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Now I'm using a cane

SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,427
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:50 AM in Depression and Coping
Good news is that the cane made an immediate impact on some relief while walking. I don't know how it works but I'm thankful.
The bad news is...I need a cane.
It makes me feel a little sad. Never expected 55 to look like this more over feel like this.
Oh, and I'm using Pea Pod now. Thank God for them, but... I didn't even like it when the stores asked, "Need help to your car?"
Also, learned today that my finances will be seriously cut beginning next month. I'm a simple person. Guess I just need to become a little more simple.
Just an overwhelming sadness and wonder of "Why am I here?"So much self focus and self care for chronic pain and other issues.. all this effort for no relief in sight.
Having a bad day, I guess. Doing all the right things though. .. meds, docs, support people, just so difficult.
Thanks for listening. This place really helps.
Spine-Health Moderator
Please read my medical history at: Medical History



  • Savage,

    *HUGZ* I had to start using a cane (moderate neuropathy both legs) about 7 or 8 months ago, and like you, it hurt my pride, I even felt a little embarrassed showing my disability publicly. A member on here actually changed much of my thoughts about using one.

    Like you, I could get out and do things again - that alone brought me some happiness, but her suggestion? Get "pretty canes"... Now I am gathering you are a man, so not a good term, but a cane with a pattern you like. I have yet to have someone be rude to me, or flippant due to me walking with a cane, quite the opposite actually!!! Conversations with strangers have been pleasant and supportive! You're 55? I'm female, 48 here... My *hard* to get use to, permanent handicap parking permit!!!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • I use a cane also and great you're getting use with yours. Although I don't go out daily because of the snow where I live, if I do go somewhere there's my cane. Just like many people may like their stainless steel appliances I've got my stainless steel or aluminum? cane with me at all times. I don't need it in the house but outside it's my buddy.

    I have to make a wrist strap if anyone has any ideas because I'm always dropping my cane and look around for someone to pick it up?

    It's sad when the 75 year old man picks it up but happy there's nice people out thee and in here too and we're here for you and hope you recover from this what you're going through. It's a daily struggle but good we can meet up with people who understand. Praying you feel better. 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
  • Have to agree with Charry... it is bad when an elderly or another, hes to pick up OUR cane for a fubar!!! They key is DO YOU need it to function??? If the answer is YES, than that becomes easy...

    Canes suck no mater how you put it, but how you deal with it is the key. As I mentioned, another member motioned to me, its how YOU deal with it based on your cane, and what is going on.....

    *HUGZ* darling, that all goes well... :)
    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • I'm 35 and have been dealing with severe DDD for over 12 years, it has gotten progressively worse in the last 2 years. I am awaiting disability and now I am getting a wheelchair permit ... I have thought of using a cane as well...does it really help? I have seen the nuerosurgeon, but he wants to put surgery on hold because of my age and the complications. I have done physio etc to no avail. I need some sort of relief so I can at least walk for more than 10 minutes. I do take gabapentins, however they still don't make it so I can walk more than a block. It's frustrating to say the least to have to deal with something like this for so long. I am very embarassed to have to have a wheelchair sign and use a cane. I have been able to hide my disability to a degree anyway, from people. I don't like attention put on me, and now I feel like people will be staring at me all the time.
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,427
    ..to wanting to hide the disability. Sometimes it is best to just be ourselves. I say that to myself as I say it to you.
    It is a treasure to find authenticity in life. Openness has helped others, sometimes those you least expect, or people you don't even know.
    As for the cane, it helps so much! I mentioned to my sister that I didn't know how it worked, but I'm glad. She went on to explain the physio,...what our bodies do..kind of explanation for why the cane helps. I forgot everything she said, but from experience I know, it's a lifesaver.
    Anything can be an addition to our apparrel.
    So what I also tell myself, wear your chair and or cane with a smile..head held up. People do still notice a smile and personality. :)
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • Charry,

    Yes you can fix that cane! Very simple. You need to make a tether for it. Any size strap that you can get your hand through. Like a strap handle from a dog leash or something. Cut the strap off the leash with a little bit of leash to spare. Drill a small hole through the top of the cane shaft near the handle. Now screw the leash into the cane. You can use a screw with some washers to stop the leash from tearing out. Leave some slack. Now slide your hand through the strap and onto your cane. If the cane slips out of your hand for any reason it'll just dangle around your wrist.

    Think of a strap on a camera and such. It is just there to stop you from dropping it. You're making the same thing. You can also use it to hang up your cane and not worry about it slipping and falling.

    PS: When I got my knee scoped back in November. The surgeon had me use a cane for stability for a week or so. I thought it was cool. Knowing I didn't need it permanently probably helps. My wife wanted it taken away from me asap. She said I'm way too much like House (as in Dr. House). So giving me a cane and vicodin was scaring her... :lol:" alt=":lol:" height="20" />

  • First off, Welcome to Spine Health!! As for a cane and how it helps? I think it is because it relieves some of the stress from the deficiency in one of your legs? My big deal when I started using a cane (almost 50, virtually NO gray hair) is now I was showing the public I had a disability. That was emotionally rough, I won't kid you.... Now I am fine with that. It does take an adjustment period for many of us - especially us "Type A" personality types! (G) I've internally decided that I really don't care a rats butt what people I don't know think.

    As to handicap parking, for 3/4 of a year, I had the temporary permits, and one day I go into my GP, and she switched it to permanent. I was cool until my hubby and I parked, put the permit on the rear view, and I saw the expiration date = 4 years later. I lost it! It is hard to realize that things happen in this life, and items that help us - parking closer to the establishment for instance, is a "help", but we see it as disabled, weak etc. I am fine with mine now. If I go to a location that is "in and out", many times I park regular. It is nice (I have to say) to have the approval to park closer when needed. It is NOT a negative.

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Charry,

    Much like Graham is saying. I got some 'eye screws' (screw threads with a loop on the top instead of a Phillips head). You can then put a lanyard strap through it, and too screw the eye screw into the handle of your cane. I did that with one of mine, as the other had a lanyard. Helps bunches!!!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • I too use a cane and I've converted a cell phone holster that I had previously worn on my belt into a cane holster. So when I'm out and about and don't need the cane...standing at a counter waiting to pay for something...I can holster it. When I need it again it's right there, easy to draw from the holster samurai style. The cane also comes in handy for opening and closing doors, pushing elevator buttons, etc.. You can open a door, jam the end of the cane between the door bottom and the floor, and it stays open so you can walk in safely. It also works nicely to gently poke the cats off the kitchen table. I cool cane does help out with the "this sucks" factor.

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  • Hey Charry, I can relate- I was at the store last month and this very sweet lady in her 70's at least, came over and asked if I wanted some help getting my bag into the car. That hurt, my pride, yes... it was very nice of her and I guess it was obvious that I was struggling, but even so... :''(

    Once you get your strap attached (I was going to say on... but... well, nevermind! =)) ) One other thing you can look for is a purse pal I think they call them. It was made to keep our purses off the floor in the restroom or at a restaurant but it helps with other things-

    It's a hook that can go on the edge of a table (has a magnet as well sometimes) and another hook on the end of it (kind of like an "S") it lets you slap one side onto whatever is near by (a table! or a chair, ledge, etc.) and hang the cane off the other end.

    And yes, Savage- the cane comes in handy, you can personalize it yourself with decals and such or buy some with all kinds of prints. While people still notice the cane, now they comment on the way it looks (oooh, pretty!) rather on the fact that I'm using it to begin with.
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