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I'm new to this forum. I see that people sometimes comment that they are long past needing sympathy from others. I feel like that as well. However,lately I wish I had some empathy. Maybe it's that piece of someone in chronic pain to want people to know how you feel. It's not tangible, they cannot see your pain. Many people doubt it. I was in a servere accident almost 7 yrs ago. I fell from a tree stand,thanks to some bees, and fractured my spine, as well as other less severe injuries. I had a spinal fusionS10-L1. At first everyone rallied around me. Their goal was to help me get «better». When that never happened, people either smothered me as though I was sick or stopped talking to me all together. I had a 2nd spinal fusion L4-S1. After this surgery, I couldn't work, the pain was chronic and I needed morphine daily, any little thing caused a flare up. I always say my accident is the gift that keeps on giving. Surgeries, injections, Drs visits, MRIs. I had to ask some people not to visit me every single week, as if I'm ill. I wanted to be seen as me again, not the girl with back problems. The past yr the pain has progressed. My pain is worse, activity was low. I tried every pt, drug, exercise. The winter bums you out too. Lately I just feel isolated. When people say...how are you...they don't want to hear...well I didn't sleep at all, I can barely move today. They want you to say I'm fine. When I have an injection...they ask me each day...are you better?...did it work? That's the few people who even ask about it anymore. So I'm reaching out to others. You 'll understand and empathize. You have good days and bad days. I think things have gotten harder over the years. How do you do it? Most of the time I get up each day ad put one foot in front of another. I used to be so optimistic. I'm not sad...I'm just blah.
Fall in 2007- broken spine. Spinal fusion T10-L1. 2nd fusion L4-S1.failed back syndrome


