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Doesn't it break your heart?

happyHBmomhhappyHBmom Posts: 2,070
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:43 AM in Chronic Pain
to see people asking when they will get back to normal, or back to their old life, or how to get their doctor to pay attention to what they are saying, when you know that their doctor IS paying attention, and doing all they can, and that the chances are only 50/50 that they are ever going to get back to their old life?

Sometimes I get frustrated (when I'm in an especially bad place, maybe), but sometimes my heart just breaks, because I was there once, waiting for it to get better.


  • because i was reading over a lot of the posts {not just mine} and i was thinking that we deserve a 8l004y meddle for the 5417 we put up with and the way our lives DO change when we hurt out backs and /or we have an operation and i ..like you have noticed that there are so many with none realistic expectations people thinking that they will be climbing everest 2 weeks post surgery ..for the most of us that will never happen and a REPAIR to our backs is about as good as it gets ,,its very down heartening when someone has an operation and they are no better or even worse but we have to remember that WE singed the consent form .not wanting to sound to flippant as i will be having a big operation soon but back surgery is a gamble and one should never undergo surgery without giving serious thought to the possible outcomes .a good thread and it shows that even though we are miles apart our minds are not that far apart .good luck to anyone going through surgery and to all that endure pain every day and night ..try to keep strong
  • I know many here come with minor problems and will get better, and they are fine. But sometimes I can read and see that the person has major problems, and my intuition says they aren't just going to get better, and I can tell that they still think they are.

    When I broke my back, my doctors told me I was going to get better, and I waited for a year and a half before I found out that in fact all that time it was going quite the other direction.

    So you've decided you're going to have the surgery, Straker? My gut says this is the right decision, however it also says you shouldn't be following a random stranger's gut instincts ;)
  • There are so many of us with ongoing issues that we'll be dealing with for years to come, if not for the rest of our lives.

    I'm two years into my spine problems and had some serious issues dealing with the fact that my spine is horrible and I'll never be the same again about a year into it.

    My hubby and I have gotten to the point now that we know I'll probably never be pain-free, won't be able to do a lot of the things that I used to, but I'll keep trying, like everyone else here and learn to live with whatever limitations I'm stuck with.

    Tenacity is something most of us spineys have and I think we need to hold on to it as much as we can. We also need to have realistic expectations and spending time here with fellow spiney can help. There are those that do have one surgery and get back to their old life, but many of us are forever altered not only physically, but psychologically and emotionally.

  • No we will never be pain free.But we will learn to do what we can and cant do. And some time that better then nothing. I rather try to get better then stay as I was.

  • What movie has the quote "The one thing I keep is Hope"? (or something to that effect) That's pretty much how I feel. I know I will always have pain. All I "hope" for is to have that pain be managable.

    But, some people will never understand that and we have to pray that they learn to cope and not become bitter. Once you slide down that slippery slope, you rarely come back.
  • the best you can wish for is a reduction in your pain .for the lucky few there operations will almost cure them and for some that visit us with a minor {but just as important } back problem from a strain or similar .well they will be fine with rest and a few OTC pain meds
  • thankyou for ur post. It is sad. Back pain isn't something i'd wish upon anybody.
  • Hi All,

    What has been stated here is so true. I'm to the point that a 50/50 chance sound wonderful, but I'm a coward I don't take the odds. I guess in something deal with pain for 10 years, and the last 3 years have been 24/7. I have become jaded in ways with aspects of my personal life, but not in trying to help others. There is still remain helpful, and supportive. I'm so grateful to spine health, because without the people I have met here. I would be totally stuck in my little world. They help me in so many ways. They keep me from get to self exsorbed in my own issues, and remembering everyone needs a hand that needs to be held.

    My mom and I have come up with a great philosophy about our lives. It took us awhile. It no longer matters if something doesn't get done on time. That weed, or the laundry didn'y get quite done. Material things can be replaced, but health, people you can't. People are what matters. We say this, do what ya can, when ya can, and how ya can! This works for us. Things don't need to be perfect.

