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12 Days Post Surgery

raceman190rraceman190 Posts: 1
edited 09/17/2015 - 9:09 PM in Recovering from Surgery
I'm currently 12 days into recovery from a T11-L3 fusion surgery due to a motorcycle wreck. I fractured my L1 in 2 places and have a tibial plateau fracture in my left knee, granted, my knee didn't require surgery. I do have a very supportive and helpful wife, but even so, I feel helpless. Being 25, I'm used to being so independent, but now, it seems like I've list all masculinity because my wife has to do almost everything for me. It's starting to get depressing, even though I got out of the hospital 1 week ago, I still feel shut-in, just because of not being able to do much by myself. I had to take Golytely (the same stuff that they give people prior to a colonoscopy) because I'd gone 2 weeks without a bowel movement and was doubled over in tears with gastric pain last night before I went to the ER. I'm starting to get so depressed, not just from the pain, but because of the fact that, even though she is 1,000% supportive, it pains me to let her see me in this condition. I'm in tears almost every day because of either pain or post surgery depression. I know that a lot of you are going and/or have gone through this, so I'm seeking advice. I hate feeling depressed, especially when my wife sees me in tears because of the fact that I feel helpless. What do you guys suggest as far as coping with the depression, pain, seeming like you're being a burden, stuff like that? Any advice helps. Thank you guys so much.

Depression and chronic pain


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    Please take the time to read this post and refer to it when you have questions

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    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • I am sorry you are having such a difficult time. When unexpected injuries occur we are not prepared to manage this extreme change of pace. I fell March 2015 and fractured my foot, elbow, shoulder and was put immediately into a hard neck brace due to compressed cervical vertebrae.

    The first thing I did when I returned home from the hospital was call 8 friends and family for immediate help (my sister flew in to help me, another person got me a chair to put on the shower so I could sit to take a shower, another person brought a gripper to pick things up and a stand so I could read my iPad without bending my neck to look down etc.. Then I emailed 20 friends with a list of things I needed from meals, to rides, groceries picked up etc. What I found was, people want to help but they don't know how.

    From there I sent emails when I felt up to it (between the pain) and kept them up to date with how I was progressing and asked for help and prayer.

    I was amazed at the outpouring of love and caring. My world changed significantly as I am sure you understand but by reaching out to people I didn't feel so alone. As I was up to it, people came into my home to visit. When I wasn't up to it, I would email or text people.

    When I was in pain, I would text people asking for prayer.

    I had a choice, I could either cry or smile and make the best of it. I decided to view it as my new adventure. I have a very supportive husband who had to shower me, shampoo my hair, blow it dry, dress me and undress me (and still go to work everyday). This is when you truly understand who that person is that you married. By asking friends to help, I could relieve my husband of much of the stress he was feeling.

    As months went by I began to ask God what the lesson is that I am supposed to be learning. I believe there is a lesson for us in everything that happens to us. And what came back to me was that this was a season of my life that I need to sit badk and allow others to love and serve me because I DON'T HAVE A CHOICE. And when this season is over, the lesson I have learned besides patience is how to care for others in a similar difficult situation.

    C4-C5 ACDF surgery with plating August 28.
    cord compression due to disc-osteophyte complex
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