  • Hang in there, I know it seems easier said then done. There are days i just lie in bed all day from the depression that follows the pain. It would be so much easier if our bodies turned a color if we are in pain, so people can see the pain. Its very hard for them to understand that one day the pain is bearable and the next day you can barely move.
  • sandisandi Posts: 6,343
    edited 04/17/2014 - 6:46 AM
    Almost allof us have either been there, or will be there in just feeling isolated and frustrated by the lack of empathy and understanding. The reality of living with a chronic condition is that while most people think that they understand what spine pain feels like, their experiences are limited to what they, themselves have experienced.....most of the population have pulled a muscle in their backs or strained their backs at one time or another, but for them to grasp the scope of what we live with each day is difficult without a reference to guide them.
    On the flip side of that, no one wants to listen to us complain , when we are asked . It is frustrating for those who love and care for us when we don't get "better" or back to how we were prior to surgery, and at times they feel helpless to "do" anything to help us get "better."
  • To your post a lot. I never know what to say when people ask how are you, or better yet, what have you been doing. One day I might actually answer honestly: I'm not up to anything. I had to quit my job, and now I just sit at home, day after day. The pain is so bad sometimes I want to die. No, the doctors don't know anything. No other treatment options left. Then I might ask how they are doing.
    I need to have something to do, some sort of hope. Maybe that would help you. People in our lives want us to get better so bad, so seeing us in pain, or talking about it honestly is hard. You can talk honestly here, I've finally found people that 'get' it. And they care, but don't get hurt by talking honestly.
    2000- spinal fusion, complete spine due to scoliosis
    2012- pain began, started treatment for chronic pain
    2013- install of pain pump, procedures to address complications
    2014-blood patch, spinal fluid leak
  • when someone ask how i am i make a joke of it. i say like a baby treats a diaper then i laugh and walk away. i dont talk about it or complain at home or work. like i said if someone ask i will make light of it and turn it into a joke. hopefully the get the joke but a lot of people have basically little or no sense of humor. people who cant laugh at life or things i tend not to hang around. all of my friends have a sense of humor and we laugh a lot. my favorite things to do with the wife is to go to comedy shows. we even drove 300 miles to see a show in reno last year. a gift for the ole' ball and chains birthday. we had a great time and laughed all night i try not to crack up during love making because that might be too far with the ole humor
    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.
  • All of the kind words. I haven't been feeling well and it makes me cranky. So I feel like I'm more sensitive. It helps me so much to know that other people can relate. Since my last fusion I couldn't return to work either, after 3 yrs of this day after day I feel myself sliding over to the unhappy side. I'm generally glass half full girl. So many people lean on me all of the time, and I want to be there for them but at the end of the day, who is there for me? My husband is wonderful but he works long hours, and does almost everything around the house. I share with him most of the time but like we all said- he just doesn't understand. And when he's tired or having a bad day I keep my issues inside. And because of that, I've pulled away from people too. Family is almost worse. They all try and fix me or tell me how they know someone who is worse off, so buck up. So I asked my doctors, physical therapists for suggestions of support groups. I was so surprised at the lack of resources in my area. Of course they have a seminar I can pay for. That is how I found myself looking online. I'm trying to find happy(ish) positive (ish) me again.
    Fall in 2007- broken spine. Spinal fusion T10-L1. 2nd fusion L4-S1.failed back syndrome
  • Just a suggestion but what about thinking about starting a CP support group of your own? Most hospitals allow them to meet in a room a couple of times a month, at no charge, and they list them in local papers and hospital newsletters. If you are feeling the need for some real life support, I am sure that there are others who are as well.
    Plus the added benefit is that it might help you to have something you can feel good about that belongs to you.......
  • That is a great idea. I have a lot on my plate right now. ( other than just my health- like it's not enough lol) But I'm definitely going to explore this idea.
    Fall in 2007- broken spine. Spinal fusion T10-L1. 2nd fusion L4-S1.failed back syndrome
  • have put a comment on your post ..we all feel like you do at some or all the time .you are correct that pain is invisible and some may even doubt your pain .I can totally understand the isolation too ..all of my so called friends have disappeared .I have been through a divorce [mainly due to my ill health] .I am 17 years in pain and I have had 3 operations the worst was the ALIF fusion 2 years ago .my life has been hell since then and it was not much better from the second operation back in 2007 .day after day its the same old thing pain and isolation .there are some fantastic kind people on here and between us we have hundreds of years experience of intractable pain .dealing with it ..it very difficult ..well healthy people don't want to be around ill people .I won't patronise you .all I can say is I hope to day is better than yesterday !! .just try to stay strong ,,I know its very difficult .especially when you look ;;normal ..to others but inside you're screaming in pain
    1997 laminectomy
    2007 repeat laminectomy and discectomy L4/L5
    2011 ALIF {L4/L5/S1}
    2012 ? bowel problems .still under investigation
    2014 bladder operation may 19th 2014
  • After not being able to work for over a year, and dealing with seemingly never ending, unpredictable chronic pain, I am struggling......yesterday was my lowest point ever, and here are two quotes from my husband (who is usually the most supportive):
    1. How do you run out of time (doing errands), it's not like you work.
    2. You're not the only one suffering. Me and the kids suffer right along with you.
    My friends have basically abandoned me, except for on Facebook.
    I hope you have a good day, I'm going to try....
    April 2011 C1-C2 Fusion (Brooks wiring)
    January 2012 C1-C2 Revision Fusion (Harms Technique)
    2010 - current: Trigger Point Injections, Epidural Injections, Bilateral C2-C3 Radiofrequency Ablations
  • Wonderful to have found some people that I can relate to and be there for as well. This winter was my lowest time. I'm sure the weather didn't help. ( I live in Wisconsin) And we were building a house. Fighting for social security disability. And I was in the most pain I've ever been in. I have a loving, supportive family but I was drowning. I would even cry at the doctor's office. Slowly I'm pulling out of the darkness. I read a book about being present, enjoying every blessing in life. I just wish I could work, or find something that I loved to do again. I used to be an avid runner, any kind of exercise really. I also loved to garden. I can do each of those things in a much much smaller way, sometimes. It's funny what you said achyneck, about running attends. My husband says...how can you be so busy if you don't work? Well...when you lay down after every little thing, and everything takes you 10x longer, you are busy. I'm sorry about your friends. Both you and Tony. It hurts, I know. Especially when you do talk to them and they talk about all of the fun things that you would love to do, if you could. You always wish that they would understand how lonely you are. How you are still you inside. Sorry this place makes me want to spill my guts :) I wish you all a good day too.
    Fall in 2007- broken spine. Spinal fusion T10-L1. 2nd fusion L4-S1.failed back syndrome
  • Spill your guts on here- it's what it is for. I do it all the time :) Something I haven't said on here before that is I feel jealous of my friends. I hate the fact that they can go out, do whatever, and not even think about it. I hate that they can bend down without a second thought, sit in any chair, and that they can go for car rides or drive as long and far as they want. I'm not angry with any of my friends, but I am jealous. I have tried to turn this around on myself (I didn't recognize that I was lucky when I could do these things, why would they?) but sometimes I still have jealous thoughts. And that's okay- I am going to have negative thoughts, so will you. I try to also think of who would be jealous of me- for example, what do I have that others would be jealous of me for? What do I have that I'm not recognizing?
    2000- spinal fusion, complete spine due to scoliosis
    2012- pain began, started treatment for chronic pain
    2013- install of pain pump, procedures to address complications
    2014-blood patch, spinal fluid leak
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    I felt something had to give , something to give me some sort of unconventional love who didnt care about my back or neck, This might seem strange but I became a dog rescuer. Not all dogs just small senior that would rather spend the day with you cuddling. These dogs have brought so much joy to my life. I even ended up adopted my first foster when his adoption didnt work out. It is strange he knows when my days are very bad and will do his best to comfort me.If there is one thing I can always count on is him.
  • The old ball and chain may hit you upside the head if you laugh during lovemaking.

