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New and just looking for someone to talk to.

farohffaroh Howell, MIPosts: 4
edited 08/30/2015 - 11:52 AM in New Member Introductions
Hi! My name's Elle and I've been suffering from lower back pain for years. Most recently, my pain became much worse last fall, and I went through my second round of PT through November. The MRI at that point showed no disc protrusion/herniation, which was a bit disheartening since I wanted to know why I was in so much pain. After completing PT, I eventually felt better for a few weeks, but then it progressively got to the point where I couldn't even get out of bed. I literally had to pee in a cup, and don't ask how I took care of other stuff. :) I know I should have went to the hospital, but I was terrified of the pain of having to go down my stairs to get into an ambulance, and I figured they would probably just send me home with some Naproxin and tell me to rest. I have little faith in ERs sometimes...

It eventually got better over the course of a month or so (by better I mean tolerable), until May when the pain of sitting became intolerable and I started to have shooting pain down my right leg. I had another MRI in June which showed disc protrusion at l3-l4, herniation at l4-l5, and protrusion at l5-s1 (not sure what the difference is.) I was referred to a spine doctor who kind of played it off like it was nothing major despite my ridiculous pain, and referred me for cortisone injections. I had to wait two months to get in for that. I can't even explain the anger I felt about that.

My cortisone injection was last Tuesday, the 18th of August, and I was told that the pain may increase for a few days but things should get better within a week. I was so hopeful that this whole ordeal would be over and I could get my life back. Well, the pain did increase severely, and my primary doctor put me on Norco for the pain, which at least took the edge off and gave the the ability to get to the bathroom as needed. By Saturday I was barely able to walk again, and I toughened up and got down the stairs to get to the ER.

Another MRI showed worsened protrusion and herniation, but thankfully no infection or injury from the cortisone injection. I stayed in the hospital for a few days as they got my pain under control and I could walk again, and I was referred to a neurosurgeon to discuss a discectomy and sent home with an boat-load of drugs and a walker.

Neurosurgery contacted me Wednesday, and I was hopeful that I could see a surgeon soon and get this pain over with asap. Nope. I have to wait another month to see him and meanwhile take a ton of pain meds and get about with a walker. I cried for hours out of frustration.

I'm trying to be strong but it's so difficult. I'm so sorry for the wall of text but I guess I just needed to get it all out to people who might understand my situation. I had to drop my fall classes that I was so looking forward to. Having to walk with a walker, not being able to go outside and live my life, spending my entire summer in bed...it's getting to me. If you read all of this, thank you, and if you want to talk, please feel free to reply or PM me.


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~ spine-health moderator, savage
L4-L5 Laminectomy & Discectomy, 9/2015
L5-S1 Disc Herniation, 8/2016


  • Hi Elle, I'm Michelle. I am so sorry for your pain. I was in tears reading your post because so much of what you said rang true for me at parts in my life. I hope that my words offer comfort. If not, stay in the forums and read. There is a lot of information that will help you to get thru this emotionally, physically and mentally.

    I'm a blunt speaker so bear with me, this is not intended as telling you what to do, it's just some things I learned.

    First thing that helped me get results was to cope and manage thru the frustration of the tasks before you. If you can get a person who can be your main support, it will really help you with the steps you need to take. They are the person who sees your pain when you are managing,as you said, not better. So when you are trying to explain in a doctor office how you feel and maybe your not in excruciating pain at that moment, they will validate to the doctor and help you. They will hear what your not hearing in the appointment. They will be your rock to build your future health on. For me it has been a husband and or girlfriends when he is out of town.

    Start a pain journal. Even if it is just a time sheet of meds, your pain level when you took them, it's a start. Plus, with norco and others it helps me to keep it all straight. Meds that work or don't, u should take them exactly as prescribed until you see ur doctor. He/she uses them to relieve pain, but they are not god, they cannot exactly predict what will work or not and if you stop one or over take one, it makes the doctor not feel like you are listening. He has to be able to determine if they work and that pain journal is your ally to get the help you need. (Think of it as if u were getting drugs for your heart. You would never self diagnose the drugs. It is the same with back remedies.)