    I'm sorry I went off babbling, and if missed the mark. No one promised me perfect, but I feel I'm dealing well with the hand I've been dealt.

    Bobbi Jo
  • Hi everyone,
    I was told each time before my 3 surgeries that I would be better,and each time was a big disappointment.I've pretty much come to accept the fact I will never be better,but I WILL not let it rule my life.
    There are a lot of things I wish I could do that I used to do,but I have learned to do what I can and like it.
    I do feel for the ones that have high hopes going into surgery,only to be so disappointed when things don't get better.That's where we veterans of pain step in and help them how ever we can,and hope that we can help them learn to deal with things.
    I hope everyone is doing well and dealing with their pain as best they can.Keep smiling and stay positive!!
  • I don't think we ever give up hope, but the thing you can't do is wait for your life to go back to the way it was before. Because, really, what are the chances of that? Maybe it will happen, but for now we have to live the life we have now and take what happiness we can find.

    And we really can't say we can't go on unless someone can fix it. Of course we can. We've made it this far, haven't we? That proves we can survive perfectly well like this.
  • It is true...after my 1st surgery I had expectations to go back to life as usual. When that surgery didn't work, I was overwhelmed but still thought "life can get back to normal".

    It was only after my month of research before my 2nd surgery that I had to adjust my expectations.

    I just posted a "good news" update but have a hard time posting it b/c while I'm doing well, I'm still hurting and I'm still mourning the fact that I will not ever be able to let my guard down in regards to my back.

    I will not let my back rule my life either though at time it does. I walked my dog tonight (I don't walk her after dark b/c I need to be able to see what she might pull after) and was trying to figure out why I was depressed knowing that I'm progressing. Well, it's because I have a new normal. I'm still hopeful I will get stronger and get more 'normal' days but I know for sure that to avoid a set back, I have to stay on guard....keep my core strong, walk, ice, stretch, rest, be careful, etc.

    But I'm learning to be ok with it and learning how to not let life pass me by like I was doing when I was 100%.
  • change is difficult
    change is inconvenient
    but change happens
    you have to accept it and adapt..while you can..because there may come a time ....when you cant ..
  • I have not accepted it and I am still mad as HE!!. I am so mad everytime I go out and brush my horse, but cannot ride him and know I never will. I am so mad when I go out and pull some weeds or plant some flowers or seeds in my gorgeous rock garden and hurt like mad the next day. I am a long, long way from ever getting past this!
    I really don't know how you all do it. I just cannot! I think it's a rip-off, and I don't think it's fair. I look at people all the time that don't want to do anything! My parents for instance, other people I work with, they have no hobbies and do nothing but go home from work and lay in front of the t.v. Why do I get saddled with this crap? I have a life and want to live it and I can't!!! I'll shut up now... LOL...
  • Mouse, it's because bitterness only hurts the person who is bitter. Really. It doesn't serve any purpose in the world.

    When I was a kid I used to say "it's not FAIR!" and my mom would say "life isn't fair." It's so true. There really isn't any fairness in why we got saddled with this and not some awful person. But look around- unfair things are happening every day.

  • Hi All,

    Accepting our situations can be a very long and diufficult journey, but the sooner we can get there the better for our mental health. For some, they never accept their pain, and that can be hard for others to see. Others come to find a way to cope and make the best of things. It can be a long time before we get there.

    As DNice said, there is a new "normal" that we need to adjust to. If we don't it is opening the door to lots of bad feelings, anger, depression, overdoing things, etc.

    This is not an easy path we are on, that is why we spineys need to keep supporting one another. This site and members have been a tremendous help to me and my "journey" to accepting this unplanned and unwanted future.

    Take care everyone,
  • Life is all about learning to accept your new reality. When you were a baby you laid around and ate and pooped. Then your legs developed and you learned to walk. Now you ate, pooped and got into lots of trouble. Then you learned to speak and you ate, pooped, got into trouble and communicated with others.

