I am on my way to L4/L5 fusion anterior/posterior. Surgeon and husband conquer that I am a perfect candidate for this, in my opinion drastic surgery, scheduled Sept. 9th. I walk now, to do the exercise that I read that I will need to do after surgery. I do the stabilizing exercises shown by the PT. I crawl out of bed, some days, and some I can stand up after letting Tylenol 3 take hold. Bone on bone, with ab muscle control, I walk, and I work at my craft business. Sitting is a trial of strength, I usually try to work always standing and walking. I have acquired trekking poles, and they act like two more legs, with less twisting and grating on my spine. This takes discipline, and a "I don't care who sees me using these tools! After 5 almost 6 decades, I should know what tools to use!"
I am a strong woman, and no one impersonal to me would know the pain I bear. The people who find out, can not believe I have, as I say, 'a broken back'! No one would understand severe spondylolythesis with a 75% slip. No one would understand the pain, meeting me on the sidewalk or trail. But it is incredibly eye opening to watch me, wobble out of bed, when I used to be the first up at first light, barn taken care of, coffee and tea ready before dawn. No more.
Tylenol is a strange drug, it disassociates the pain from my brain. My body takes the toll, and gets exhausted. I can sleep, after the evening dose and sleep 6 hours, usual for me. but now, I wake to excruciating pain. I take more Tylenol and sleep for three hours more. I feel I've lost half a day of productivity.
I am frightened by the recovery from major surgery. I hope and pray that when they move everything out of the way, to do the work to make the fusion, they remember where everything was located before they were there. I know everyone has a slightly different anatomy, same parts, just slightly different locations. This is something I will discuss with the internist, for into his hands, I will intrust my body.
I have great faith in my ortho surgeon and believe he is in his prime with great partners. Therefore I go, looking forward to something, more fearful, than the birth of my children. It will help me control this awful pain which I can no longer try to run away from and just bear it!