    With your pain journal keep all mris and outcomes of procedures. If an epidural injection worked first time, but not second, or for a day, or an hour..they need to know.

    From your perspective you want to fix ur boo boo. From the dr perspective he has heard of the ailment but does not know the exact course for u until he follows steps. So after that initial appt it took u months to get with a neuro..in every case...he is going to try meds, pt, shots for an Mri like yours. And if you get a second opinion... Same thing. They all need to do the steps. It is frustrating as heck, but there is a reason.

    Like the meds, they have to see the outcome of the shots. If they were effective to u is only a part of the solution. They are also diagnostic tools to determine the exact location of the pain. So let's say u get Caudill injection for l5-s1 to no real relief, but the transformenal at l3-4 lasted 3 months or even relieved you 3 days. That tells the doctor that the issue for u on that day is l3-4 and that either more shots may be beneficial there or fusion or lamenectomy....etc. so it may be a lot more shots. It may go away. Who knows, sadly, this is the long frustrating part...but eventually patterns show.

    Not to go off of u, but in my recent shot history we were doin fascet injections with no effect, but goin thru the process. I was just about to have second when neuro, a new doctor, said hmmmm I think no. Asked me to have pain management dr try epidural spinal block at different level instead. He had a feeling From my mri I needed third fusion at another level. These shots would either solve, help or have absolutely no affect. (Jimminy cricket excuse my affect vs effect!). Anyways, we did this. First shot had relief and walking again for a week. Oh happy days. Second injections lasted 3 hours. 3rd set confirmed to pain management dr fusion was the answer because I had immediate relief and then wore off two days later. So diagnostically the shots were win win...even though I only got sporadic relief.

    Do not misunderstand. I do not want fusion. It will be my third fusion, third level. I don't think of fusion as win win. I think of the treatment to isolate the condition as a win. Now pain management dr and neuro are in complete agreement and this also coincides with the physical therapy apps (20) in two month time period. I never received relief from physical therapy except during tens, heat, ultrasound and massage. I also had a horrible side affect from the third shot, spinal headache. The point of me going on about myself here..I could not get frustrated by this long process or lack of relief or side affect because it would not solve my back problem. By enduring this I now feel comfortable with fusion solution and as I did exceptional from first two over 14 years..I'm excited. It's gonna suck. It's gonna be hard. And I have no guarantee.

    Before I met with current neuro, my old awesome ortho, who did my first two fusions, was sending me to just pt. he said to me he didn't see really any problem. This is an exceptional trusted dr, who I would highly recommend. But in that moment I knew he was not the doctor for me any more. In my case I'm young, okay 42, but I feel young. His practice is completely filled with retired patients in the late 80's and up. I had been with him 10 years and felt so comfortable with him. He did my parents backs too many years ago. For me it boiled down for to this: I saw him treating an aging population that wanted to be pain free. I want to be pain free and more.i wanted someone who would help me cope with never being a runner again, but also getting me back to long walks, which I'm passionate about. In my mind I see people way worse off bless them than me who do this and have found a balance. So for me I needed to look for a doctor who shared that vision with me, and or something more than just pain free. I feel like a bad person saying this, because I make pain free sound like just something. I am in no way dismissing that goal for anyone including myself. I just needed to try.

    My point. I don't think anyone should ever feel like there is no hope for want they want in life. I also know u can have unreal expectations. I don't think you do. I do think u want this fixed and now. Bless u, we all do. But sadly with this type of truly invisible illness..except the days we can't walk..it is invisible...no one can know your pain. And I don't believe you go dr shopping til u get what u want. I just think in your gut, when you are talking about your spine and your whole rest of your life..only u have to live it. So please, even though it SUCKS, keep going. Find the next dr until you get to one that you feel has really exhausted the steps, you have control. You do. There is nothing invisible about how that pain feels. Don't be alone with it. Get help. Don't stop until someone is willing to try anything and everything. Be coach able, be a good patient. Be patient cuz this is not a cast. It takes forever.

