Recovery is a long and complicated road

Recovery is a long and complicated road

Here I am at just over a year since my back surgery. Woah, it has been a very long year…

What I have dealt with since my discectomy:

  1. Physical recovery- I have felt so slow during this recovery… I felt like I should be HEALED in 3 months. Truth be told, I was not. I did not realize how much the hernia affected my strength until I started my recovery — weeks after the initial surgery because I had to be VERY careful not to reherniate in those first 6-8 weeks.
    Just before I went into surgery…

    My herniation was bad enough that I had foot drop in my right foot (I could only bring it up half of normal range at best), I couldn’t feel my foot part of the time, and my whole right leg was generally tingling or numb. It was not good. I am still stronger on my left side since it was compensating, and I have better balance on my left side though I am right side dominant. Thankfully this is quickly evening out again.

  2.  Depressed mood- I had been dealing with overwhelming feeling of glum. Glum Glum Glum. Doom doom doom. Gloom Gloom Gloom (also have you played this game? It’s amazing. Basically you make a family as depressed as you can and then kill them — all the while the people you play with attempt to make your family happy and make you lose the game). I have made some life changes that have definitely helped, and I am proud to say I have pulled myself out of the deep sludge of it.
  3. Big change. We moved into a house right after my surgery so I was not physically strong enough to even enjoy the home that first winter. This year, when I started some of the gardening I did a bit too much and strained my back, had to take it easy, do some steroids, and now all is well again. I am just amping up the PT exercises and being more cautious.
From one of our hikes this summer, I was so happy to be back out in those mountains and trails this year!!

Overall, I am healthier and stronger than I was one year ago. I am improving and just keep looking forward. I am very thankful to my family and friends. Not everyone knew I was feeling depressed and honestly I didn’t know personally until it was pretty overwhelming. Once I realized it personally, I communicated with my hubby and my physician. I didn’t want medications and made that very clear with my MD, my first step was to just acknowledge the thoughts/feelings. That worked enough for me to start making changes to help myself, this may not work for anyone else. Being a nurse, I’m quite in control of my healthcare and am a VERY difficult patient.

I have to say a big thank you to my family who have helped me through this and have been patient with me. I could not have done it without my ROCK of a husband..

Til next time,

Keeks

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