Monday, February 25, 2013

Just breathe ...

Well, the back surgery drama continues...heaven help us all. 

I have a very large, very infected sebaceous cyst right in the center of the small of my back.  This is not good.  The surgeon will not operate as long as there is any infection whatsoever. I am on day 4 of 10 of a second round of antibiotics and, so far, it's not cleared up like I would wish.  I think that the surgery may well be delayed.

I am anxious to get the surgery done as scheduled, but at the same time, I don't want to have it done if the timing is not right and the conditions are not right.

So I wait ........ and breathe.  For this self-admitted control freak, that is a challenge. 

Thursday, February 21, 2013

One of those nights

It's almost 5 in the morning and I've been up for almost two hours.  Bleah...I hate nights like this. 

So, to redeem the time at least a little, I thought I'd post a quick update.  First of all (and most importantly), my insurance company approved the spinal fusion surgery.  I am relieved to have it settled and am looking forward to getting through it to the other side and being much, much improved.

Another note of interest.  We had white stuff coming down as I drove home yesterday.  Not snow, exactly.  More like sleet, I guess.  It bounced off the windows and car.  Anyway, when I got home I snapped a picture of the house from the driveway, just to prove that we had, indeed, had some white stuff. 

You have to look at this picture very closely, particularly the roof of the house.  Then look again.  See it?  Ha ha, welcome to winter in Memphis, Tennessee!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Monday recap

So, it's been a tough week in some ways.  I am in limbo over my pending back surgery, because my lovely insurance company has not yet decided they are going to approve it.  It weighs heavily on my mind, and I just want it to all be settled, to be able to have the surgery, and go about the process of healing and improving my life's quality.  If you are a praying person, I would appreciate prayers to that end.

Today, though, I have been given a gift, so to speak.  The law firm I work for gives President's Day as one of its holidays!  So...  My big plans include a trip to the dentist (woo hoo) and plenty of cuddling with Hobbes and Chance.  The almost-constant numbness in my legs prevents me from doing a lot of other things I might really enjoy. 

So, I will enjoy my quiet and peaceful house today.  I'll have another cup of coffee.

Then I'll go check on Chance, snoozing in the study.

Oops, looks like I woke him up.  Now he's ready to go back outside.

Hobbes is ready to play this morning, as always.

And as for me, I think I'll light a candle and read a good book today.  Hope your Monday is pleasant, where ever you find yourself. 

Friday, February 8, 2013

Chance and Hobbes

My baby went to the groomer today. 

He came home sporting a red kerchief with hearts. 

Of course, Hobbes had to get in the picture too. 

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Preparing for back surgery

After much back and forth discussion, I have decided to have back surgery.  This may well be the hardest decision I've ever made, and it has been a long road getting to this place of acceptance. 

A little background:  The neurostimulator implant, which I fervently hoped would be the answer to my prayers, was denied by my insurance company.  They said I didn't meet the criteria.  So, my doctor and I started taking the steps necessary to appeal the decision and push to have it done.  One of those steps was for me to get a second opinion on the prognosis and advisability of getting a stim implant.  

I went to an orthopedic surgeon recommended by my neurologist to get the second opinion.  And that's where everything took a decidedly left turn.  This doctor said that I'm not a good candidate for the stim.  He said I have a mechanical problem in my spine, and it needs to be fixed surgically.  He said I have an extremely good chance to fully recover from the surgery and to be walking two miles a day by three months out from the surgery.  He said I really only have two options -- to have the surgery or not have the surgery and continue on like I am.

Needless to say, this rocked my world, and not in a good way.  The Bright and Shining Hope of a stim implant died a quick and painful death.  I knew that once the insurance company knew what this doctor said, any hope of a stim implant was dead in the water.  

The good news, and the glimmer of hope that I now cling to, is that this doctor does 2-3 of this type of surgery every week and has done so for 19 years.  He has so much confidence in his ability to fix the problems and in my ability to heal, that I am drawing confidence from him.  I have a much different feeling about surgery now than I ever have.

So.............we have a surgery date scheduled:  March 5th.  I am anxious and hopeful, dreading it terribly, and wishing it were far behind me.  Lots of emotions right now!  It is going to be a two-level spinal fusion, and there will be "hardware" involved -- metal screws and rods.  I will get more details when I go for my next appointment with the surgeon. 

But for now, my "Boy Scout" husband (Mr. Always Prepared) is helping me get ready for the weeks and months following the surgery.  He's ordering things from Amazon which will make my life easier, and I'm reading everything I can to help me prepare.  After surgery, I'll be under a 3-month "BLT" restriction, which means no bending, lifting, or twisting, so there is some preparation required.

But, for now ... I'm dreaming my dreams.  Of walking around the block.  Of going shopping for more than 10 minutes at a time.   Of standing up to put my makeup on or dry my hair.  Not such big dreams to most people, I know, but to me, they're huge.