    But I will tell you, you will find a solution. Either pain free, or managing and coping with a new normal. Don't let the side affects of the frustration keep you from moving forward.
    Guggenheim, this was epically long reply. I'm sorry. But last thing, there is a step by step process I think under chronic pain. Think it is the first sticky in that forum. It lays out in such great detail what I inadequately and minimally refer to here. It is a blueprint to success. It is really the only path that has worked for me three separate times.

    Gosh, one last thing. You will read about fusion all over this site. I want to share that I did have two, upcoming third. First one was when I was 31 years old. I'm not gonna go into the long details. I had to have it. At my age now of course I wish I had not, but I have even now come to terms with the fact I had to have it. I don't know if this will even come up for you, I sure hope something else works of course. I just get the feeling you are young and I wanted u to hear a positive story in closing. I had it and recouped well, like it never even happened a year out. I ran marathons, I roller bladed, and I mommed like a bad booty awesome thing. It was the best decision of my life. When the level above went out ten years later..I knew it could happen as he said it would be necessary at the first one. I recouped amazingly from that one too, but now being 41, listened when dr said stop running. And now I'm a year and a half later with the need for the one below the initial. I had gotten a second option on the second..the second opinion dr is my new neuro. He had told me then to do this level. I had ignored him though because my old dr already had an operating room booked in two weeks, new guy would be months. So while I was happy with the second surgery..had I paused and listened, I would not be where I am now. Woulda shoulda coulda. My point of course is even a seasoned veteran of this mess and I made a,rookie mistake. Oh well, I am human and I wanted to be fixed and quick. Learn from me. Maybe there is something to the fact this all takes a while. I mean..it is ur only spine. It sucks that it is hurt and will take time to heal..but time is also your ally to inform yourself and to really the about you and your life and what you need to live it.

    Sorry so long, really. Hope I was of help and welcome!
  • My kids and their friends decorated my walker with different duck tape. I hate my walker, but darn it if I didn't feel better after they did that! Just an idea.

    I just got s polka dotted cane. I love it. It makes me feel safer when getting around, and is not as cumbersome as the walker. I don't know if it would help u, but it did me.

    And I just think you are brave. I'm glad you shared. I'm sorry you can't take classes right now. That must be horrible to have ur life on hold. I too have to wait for a new certification a friend of mine is able to get. I wanted to so badly but just cannot physically attend the classes now. Grrrrr. Vent on lady! I feel you on that one!
  • Hi Elle! I'm so sorry to hear about your pain and frustration. :( As you have probably found on this website, there are many others who are dealing with similar situations.

    2dgs gave you some great advice. Keeping a pain log has been invaluable to me throughout my process with 2 surgeries along the way. There are lots of apps for this, the one I was using was quite simple but would do things like generate charts and graphs to print to bring to the doctor's office. But there are lots of options to choose from depending on what exactly you want to track.

    During my long waits between visits, I have found it to be the most helpful to do a ton of research and read many people's experiences online. Then, I made a list of questions for my surgeon. Luckily, for my cervical surgery, my surgeon was an ADR specialist, which was definitely the right fit for me over fusion. But if you are familiar with all of the possible things the surgeon might suggest (PT, nerve medication, microdiscectomy, laminectomy, ADR, fusion, etc), which are all detailed on this website, you will get much more out of your appointment.