    I am also surprised about the lack of support groups especially with all the pain patients we see when we go in for nerve blocks or just to see the doctor. I may look into starting a group in Memphis if i can find the time.
    laminectomy c4/c5 2008, ACDF c4-c7 Jan 20 2014 sched
  • TarenTTaren Posts: 525
    edited 04/24/2014 - 5:48 PM
    Susan, I take my hat off to you for rescuing those precious lil dogs!! It is not strange at all that he knows when you are having a bad day & comforts you. I had a dog that did the same thing, when I was sick he was stuck to my side, where I went he went, If I had to lay down he would come lay down beside me. They do know, somehow they know. I have been thinking a lot about getting another lil dog, just want to make sure that before I do that I will be able to walk him as much as he needs to be walked. My neighbor got a Pomeranian puppy a few weeks ago, he looks like a little bear cub--just plain adorable. My daughter has a chi-pom, I steal her every chance I get, I just love that lil dog!! I definitely think I'm going to have to get another baby.
  • Jon, I'm with Dave, THAT is not the best time for you to be laughing...NO NO NO!! Hey Dave, maybe she's laughing too ;-)
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    Most older dogs do like to go for walks but from what Ive learned is it isnt very far. i have had one just lay down in the middle of the walk and had to carry him home, I am lucky that I have a dog park a few blocks from the house so when my 2 are feeling the need to get out, I load them in the car and turn them loose. They have a blast. You can make it work. Please rescue before buying from a pet shop
  • what good people are on this site. As everybody says, we all have days better or worse than others. It is also very true that people cannot truly understand, no matter how well meaning, how chronic pain affects us and how b....... bad it hurts.
    I honestly can truly say that this site has saved my sanity so many times. To be able to relate to people like Jon, Tony(UK) Sandi and many others helps in so many ways on good days, and on not- so- good days.
    Best wishes to everyone.
  • Lol, I have had them get lazy during a walk too, but can remember one ever just giving up and lay down refusing to walk...I hope he was a small dog!! Yes, definitely, a rescue dog, my last one was a rescue dog. He had been neglected by his owner and was stuck in a situation where he was just one of the many many dogs these people had. They had too many to give attention to any particular dog. I remember the very second I saw him, I knew he was for me and I for him. Blake and I were inseparable.

