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What do you do when everything is just piling up around you?

I am sure that I am depressed and I am on meds and in counseling. I have a p[revious cervical fusion (c2-6), currently 7 is herniated, have degenerative disc disease, myelopathy, spodol., basically, I am a mess. My husband works nights, and we have 5 young children. Because of a seizure episode, I am un able to drive. The house is a mess, husband is mad that it is a mess,but rarely makes any attempt to help. We have a son who is special needs and is going through a difficult time right now. Husband sleeps all day, picks up the kids from school then sleeps until he goes to work at 9:30 pm. I don't even know where to begin to explain how I feel. I am in chroinic pain everyday and I know he cannot really understand how I feel. I feel like I am sinking deeper into responsibilities that for either emotional reasons orn health reasons I cannot complete. I am so sad and at a loss. I feel like I am swimming upstream. Things just are not getting done fast enough. And if I push myself to get more done around the house, the next three days will be spent in pain. Then I can't do anmything and I am back at square one. What is my best game plan in getting my life back? Thanks for listening, I am hopeing you are all having pain free days:)


  • Jodi,

    Wow I am so impressed at how you juggle your life. And I love the comment at the end about what you can do. You still have your sense of humor and that is so important. I don't have kids and sometimes wonder how I will ever make it thru the day getting things done and working as well. Sometimes I have to back off and just do what I can. I have 5 cats and they don't really care what the house looks like (and they contribute greatly to how much cat hair there is!!). I have a boyfriend who sometimes helps but not enough as I'd like. But I don't complain. I have had 3 fusions in 4 years (fused L1 to S1) and the most recent was march and I am having my toughest recovery yet. I am on pain killers and muscle relaxants and anti depresants (was on them before the back surgeries but need to be on them for sure now!!). Is there anyone that can help you, any community services or neighbors or friends?? Sometimes its hard to ask for help but sometimes its the only way we can survive.


    Spinal stenosis, spondolysis, spondolythesis, L4/L5 laminectomy, L4/L5 360 fusion with instrumentation, L1 to L5 fusion with instrumentation and bone graft from hip, L1/S1 fusion with replacement disc put in and a nice bolt from my spine to my pelvis; PT, accupuncture, prolotherapy, many cortisone injections, 4 rhizotomies. Currently on tramadol.
    L4/L5 laminectomy, L4/L5 360 fusion with instrumentation, L1 to L5 fusion, L5/S1 fusion w/ disc replacement, left and right SI joints fused.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,865
    It is almost impossible to continue to live a life where everything seems to be empty and there is nothing to refill your cup.

    The first place I would look towards is establishing some communications with your husband so that he better understands your medical condition.

    This is a pretty common problem that we see with so many members. Its a combination of one spouse not understanding the other's problems and the other spouse at times making it more than it is.

    Effective two way communications is probably the best way to start making things easier for your life. Of course that is easier said then done. In order for that to happen, you need two willing people. When that does not exist, professional help may be one of the better solutions.

    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Jodi, It is my opinion that you need both a strong support system and a plan-but I'm certain that you already know this and are probably wondering how to go about getting there.

    When everything feels like it is piling up around me, I get a panic feeling inside and I reach out to someone. I hope you don't make the same mistakes that I did when my boys were younger--I could never ask for help and did everything on my own, even with casts & rods sticking out of me (against Drs orders). I was a perfectionist and even if I could not keep things perfect, I still did what needed done and was too proud to ask for help.

    You are a pain patient with five little ones, so you need and deserve the help. I don't know if you qualify for any socail services or if there are any type of programs that can help you (if you don't have the family and/or friends), but if I were you I would be hitting the phone book, classifieds, etc.. , sometimes there are maid services that have reasonable rates. Even if it seems too big right now, a starting point can help get you motivated and might jump start in getting you out of the depression too. Please don't let it get you down (the house, the mess). Just do something, even if it's a small thing on a painful day when you can't do much, and don't be too hard on yourself.. as long as you are trying it can get better. It will take some time, but that's ok too.

    I wish I had more time or lived close by and could help..I love organizing, making lists and things like that, which can be good starting points. But if you are feeling like things are piling up and it is in your budget, even if only once per month you could hire a maid service. It's not always as expensive as you might think.
  • I found a support group that usually helps seniors and disabled adults and get a cleaning lady for $81. for 2x cleaning every other week and maybe you could find homecare or a student who could help with the cleaning.

    I feel much better when the house is swept and she folds clothes and washes the floors. Please see your Dr. for a pain med assessment and see if he can help.

    Even doing 15 minutes a day organizing can help especially if the children could help in any way. It would be nice to get a break and go out of the house a little bit if you can to get some fresh air. I hope you can take it one day at a time and I love your signature but sure you're not able to do that everyday. 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
  • I just had my surgery on July 12, 2011 and am at a point where I am not coping well. I am use to being in charge and being able to help myself. Because I have been limited on what I can do for several months since my accident, I have had to find ways to do everything in little bits and pieces. Don't know if you have every heard of it but "Flylady" is a great website that gives you lots of tips, schedules, etc etc etc on how to maintain a organized and clean house, one bit at a time. I am getting ready to re-start the program myself since I have fallen off the wagon and my stacks are starting to pile up again. I hope you start to feel better soon and that your piles get smaller :)
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,476
    You really have a lot on your plate...
    All the above reponses sound so helpful and I hope you give them serious thought.
    Taking care of yourself..so important..like you need the "oxygen mask" on before you help others.

    Counseling..someone to clean...huge..so important.
    You mentioned a child with special needs. You are probably eligile for Respite care...through the school system. It's a great benefit..even if you just get out of your house to sit around someone else's house for awhile. Just so it's peaceful.. :)

    Sometimes we think we can't take a break when really we can't be our best without it.

    Take care!
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • HI,
    Well, you certainly have a right to be upset, and while in pain, that's not good.... I would try to speak to your husband, or schedule HIM an appt. with your dr., who you would speak with. to tell him of the lack of support, and to explain to him what is going on with you and why you cannot do this alone. That may help, may not..you know how the guys can be sometimes.. And 5 kids!! You mentioned he picks them up from school, so they are old enough to help mommy until she feels better! No one is ever too young to learn to pick up and maybe carry the laundry to the washer. They can then put it in the dryer and Mommy will be so happy! Dishes in the sink? Again, "Mommy would really appreciate it, if you could do 1/2 of them for me." I don't mean to overwhelm them, but have you told the older ones what is going on and why you need their help?
    Your sense of humor is great!!! Don't lose that, cause as you know already, you need it! I love the baby on the floor, and the cat eating the Cheerios - see how things work out even in a weird way??
    Keep us posted on how you're doing...if you lived near me, I'd help you out as much as I could. You don't happen to live near Albany, NY, do ya?? :)
    So, keep your chin up, and hang in there. People have given you some good suggestions, so maybe one of them will work for you! Feel better Mommy!!
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