to be quite so opinionated of others and I will understand you are speaking about yourself and not others. I love this forum and just want peace and encouragement for our new members.

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