    It broke my heart when I had to give him up, it still does....Due to PCS'ing (Permanent change of station-Airforce) I could not take him with me--the day I had to hand him over was rough, it's still not too easy to think about. My cousin took him and he's doing really well. I miss him (and have thought of taking him back) but he's happy, he has 2 kids to play with & 2 other little dogs to keep him company, I can't bring myself to take him away from his current happiness, I worry that he would miss them all and get bored with me cuz I can't be as active as 2 kids playing with him and I don't have any other dogs to keep him company. Sooo, I just keep a picture on my coffee table of me and my lil Blakey boy----oh dear, I'm gonna need a Kleenex here!!!

    But, yes, Susan, I agree--rescue dogs are the way to go. I want another one now, can ya tell? :-(
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    Im so sorry that you had to give him up but just remember he is in a happy, well cared for home. So many dogs as we know are not. You will know when it is time for another dog. I always said my first foster found me. We were meant to be together. When he went to his forever home I missed him like crazy. The organization I work for told me the first foster will always be the hardest to give up, I knew in my heart that he belonged to me. I was the happiest person alive when the person that adopted him emailed me and asked if I wanted him back it just wasnt working out. So IMO he was meant to be with me. He came back home right after my mothers death. The adopter didnt want to put him back into the system, legally he was suppose to go back to rescue but she felt I was the only one she would feel comfortable giving him to because she knew how heartbroken i was when he left. Yes I broke the rules with the organization but this was a dog that had been in the system for years. He never worked out when he was adopted out. I guess he was just waiting on me. Eventually they will find out I have him and will want a 375.00 fee but the previous owner said she would pay it just for the her peace of mind knowing he was home where he should be. I love this dog and cannot for the life of me figure out why his adoptions never worked out. Ive always said he was waiting for me.
  • It's lovely reading your stories guys. We adopted 2 tiny, scrawny little kittens from Californis last year. My friend fosters & like you they just chose us. Every weekend they were taken to the adoption center & no-one wanted them. In the end I just couldn't get on the plane home without them..I'm a rule breaker too! ;-)

    There are so many wonderful animals who have been neglected or mistreated if you have room in your home & heart you can find the perfect pet who's waiting for you. Nothing beats the company of an adoring little furry friend, particularly on those long nights when pain is keeping us from sleep. You know the 'Beast' hates our furry friends! ;-)
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • I started crying reading the thoughts you shared. In your avatar you're holding a little child and I wondered how does anyone dealing with chronic pain take care of children or work? What a sad situation to be young and have so much going on but not be able to fully enjoy everything.

    I've read several articles on other sites about people with chronic pain committing suicide. That, too, is immeasurably tragic and I find myself wondering why on earth pain cannot be managed more effectively? What is it with our bodies that makes pain management easy enough for some people and totally impossible for others?

    What made me so emotional was twice today I was deeply frustrated and embarrassed by how horrible I feel. I was invited to a fun occasion by old friends and there was no way I could go - I hurt so bad today that I can't even stand-up straight. Then someone I hadn't seen in years called and wanted to stop by. I had to beg off - I just simply do not have the strength to visit with anybody. I live in fear of a family emergency with my mother or husband happening and I won't have the strength to help them.

    We are less than twenty-four hours from severe, dangerous weather which is another condition that doubles my pain. Our winters are mild but the barometric pressure fluctuations before thunderstorms or tornadoes cause my body to feel like every bone is broken.