    All through life we change and adapt to the new reality. Sometimes it gets better or expands and sometimes it shrinks.

    We learn to drive a car and can go lots of places. :)We have kids and find out we don't get to go anywhere anymore :(

    Finding happiness is all about accepting your new reality. Look for the good things in your life, what you can do and focus on that. Find ways to do the things you enjoy.

    Mouse your post really touched me. My daughters riding instructor has had many years of back and knee problems. She was an award winning professional rider for many years until a bad fall. After lots of grumbling she turned her desire to ride into a desire to teach others to ride. She spends her days in the barn with her babies (horses) but only rides once in a while and then only the calmest. Instead of crying about what she can't do she found a way to do what makes her happy.

    We can and should mourn the changes in our lives that take away something we love but then it's time to move along.
  • i don't like my situation and i genuinely feel for us all as i know just what horrors we go through every day {granted some more than others} what i was trying to say is the sooner you can accept your situation the easier it will become for you to cope with it .acceptance of change is an extremely hard thing for anyone to do .
  • what everyone is saying - it just ain't working for me. There is no way in the world I would get one ounce of joy working with other horses OR teaching kids or others to ride - no way. i guess I'm a selfish "B". I WANT to do it. I've been thru a lot of BS in my life and this is just another episode of BS. I am still so mad I could scream. I don't show that to others, I am always polite and kind, but on the inside I could explode with Pi$$ed offness.
  • I raised my black stallion from a baby. He is 18 now. Nothing in the world gives me the joy that riding him does - nothing. Nothing is better than riding him up a piney mountain trail (just me and him) for hours; enjoying the sun, nothing is better than that. I will NEVER do that again - ever. When my neighbor boys shot him at 4 years old, I spent 2 years and over 5 thousand dollars to save him because I love him that much. We have a bond that I have never had with another animal in my life. He is my dream horse, that gorgeous once in a lifetime dream. And it is frickin over!
  • But at least you still have him to brush, hold and love.

    I couldn't ride my little Mercster, but we did everything together and now he's gone. I'd give anything to have him back, even if he wanted to do nothing but just lay by my side.
  • He isn't all that happy about it either. When I go get stuff out of his trailer, he is prancing at the gate, ready too roll. You can see the dissapointment when I don't put a halter on him and load him up. He knows and he isn't pleased either...
  • Does it just hurt too much to try to ride? I find riding really is quite relieving of the spasms (although I haven't been on in a few weeks, and I know exactly what you mean about "pissed off horses"). I think not riding has made things 100x worse (I haven't been able to ride because the blood pressure thing has made me so weak I can hardly even handle my horse).

    Lately I'm thinking I might have to sell my gorgeous show horse for something a little more forgiving, and that does break my heart.
  • I have nerve pain down my butt and leg into my foot all the time. Riding really enhances that quite a bit, and a couple hours afterwards I have to take more pain meds because it is awful. Both of my feet are pretty much numb on the bottoms and my toes. For some reason, riding makes nerve pain shoot thru them pretty bad. I also have the burn in my back and other joints that gets better or worse depending on if it's summer or winter. Riding always brings on the arthritis burn and intensifies it too. Well, I can honestly say, I will never sell my horse. I couldn't bare it. He will have issues for the rest of his life because of being shot anyway. Every spring my son has to scrape all the grass off his pasture (he's on grass hay year around - very pricey) but if he has his head down eating for any length of time, it swells to the point that he cannot breathe and his face is distorted and swollen. He has had all his lymph veins surgically removed from his neck, chest and stomach that were impacted with infection from the gunshot so his head doesn't drain properly. He is on heavy meds in the spring to control it anyway because you can't get rid of every stitch of grass no matter how hard you try until summer hits and it all dries up without water. He gets his carrots, apples, oreo cookies are his favorite, banana cream pie, he loves people food. He will eat fried chicken and burgers if you let him. Quite the card he is. Anyway, nobody else would baby him or put up with his health issues. I would never sell him just because I adore him and vice versa, but also because he'd probably just swell up and die... Once my shoer babysat him at his place for 10 days while I was on a trip. When I went to pick him up, he was standing in a corner with his head down and the saddest horse you've ever seen. I said "Blitzer", he looked up and just about came over that fence to see me. He was so excited - thought he'd been abandoned I'm sure. John told me, well if you ever decide to sell that horse, you might as well put him down. He said he'd never seen anything quite like it, Blitz would hardly eat, was so depressed. He was so excited to see me, he was nickering and pawing and shoved his head in that halter so I could load him in his trailer and take him home.. Oh ya, I love my buddy!
  • Aw, poor guy :( My horse is lucky in that he's young and is still athletic and good at everything, so unlike his mama, he would have no trouble finding a buyer, LOL! I had better hope my hubby doesn't decide to put ME on the market!