    I know waiting is really terrible. But researching and asking questions of others helped and gave me the knowledge and confidence I needed to be able to make a decision when I finally saw my surgeon and was able to schedule my procedure quickly.
    L4/5/S1 scar tissue removal surgery, plus unexpected L4/5 microdiscectomy #2 October 2015
    L4/5 microdiscectomy May 2015
    2-level ADR C4-6 (Mobi-C) February 2015
  • farohffaroh Howell, MIPosts: 4
    @2dgs4cmpany: Thank you so much for your invaluable information and support. As you suggested, I do have that support person who is there for me always. My fiance has been unbelievably supportive, yet I feel that he just doesn't quite understand my sadness and frustration sometimes - and that's ok. I don't expect him to understand everything because thankfully he hasn't been through this. As you said, I definitely need him to listen to the doctors when my brain is overwhelmed and foggy! :) And a pain journal - that's a brilliant idea!

    I think my greatest frustration right now is the scheduling for my doctors - waiting two months for a cortisone injection that didn't work was so disheartening. Now having to wait another month to see a surgeon...I felt like any positivity I had about all of this was just ripped away from me the moment the scheduler told me the soonest the surgeon could see me was the end of September. I just don't understand how a very large, prominent hospital can be so incredibly backed up. My heart breaks for the patients who are in worse condition than I am who have to suffer so long.

    @brandis77 - Making a list of questions while I wait is a great idea! And I'm quite the geek so I'm sure I will find an app for that. ;)

    Thank you for for your responses, and I wish you both peaceful, pain-free days! <3
    L4-L5 Laminectomy & Discectomy, 9/2015
    L5-S1 Disc Herniation, 8/2016
  • Both u and brandis r correct..good time to spend getting your ducks in a row for when you do meet with your doctor.

    I'm just now really thinking .. I wonder if the doctors who we wait months to see really comprehend what that visit means to us. It's not like a yearly woman appt. it's not like a well check for your toddler even. It's nowhere close to a physical. That doctor visit when you are in chronic pain almost feels like the end all of first dates. We prep and prep so much. I think I even pick out my clothes the night before, yeeeesh! Same with our treatments Ellie-u got that one right. We want to be fixed and yet we know we are having the most complex date of our lives. And unlike all those other appointments or dates, we don't get a call back the next day or results from blood work in three days. Heck we are lucky if we get the second date! And the worst for me was always when I happened to be non flared up when I saw the doctor after the long wait. Sure enough it happened time and again when I was younger and I was like so stinking happy to be pain free. I didn't bring anyone with me, I was all smiles. I did communicate the trouble I was having during the flare up, but since I was so peachy keen perfectly happy I'd practically skip away. Then don't you know, mr pain comes back..woohee does he Evahhhh! And then you gotta start again. Gggggggrrrrrrrr!

    Something I added to my list this time, prepping for my third fusion: therapy. Hubby is the one who brought it up. Ooooh did my shoulders go up at first. Then thank god I listened. He said he is having a really hard time coping with seeing me in this much pain and balancing his need to care for me without being able to fix me. Then he has a seriously hectic job that I have always supported. We have teenagers and I always supported them. Everything is tipsy topsy now. Don't get me wrong. The kids can care for themselves physically and really help. Hubby can too. I'm very very very very lucky, oh I know how lucky I am to have some help in the way of a twice a month house cleaner for the bathrooms and floors. I have a large network of the best girlfriends I don't deserve, they are that amazing. I have every support mechanism. He didn't. He asked for help. So I set it up and I am going first so I can get some help wrapping my head around my new physical normal. I have to stop seeing help to me as control. I like to think I have done this and have a zen about me..but I do think I might be wrong too, he hee.

    He will go to therapy separate with same person. Then we will have group. We have been married 20 years. We are not seeking marital therapy, we are seeking coping with a new normal therapy. First session is this week. I will let you know. I look at it like epidural injections. Might help, might not. Might have side affects, might not. Unlike epidural injections I cannot see it hurting giving it a go in any situation.