    I, too, used to run, Kandrew. People would tell me I had more energy and stamina than any woman they knew. I loved to work hard and now it's all I can do to function even relatively normally and more and more often not at all. Every day I'm dropping out of more activities I used to enjoy.
  • I am happy that you came across this sight. There are some really helpful, friendly, and understanding folks here at SH. I am trying to heal from my Third Cervical Surgery. I lost my Husband on 2/13/13, he was just told he needed a heart transplant 2 weeks prior, I was having a MRI done at a hospital 2 towns from where he was, someone before my MRI was moving to much and my MRI was a hour later than scheduled. As soon I got dressed after the MRI I got the call hubby was in cardiac arrest and it was not looking good. OMG I would of re-scheduled this MRI had I known this. I was shaking and trying to drive to get to him when I arrived his door was closed, I fell to the floor do to Not Being there with him. He was Gone and I didn't get to say good bye. So yes depression and stress can be devastating, he was the Only one who Understood my pain he was a medic/firefighter for 26 years then went to Nursing school and was doing workman comp calls from home because he knew he could not do the Ambulance and Medic work forever.

    I like what Tony said about turning a different color because most people don't understand our pain. I'm completely isolated from all of my friends because I was always with my best friend my hubby. I myself have days wondering why I remain on this earth living in pain, and not having a support system. I do hope you can find a support system it's so important. My Sister lives in Phelps WI it's 6 1/2 hours away from me. So it's not like I can get to her and visit. I could never drive 7 hours by myself with this neck pain. I am going to see if there are any support systems within the hospital near my home.

    I have more physical therapy soon, My last surgery was on 3/11/14 and I had a very odd flare up and we are waiting for the swelling to subside. It's Always something with me, so I am just trying to say Welcome to a place to vent.

    ACDF C4-C7 5/13/2010. Synthetic Bone Graft Failed Fusion.
    PCF C4-C7 8/13/13. Rods and Screws Fused in 3 Months with Autograft.
    C6-C7 Spineous process Surgically Shaved Off 3/11/14.
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    Congrats on the new kittens and Im glad you couldnt leave them behind. Taren dogs are therapy, this I think you and I both know . They calm the soul and have no judgements on our illnesses. It is kind of nice not having someone not throwing their opinion my way on how,or what I should do for my conditions. Im not talking Drs im talking family. Live in my shoes for one day and I can guarantee not one more word would be said again about how pathetic I am. I can remember my brother having a huge sciatic flare up and he looked at me and said if this is how your life is everyday I dont know how you do it. Big wake up call for him on my daily life. On the other hand my sister tells me to quit being a victim. I wanted to smack the crap out her. Now she has been dealing with daily migraines and hasnt worked but maybe 2 months in the last 3 years but is able to go to ballgames, shopping daily, eating out and basically anything she wants to do. Yes she is covered by flma and is paid for her time off and imo is one of those people that are taking advantage of the system, while i continue to work a full time job and take care of my father with no help from her. Her life is too busy. If I even attempt to ask for a little help with taking care of dad she always says I cant i have a headache. Same with my mother. she never came around unless it was to show off something new she bought or wanted to borrow money. The only time she helped was the last 3 days of her life. When the time was near for my mother to die she wanted no one but me. she asked that I lay down with her and have everyone else leave the room. Now i am the bad guy because I was told I ruined her mothers death for her. There is a upside to being a spiney, yes I said a upside. We are more compassionate, caring human beings for others. Why because we understand. We understand the pain, the effects it does to someones life. The emotional rollar coaster ride a person with chronic pain or chronic illness faces. The challenges we know they deal with on a daily basis. We do not judge. I truly believe in one form or another it has made us all a better person.
  • I know how you feel I have lost everything due to a surgeon making a huge mistake and crushed myC5&c4vertebrae
    I have lost my job, my identity, my house, my husband had an affair and took off with a 22year old,My dog who I loved like a child passed away recently and nearly all of my friends have stopped contacting me after years of not being able to do much due to the pain and being completely burnt out due to adrenal failure.
    I also stopped socializing due to the pain embarrassment of not having a job so I feel worthless

