Post Surgery Update
This is either going to be a short post or I will have to write in intervals. I am not allowed to sit for more than 15 minutes. Sunday morning I had a discectomy, whereby doctors open your back and remove debris from one’s herniated disk which is irritating nerve endings that send pain from your lower back, to your rear end (just trying to keep it real), your thigh and calf, and all the way to your toes. The good news is that it was successful. The doctors were pleased.
When the physical therapist came in the next day and told me it was time to walk, I thought she was nuts. My muscles in my lower back were contracting in pain and begging me to kick her out of the room. The problem was I couldn’t kick! However she had the perfect combination of drill sergeant and nursing mother and within minutes I was walking—with less grace, mind you, than a robot, but walking I was.
I went home Monday night and basically watched TV all day yesterday. (Did you know that virtually every TV show in America has a cool gay guy or lesbian couple? And even the cleanest of shows tend to have an immoral sexual theme. You think Hollywood has an agenda? I remember when J.J. from Good Times thought he might have contracted a venereal disease and they had to put a warning at the beginning of the show. It was the talk of the town. That would be considered clean today. Beaver Cleaver come save us! Okay, back to my back).
I felt bad enough yesterday that I thought it would be days, if not weeks, before I would get back any zeal for anything other than lying in bed, much less writing. I was pleasantly surprised to wake up this morning with a completely different outlook. Whether it was my first café afuh (cappuccino) since Saturday or the prayers of our faithful friends (or a combination), today has been quite the contrast. Although, as I said, I can only sit for a few minutes at a time, I was energized to write.
Also, no painkillers today—just two Advil at noon. I am already off the hard stuff. (Maybe I can sell the leftovers—JUST KIDDING! But if you are interested—AGAIN, KIDDING!) The creation of the human body is a wonder. The fact that someone could, even with good intent, stab me in the back (no pun intended) and four days later I could be pain free is amazing. Don’t get me wrong, I am pain free as long as I don’t move the wrong way and my lower back has as much flexibility as flagpole—but still, I am amazed at the healing power of the body.
In addition I just took a walk. The doctors told me that the more I walk the better. Yesterday I would take regular walks from my room to the living room. Today I ventured outside. While I was able get my shoes on, Yael, my daughter, had to tie them. After I left the house, I decided to return and get my camera. I had almost forgotten it was Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles) and was almost blindsided by all the booths that had been built in our neighborhood. By the time I returned to the house, climbing one flight of stairs, I was winded and nauseous. But I was not going to give up. I got my camera and went for a walk. At the end of those fifteen minutes I felt like I had finished a marathon. I returned home triumphant and exhausted.
OUTLOOK AND PRAYER
My doctors have said that I will need to be at home for at least two weeks. Each day I need to walk as much as I can, sit as little as I need to and rest. I would ask for prayer, that as my back loosens up and all the pain from the surgery subsides, that there will be no lingering back pain. Already, all the sciatic nerve pain in my leg is 100% gone and was from the moment I woke up after surgery, but the lower back pain level is still unknown. Thank you for standing with me through this trial. While I love to find humor in anything, this has been a serious issue and I can’t thank you enough for your prayers and encouraging emails.