    I was out with my cane again today for pt and scans. Had a lot of really awkward stares at my neighborhood grocery stop on way home. I really didn't like how it made me feel. Two people asked me what happens to my leg (it drags right now /numb/electric lightning for fun). I usually say it's to do with my spinal disorder. Today I just didn't want to have to share. So I said it was acting up. I have to go so slow walking back to my car cuz I'm exhausted at that point. Cars jester for me to go cuz they see me about to, but they don't see the cane at first. So I feel worse at how slow I go. I try to wave them on, but darn it if they are not polite. I think everyone else is probably fine with me, and if they aren't that is there problem, I just wish I didn't feel like garbage about it. I'm gonna bring that up in therapy. Do any of u ever feel like that?
  • 2dgs - It was only after my second surgery that I finally understood the emotional impact of my situation on my husband. We struggled through everything, feeling alone and not wanting to burden each other with our feelings. But that didn't help, and I've since become very frustrated that doctors don't talk to people about counseling or caretaking before surgery. Because the reality is that NONE of us are alone, there are many people out there dealing with similar issues. Counseling and/or support groups are as important for recovery than the physical things. I'd love to hear more about how this goes for you, thanks for sharing!!
    L4/5/S1 scar tissue removal surgery, plus unexpected L4/5 microdiscectomy #2 October 2015
    L4/5 microdiscectomy May 2015
    2-level ADR C4-6 (Mobi-C) February 2015
  • Just checking in on you Elle. Hope today is better in some way? R the new drugs helping?

    I hear you on the couseling. Brings to mind the scurry of mental health attention after robin Williams death. So many started asking good questions like why does it take a suicide for people to wake up to the serious problems of mental health. We have all heard the analogy that if you break a bone it can be fixed. When your heart and mind hurt, people should not feel the shame society manifests about seeking counseling, as if that is weakness, or makes us less.

    I wish that after my surgeries now that the doc had said okay, take this med for pain, this med for breakthrough pain, this ointment for wound care, this is you physical therapy plan, here is your occupational plan..now I want u to remain calm, but new medical wisdom has broken thru and now I have to go over your mental plan. Don't freak! It's a cool new thing we are doing and everyone who tries it has success. It really is better than the drugs and the physical stuff, cuz when the body hurts and those don't help, boy is this gonna help you relax and cope!

    Then wouldn't it be cool if he said all the insurance companies insist on it, and provide it in your coverage! What a difference I think these forums would be. What a life changer for most of us.

    I'm excited about tomorrow and look forward to meeting the therapist. I hope she is the one for me and turns into my best medicine.

    My left leg is killing me! Bad nerve pinch day. Can barely put weight on left, hunch over walker when moving. Mostly in bed with elevation and heat. When I sit for food whole leg goes numb so minimizing that time. Trying not to damage self before I get surgery. Hoping it slides out from wherever it moved in over night. You all know, no amount of mess cover it. Lucky the laying does do the trick. I said in another post, very grateful I can crochet. Without that and being able to check in on others, I do think I would be sad. But, I'm not. I feel so lucky actually.i know it could be worse today.
  • farohffaroh Howell, MIPosts: 4
    edited 09/04/2015 - 9:37 PM
    Ugh I had this long reply typed up but I accidentally hit the back button and the forums ate my post. Oops! It's 3:30am and I'm finally getting sleepy, so I'll attempt to update without hitting the back button tomorrow. Well, later today. :)

    I hope everyone is doing as well as you can be! <3
    L4-L5 Laminectomy & Discectomy, 9/2015
    L5-S1 Disc Herniation, 8/2016
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,476
    I can't tell you how many times my hand has moved and clicked me onto another part of the site!

    Hope you're able to get some good sleep!
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • Isn't the errant hand the worst! It's not just you guys. Funny, sometimes I wish I could just reply with a short answer. Looks like I will this time! (Cognant that I type way too much) :)
  • Hi Elle
    I had a car accident 3rd of March 2010 after three years of pain my doctor sent me to see a pain clinic in Cambridge there they got me on better pain killers and excercise and I had my nerves in my back burnt off which helped a lot still have to take pain killer but less dose, see if you can get you doctor to send you to a hospital that does this operation, but I woren you you have to be awake so they get it right and it hurts like hell but worth it in the end
  • farohffaroh Howell, MIPosts: 4
    I did it again so I am writing my reply in notepad then copy/pasting it. I'm tired of feeding the forums my posts from my mistakes, and today is one of those days where I can barely stay awake so I'm not risking losing my post again!