    I honestly wish I was dead but I know I probably wouldn't succeed and I would either end up a vegetable or in a mental institution
    If I was an animal I would be put down
    There needs to be more support groups for people struggling in pain. These isn't one in South Australia to my knowledge.
  • I find myself frustrated with my current condition, like many others, having had my last surgery in Feb 2013, I am now over a year into my recovery from L4/S1 revision fusion, and still unable to get back to "normal". I find myself being able to get through 5/6 hours of activity suitably medicated, but then have to rest up for several hours and endure the pain that comes from my nerves through my right leg and into my foot. Like others have stated, people expect you to be back to normal as they see you able to walk around etc, but don't understand that there are things which you can do that don't cause pain,and others, even like sitting down, that make life very difficult.

    I struggle because while I am able to actually walk around, even playing golf, for 5 hours with my pain levels on a low 2/3, after that I have to lay down and that likely means for the rest of the day with the exception of getting up and walking around every so often, or taking the dog out for a walk. However, what I really struggle with is going out and socialising in the evening, because not only is it very painful to be sitting in chairs that you can't seem to get comfortable in, it's also frustrating because you get isolated by others who soon ignore your situation and get on with their socialising regardless of the pain you may be in, my wife included. I feel like I'm in a no win situation, if I go I am miserable and in pain, if I don't go it gives the impression I don't want to join in. I've tried dumbing down my pain by having a few alcoholic beverages, but that is probably not the best solution as I have never been a big drinker and it tends to make me quite Ill, which means that evening of less pain is then followed by 1 or 2 days of sickness which makes my back / nerve pain even worse.

    I feel like I am being frowned upon by my wife and family because I struggle to get back to full time work, managing 3 or 4 days of 5/6 hours only, they don't understand that the commute and hours sitting at my desk is difficult, but yet I can manage to walk the golf course (sorry I keep harping on about playing golf but it's one of the only things I find enjoyment in that also provided me with a good few hours of exercise) or take the dog for lengthy walks. I also try to take care of some things around the house, such as the family's washing and some cleaning, but as I am sure you all can appreciate, even some of the simple things like filling the washing machine can be painful. They also forget that in addition to my spine issues, I also have to contend with the effects of a mini stroke prior to my surgery, but was only diagnosed several months after. It means I have little to no vision to my lower right side, and also has given me cognitive issues with things such as memory / concentration problems. This adds to both my home and work issues, and even in isolation I wonder how I might have coped,never without my soigné issues.

    Sorry, rant over, the upshot is that I too feel very isolated, some times more than others, but as I think I recall from others posts, without the easy visual clues of our disabilities, it makes it very difficult for others to pick up on and understand / make adjustment for, even those closest to us!
  • It's easy to say hang in there , things will get better. I really don't know what to say to ease your mind. To suffer with chronic pain an d then to lose the one you love must be cataclysmic. If I lost my wife I cannot imagine how I could cope. Apart from the practical things she does for me every day, the love and encouragement helps tremendously. I am sure that many of us on this site are thinking of you and wishing you well.
  • It's so hard. I wish I could say something eloquent & meaningful..to be honest I wish I could snap my fingers & take this bloody curse away from all of us! I worked really hard to build a social life for us. I knew coming out to America would be very lonely so I forced myself out to meet people. I'm very shy but I made some great friends. We got together at the weekend as families & the Mum's hung out during the week. As my pain increased & the things I can actually do shrank they drifted away. I tried explaining things.. Not in a burst into tears & tell the truth kind of way. I gave the facts in a perky..see I can still be fun, upbeat way but it didn't really help. I still get invited to things but they're things I can't possibly do, or things I could just about handle but I wouldn't be able to move for days if I did & I have to be able to get up & take care of my kids everyday because my husband can't take time off work & I don't have anyone else! Deep breath!