    He can be quite a handful on the ground and that's where my back gets aggravated, because of the type of environment we're in I have to take him out every day.

  • One thing I learned from my experience with pain is how precious every moment is without pain.

    I stay more in the moment, let God carry my worry, spend more time enjoying dear friends and family.

    I treat my life like a would a lover, relishing every minute.

    That's what I learned from pain.

    I wish for all my SH friends the hope and certainty of a future without pain.

  • That is part of the problem. He still wants to go! I got on him 2 years ago and he ran for miles, just loves to go, go , go... He runs around the pasture and just when you think he's gonna hit the fence, he stops on a dime and turns and goes off again. He's not the old pasture mate, hang out and do time till ya croak. He's still ready to rumble. Me too - inside...
  • Yeah, that's why I've had my horse (and me) in training. I certainly can't ride like THAT anymore! I have been riding dressage, and really love it. I can only canter short periods, but I can do as much walk and rising trot as I want, and even quite a bit of sitting trot.

    On bad days, I just walk, and it's like being on a big rocking chair. Ahhhhh.

    But it kind of requires a horse who will do that. I have my trainer riding 1-2x a week so Smokey gets his sillies out!

  • Blitz is a pretty smooth ride. I have taught him a lot of voice commands. Even if he wants to go, he won't and does what he's told. I taught him this kind of walk trot, really smooth thing where his leg action is really slow and soft and it is comfortable. I say "walk nice" and he starts doing it, slobbering like crazy cuz he really wants to run, but he behaves very well. Now, if someone else got on him - he'd be gone like a bat oughta hell. He doesn't mind anyone else and I would never let anyone else on him because I'm afraid they would get hurt. He can be a real dickhead quite frankly, but he is always excellent for me. I have taught him so many things, that is why it is so hard to give it all up! I just cry even thinking about it - I imagine myself when I'm going to sleep at night, riding him up a trail thru the pines, it's ridiculous. I used to load him up every sunday morning and drive 30 minutes to the mountains and off we'd go for hours and hours. We also used to jump, he is a jumpin fool and just loves it! That is actually how I originally hurt my back, landed in the saddle wrong and blew 3 discs out at once. Me and my riding buddy Dan were up in the mountains jumping cottonwood trees, which we always did just messing around. I landed wrong and could not move. He had to help me off and I sat on a tree for almost half an hour with tears running down, finally I just had to get back on and ride the 8 miles back to the trailer. That was one brutal trip let me tell you!
  • Yes, obviously I hurt my back riding too, although I didn't land anywhere near the saddle.

    Have you tried a different saddle? I can't ride in just any saddle. I tried going on a trail ride with my daughter once (she wanted to take her friends for her birthday, and we only have 2) and their saddles killed me. Riding in my mom's saddle kills me too. But I have 2 saddles that are heavenly!

    I even ordered a saddle chair thinking that it might be more comfortable, because I can sit on a horse so much longer than I can sit in a chair! It's not the same :(
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