    I saw my spine doctor on Tuesday and she started me on yet another medication - Toradol. It's only to be taken for a short period of time, and I'm over halfway through it and I've yet to notice any difference. She also showed me the MRI images of the the little buggar of herniation that is causing me so much pain. While it causes me pain and frustration and tears, it was fascinating to see just what is causing it.

    I received some great news yesterday! My appointment with my neurosurgeon that was originally scheduled for 9/30 was moved up to 9/18 with a different surgeon that comes highly recommended. That's 12 fewer days that I could possibly lose my mind from the waiting. :)

    2dgs4cmpany, I hope your time with the therapist was helpful for you. I've thought of talking to the psychologist at my primary care doctor's office, just to get my feelings about this all out. I often feel so guilty that my fiance has to help me all the time. He has a wonderful job that allows him to work from home when situations like this arise, but I can't stand the feeling of helplessness and I feel like I am holding him back somehow. I have 5 canaries and a lovebird that he now has to care for on top of everything else, and I feel so guilty about that. Please, if you are comfortable sharing, I am interested to know how your therapist visit went.

    Part of my motivation to get better is so that I can take care of my birdies myself - I adore them and I enjoy caring for them. It hurts that I can only grab my walker and walk down the hallway to visit them for a few minutes at a time a few times a day when I am used to spending the majority of my day in their room with them. My good computer is in their room, so my school/work was always done with them serenading me and it was glorious. I can't wait for those days again. :)

    My eyes are getting heavy again so I will wish everyone happiness and comfort before I drift off to sleep.

    <3, Elle
    L4-L5 Laminectomy & Discectomy, 9/2015
    L5-S1 Disc Herniation, 8/2016
  • Hello to you and thanks for the update, especially what you shared, Brandis and Elle. Your words meant a great deal, and to hear you honestly share how you felt the affects of chronic pain on your relationships. It is extremely hard to go thru pain alone, and with someone who loves and adores you enduring it - well of course they are right there by your side, but this pain takes a heavy toll. I am confident from your words your loved ones are your rocks. It sounds like you both are loving and supportive of them before this pain entered your life. Now that it has moved in with you..someone in a post said its like those commercials you see on TV that recommend some medicine. They have a little cartoon of the pain lurking as they show the human taking the medicine feeling some relief. But that cartoon guy lingers. I really liked that post because it's easy to imagine this green yucky cartoon guy who has moved in on my marriage. His name is pain. I never asked him to move in, hubby didn't either. We are learning to live with him. I think in the same post they said now that they can envision the little green bugger, they, the person, is now in control of how much they are gonna let the green guy rule the house and body. I'm thinking on that one for sure..great analogy.

    Probably this post will turn epic long, sorry. But it helps to get it out.

    About your birds, they sound lovely! I hope you get more and more time with them my dear. I'm so grateful for my dog spot. He is a shitzu and my best bud. He listens when no one else does. He plays with his toys I think to amuse me. I think having a pet during life is grand, but when you are in pain, they become such a treasure.

    So my session: awkward to walk into a beautiful two story place that says behavior management on sign out front. Oh well. No parking save the one handicap space, SCORE! I hobbled in with my cute as a button polka dotted cane. Sat and did paperwork and was assured there was a elevator to get to her office when called. But ha, you could drop a pin at the silence the front staff made when they realized I had to use it. I got the impression it wasn't pretty. The lovely staff cautioned me it takes two minutes to get to the second floor on it as it is slow and I must not remove my hand from the lever. I was excited because they had one! Soooo yes, the whole beginning part I was extremely self conscious. I got over it when I reminded myself that yes I look weird all hobble, but everyone has pain and sometimes it's not visible. So I took a seat and waited. Beautiful windows overlook trees, I love the outdoors, side note: everyone in waiting room is glued to their electronic devices. I marvel at this. No one looks around anymore. No one looks outside to the fresh air. I'm usually in bed most days and am sick of electronic devices. Interesting what gifts my pain gives me.