    Yes! It sucks. Things would be so much easier if I just stopped existing but that's not the option is it? My only brother took his life leaving his 4 kids, my dear parents & me to live with the emotional carnage that remains. We carry on because it's what we have to do. We squirm & wriggle, catching our breath when we have to sit. We feel guilty & useless & rest with our 'rescue blend' of creams & heat whenever we can. We slap on a happy perky face because crying 24/7 gets old really fast. Then one day something strange happened for me... I laughed out loud! It caught me by surprise at first, then I realized I missed that feeling. As the days passed I laughed more & more. I don't know if I'd been faking it for so long that it became real or the changes I'd made in my life were starting to work. Maybe the 'Beast' got bored & went off to torture someone else or it could be the much discussed 'Acceptance' thing.. I don't know.

    Some days I still go into that dark place. To be honest I've been laying here since 4.30am crying in agony. "Oh poor me"
    started around 4.45am, I can't live like this" hit at 5am & "I want to die" was in full force by 5.15am. Since 6am I've been on here & to be honest I had another cry at some of the posts but I'm ok now. As I said, "it's so hard!" but take a look around.. There's a huge full world & ok, I can't climb Everest (not that I'd want to) I find it hard to climb the stairs most days but I can still do a hell of a lot. I took the things I mourned that I couldn't manage anymore, like art & I found a way of doing it 'art Journaling' that's so much easier on my back. Most importantly, I looked at my kids faces & knew they deserved more.

    When I practiced being present in my life & totally enjoyed the things I could, I found it easier to push the pain out of view. Of course it's still there, it screams at me at some point everyday, all-day sometimes but my pain isn't the complete focus of my life anymore.

    Sorry I've written a novel. It's been a long night!

    It's so hard but it does get better. Very few can keep 'The Beasts' attention 24/7 forever. If anyone's having trouble with deep depression that just won't quit, get help. You'll be wondering why you didn't before now...
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • Jlrfrye. Death takes an unimaginable toll on a family. It's natural to find 'anger' to place all of those emotions somewhere tangible. Your sister may be being completely cruel & unreasonable, I've lived that in my family. You are wasting precious years with each other. Am I effected by my life's experiences? Yes!

    My husband experienced sciatica too.. Best thing that ever happened for my marriage! We're all getting older & more of our loved ones are walking a mile in our shoes!
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • backache99backache99 Posts: 1,338
    edited 04/27/2014 - 2:38 AM
    a very long thread called something like[[[[[ where am I I now and how did I get here .things were so different before]]]]]] by a nice guy called bob{in the forest ] .. if you can find it ..its very long and worth{just enter where am I now and how did I get here in the search box and you will find it } a read ,.he had a massive spinal operation [he sent me his MRIs } he needed surgery BIG time .I have not heard from him for ages he lives in sacramento .I used to Skype him but he has disappeared off radar ...the problem with long term illness especially backs is to the untrained eye we look .;;normal;; and as no one can see our pain .some even doubt we are in pain .this adds insult to injury .acceptance is very hard when you young and have your life in front of you .,,,I never thought that I would end up as I have ..I always looked after myself when I was younger ,in my teens and 20s I was a keep fit person I enjoyed bike riding I ran and swam I did not drink or smoke and I was the right weight I was very health I am a lifelong vegetarian and I still don't drink but due to boardham I smoke .and I am overweight .I can't do anything without pain taking over ..its very cruel
    1997 laminectomy
    2007 repeat laminectomy and discectomy L4/L5
    2011 ALIF {L4/L5/S1}
    2012 ? bowel problems .still under investigation
    2014 bladder operation may 19th 2014
  • I've posted this quote before,

    “...occasionally I wished I could walk through a picture window and have the sharp, broken shards slash me to ribbons so I would finally look like I felt.” 
    ― Elizabeth Wurtzel

    Human beings are social animals. We need to connect even more so when we reach a point that we're no longer contributing in the usual ways. I used to walk around with bright red hair thinking 'I don't care what people think!' but deep down we all do!
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
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