Today I went to the park with my brother and we went to the cafe. This was a big deal to me, since I had set it as one of my targets to achieve before Christmas but didn't really think it would be possible. On Tuesday it will be 8 weeks since I had my surgery (and Christmas eve too....which is rather more exciting!). My brother rather gently reminded me that I hadn't actually posted any updates for a while and so I took the gentle rebuke and here I am, blogging again.
So...where am I? Well, you're wrong, regarding the cafe, I got there and back again (rather like Bilbo Baggins) and I'm now in my comfy chair, which is pretty much where I've been for the last 3 hours. Going out is tough on a girl you know. Actually, I don't think it would be quite as bad if I didn't use sticks ironically, as its my thoracic fusion which is protesting the most - probably due to the 10 extra screws that are in there ...and yes, no typo, I said 10 and I meant it!
I saw my surgeon for a check up recently and he told me that my bottom joint was completely degenerated - apparently something of a shock to him as he hadn't realised how bad it was before! There were 2 reasons to this:
1. The scan didn't look quite that bad ...and
2. I wasn't complaining enough about the pain..
So, that was the bottom, and then there was the top. Again, he encountered a bit more than he expected since my 'failed bone graft' that was spotted about 2 years ago, apparently was a graft that had never taken in the first place. I have been wandering around quite happily since 2006 with the only thing connecting the top and bottom of my back being the end of a rod and a single screw. I think it was for this reason he whacked in another 2 rods at the top, to be as sturdy as possible. He put 2 more in at the bottom as well to give as much stability to the joint as possible. He reminded me that I have had 2 lots of major spinal surgery rolled into one, since normally he would not do this as a single operation and I really should take it easy for another 6 weeks. I reminded him that I was impatient and wanted to do stuff...we reached a compromise and I can do some stuff but not much. Limits include lifting stuff but no more that 20lb (by the time I next see him at the end of January) and not twisting under any circumstances. Ever since I had my op in 2006 twisting has involved turning my head and reaching backwards with my arms, but I didn't realise that I did have a little twist left.....but I don't now!
Some good news was that because my bone graft hadn't taken, he used the opportunity to straighten out a little of my curve at the top and try and get good saggital balance at the bottom. Amazingly, he succeeded so well, that for the first time since I was about 14 years old, my weight distribution is roughly equal through both legs...53%/47% according to the Wii fit!
Little bits of other news...I'm off all the high powered pain meds and managing pain with small amounts of codeine and paracetamol (Tylenol for those across the pond!) - probably (definitely) smaller amounts than pre operation - I know I'm not very active at the moment, so maybe that's why, but its rather encouraging. Day by day I do a bit more and today I had my walk in the park...how great is that?!