Hi everyone. I'm new, but not. I had another screen name and used to post regularly but had to erase it because of a lawsuit that is now completed- finally! My old user name was fancypants.
I was in a car accident going on 9 years ago. I was told I needed a 3 level cervical fusion at C4-5, C5-6, and C6-7 about 5 years ago but with no insurance I've had no way to pay for it. I have cervical instability, DDD, get migraines, osteoarthritis, muscle spasms all over my neck, shoulders and upper back as well as my lower back along with a bunch of other things.. I have mostly absent reflexes in my arms and loss of sensation in my hands and arms. Within the past year, I've also had L5-S1 degenerating which the doctors think is what is causing my problems with my SI joint. I have lost in a matter of months about half the reflexes in my right leg. I have no current MRIs but the damage can be seen via x-ray, even by me and I have no medical training whatsoever. I'm 36 and can barely work anymore.
For years, my mother has fought me constantly about needing surgery, how much pain I am in, etc. I feel like I've lost a good portion of my life to this fight, I have no husband or kids and with each passing day, that hope grows slimmer and slimmer. My doctor has told me I cannot or should not get pregnant right now, which honestly isn't even an option. It's really hard for me.
Well, about 8 months or so, my 72 year old stepfather got into a car accident. He needs surgery which he is getting within the next few months. Not sure what the date is because I was so upset when I found out that he is getting surgery that I've begged for for years now. He has a lot of the same symptoms I do and he finally listens now when I talk about pain as I do when he talks. When I got upset, my mom said, "it's not about you", which is a common line coming from her. I snapped and told her it's never about me. In fact, she told me the other day they tend to blow off what I say because it's me. Nice, huh? Never mind the constant diminishment of my pain. I'm younger and therefore I don't hurt as badly as he does according to her logic.
Well, I have been crying almost non-stop since yesterday afternoon. My mom has told me that it's more important for him to get the surgery because he is older, that marriage and children are overrated while pushing for my sister to get back together with her ex so she an get married and have kids. Meanwhile, I have no friends and no life. I have no help so I have to do everything on my own. I also get fussed at for not having a full-time job. To complicate matters more, my ortho passed away so I have to start the whole process over again.
Now, my mom has been to maybe 5-7 doctors appointments out of about over 350. They've never offered to help even though the price of one of their cars would cover most of my surgical expense. She attends every single one with him. I know he's her husband, but I can't help but feel like my health and future well-being doesn't matter at all. She was completely anti-surgery with me until he got in his accident. Now it's all about me helping him out and as usual, my pain and well-being are on the back burner. I can't get disability because I need an all new ortho work-up and my MRIs are being denied even though I fit the criteria for a successful appeal (currently on insurance for people who can't get insurance because of pre-existing conditions- pcip.gov. I feel like my life and happiness just doesn't matter at all, as long as my stepdad gets his treatment. Which he has, puts mine to shame. Don't misunderstand me, I don't want him to hurt either. I don't want anyone to feel what I do. However, I can't help but feel like I don't matter. None of my family, who have all been in accidents, waited to receive their treatment more than a year or 2. Like I said, it's been almost 9 years of chronic pain during what should be some of the better years of my life.
I am the only patient advocate that I have. And as of right now, I'm upset and envious that his surgery takes top priority while I suffer daily and am constantly asked to help out the family, no matter the cost to me. I probably sound like a brat, I don't mean to, I'm just so tired of fighting and fighting and getting nowhere. The fact that he is getting taken care of so quickly feels like a slap in the face. I can't go anywhere, I can barely do anything anymore and yet it doesn't matter that I have years and years of life left, hypothetically. I'm sure I'm wrong for being upset that he's getting surgery and I get to keep waiting and waiting, suffering through horrible pain- I'm sure a lot can relate to the waiting part. Am I wrong for being hurt and upset, feeling like my life and happiness doesn't matter to them? Am I a terrible person for wanting to be able to get better and being envious that my stepdad gets to have his surgery so quickly while I've been treated like I'm a big baby even though I need the surgery as well? In all honesty, even if he had no insurance, he'd still be taken care of while I have to wait. I am a horrible person, aren't I? I'm still upset and crying. I'm tired of feeling worthless, useless and utterly alone. I've been living off of hope for years, and i was really hoping that I would get my surgery within the year. Now, that seems impossible. I'm at the end of my rope. Most of my family doesn't listen and I've no one to talk to or turn to.
And yes, I've done massage, chiropractic care (he said I need surgery), physical therapy, tons of trigger points and ESIs, steroids and just about every type of treatment one can imagine with little to no relief. I had a discogram, OUCH! feel like my back and hip problems are a direct result of being made to wait so long that it has caused other problems I did not have before. I'm an emotional mess today. It's been bad, but this is kind of tipping it into me feling worse about myself.
Need 3 level ACDF for 5 years now, SI joint problems also problems with L5-S1, not sure if I need surgery for my back. This just started in January 2013. Too much pain and too young! Been in PM for over 8 years with no surgeries yet.