    The therapist was so amiable, affable, loving. We made small talk about our kids starting school, we both have freshman, I also have a senior. Then I started. I shared events from my past growing up and we really focused on a part of my life I had not really grieved for. Not to go into detail because this post is long enough..but basically I lost someone very close 20 years ago. About five years ago I was told it wasn't an accident like I had thought, but suicide. Since I was a mom at the time of this knowledge and working and busy..I moved along with the new info. I never grieved it.

    So then we started talking about my pain, managing it, the toll of always wanting to get back to who I was. Because I'm 42 I really have it in my head that I can get back to me, all sunshine and running and can do attitude and over achiever. I was a beloved school librarian rockstar. I was a runner. I was the Pta president. I was volunteer of the year...I was was I was. She connected the life lost, how I did not grieve it. She talked about grieving. She said in doing this I can accept that I was. I am not going to ever be the bob costs story of an Olympian that overcame and became my old rockstar self. My new normal is now. This is it.

    She gave me an exercise to help me. I meditate. I cannot sit like I used to so I always do it laying down in bed with pillows so I don't fall asleep, but can relax enough to concentrate, and breathe. This technique has always worked for me since my pain started. I can control my breathing and fine tune. I can feel life. I have achieved such a relaxed state I can see the green slime dude of pain and focus on him, breathe thru him so he is like a glimmer. It is a beautiful thing when I can do this.

    I cannot do this when I'm moving. I never seem to relax. I'm all stressed. So the exercise for me is to try to consciously integrate that more relaxed state into my movements so I can be present now. Instead of focusing on who I use to be, just be now.

    We talked about my husband and how I absolutely hate how this pain affects him and the house management and how I feel about it. She recommended again to try to ease back to a life force state of meditation. The more I can do this, the more present I can be. I can sense better what I need or don't need. I don't need to feel guilty about my pain or that my husband wants to help. I can accept his help. If I feel I am putting things on his plate..try to only put on the platter a real need right now. And in turn, really relax and hear his need. He wants to care and love me, in sickness and in health. He doesn't see me as a burden, but his cheerleader, his love.

    This all sounds all well and good. I left feeling lighter. In practice these last few days..hubby and I are really listening to one another. I told him everything. He was surprised I shared the death of the loved one. He told me he too thought I never grieved and never said this to me in 20 years because he thought it was a sore spot for me. Wow. To hear that, something new like that in a 20 year marriage was incredible to me. And wonderful wonderful wonderful that he shared. And so we talked and it was wonderful.

    I'm very glad I went. He goes in three weeks, my next one is in two weeks. Next week we will get fusion surgery date. I also have a new issue I have to discuss with other doctor, they found nephrocalcinosis on my cat scan, kidneys with excess calcium deposits. I've never had kidney stones, and only one uti. I do have hypothyroid, genetically passed on from grandmother and diagnosed at age 7. Research suggests the kidney calcium is something that is by product of other health concern, and probably in my case related to thyroid. I'm sharing this in this post because the therapy session really could not have come at a better time.

    Instead of feeling anxious and upset, I feel like I can handle this. I'm just gonna handle it. I'm gonna be present. I'm not gonna worry about trying to rockstar or anything. It is what it is. I will be okay. It's like I have the green pain monster, the blue emotional monster, the light bouncy yellow happy me, and the red angry tiny bug like dude all around me. I think I have anew tool to be in control of them so I can be present and cope. Will let you know how that works out next week.

    I wish you joy and happiness and light. I wish you all things yellow and comforting. Big hug and,

    Thanks for listening.
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