Back Pain

is an exhausting condition to live with. Not only do the drugs I take to try and make the pain less, make me really sleepy and fuzzy, but just the constant mind over matter about the pain is exhausting. And boring too.

Last Sunday I vacuumed the house. On Monday Kris and I started Couch to 5K and ran for a whole whopping 8 minutes. Then later, we picked up Fern, walked around the Japanese Gardens in Portland, went to the Cavalia show and spent a few hours in the car driving to and fro.  On Tuesday we went to the coast and walked on the beach and of course spent a few hours in the car driving there and back again. We swung by a really cool light show out in Newton, I believe.

Wednesday morning I woke up with bad pain. I could hardly get my slippers on since I have to pull them on over my heel.  I did some gentle stretches but had a hard time getting down on the floor and back up again. I did take a shower, I was so determined to not let the pain stop me from going to work, but as I held onto the shower wall to try and step out of the tub, and then paused to catch my breath after holding it in through the pain, I decided I was being foolish and needed to rest.  I spent the day drugged and in bed.  Like clockwork, the pain meds would wear off and I’d get up, get a drink, take more meds and go back to sleep.

Thursday I managed to make it into to work.  I had to move slow and pause after standing from a sit, in order to let the muscle spasms subside.  It was not fun.  I was starting to feel a little better that night so Kris and I went to the Kaizer light show in a small neighborhood. Apparently that was a bad idea.  On Friday I made it to work but only lasted an hour before I realized there was no way I was going to be able to concentrate.  As soon as I turned off my Tens unit, the pain would come back full force and I had already taken a Tramadol which is the only drug I had that didn’t make me completely fuzzy.  So I called Kris and went home to spend another day in bed on drugs.  Saturday morning I got up and told Kris I needed to go see a doctor because the meds I had were not cutting down the pain and it wasn’t getting better.  So he took me to Urgent Care where I got two shots, one for pain and one as a muscle relaxant.  He also prescribed me an NSAID to help with the inflammation.  I did begin to feel better on Saturday afternoon and wasn’t spending as much time in bed but I still could not sit for any length of time without significant pain.

Sunday saw more improvement and we went to our friend’s house for Christmas dinner.  After a few hours of sitting all I wanted to do was go home and lie down.  That’s the only position that is comfortable and without significant pain.

I hate that I can’t be as active as I want to be.  I hate that I have pain and it’s both mentally and physically exhausting.  Not to mention very demotivating.  I always have to weigh the pain level versus the activity to decide if it’s worth that little bit of extra pain.  Which tends to lead to me sitting on the couch surfing Netflix trying to find something to watch. And if I’m laying flat on my back, even on the couch, it’s hard to view the computer screen to watch.  I know, I know, what a travesty right?  Well I don’t have many options and I hate it!

I WANT to be healthy. I WANT to go on hikes up mountain sides and I WANT to be a runner.  But I can’t.  At least not without facing the consequences afterwards.  I really wish there was something that could keep my back from spasming and seizing up on me.  As I sit here typing this, I have a strong throbbing pain in my left lower back. And according to all the doctors I’ve seen, there is no cure, there is no surgery that can help. I am doomed to live with pain FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE. I’m only 36.  I’ve already lived with this for 12 years… and I have what, another 50 to go?  Fuck.