View Full Version : Two-year Post Op Anniversary December 7

12-24-2012, 05:17 PM
I want to wish everyone a healthy and happy new year 2013!

My surgery was a life-changing event for both me and my family. Now, I can walk and stand as much as I want without pain. Since my surgery, my “cane seat” has been in the closet. Before the surgery, I hardly left home to travel or shop without it.

I would say I am about 90% pain free. But, any pain I have is more aches or tightening in the back. I don’t have the pain running down my leg. The unusual referred pain I had going from the top of my surgical site around to my upper abdomen is mostly gone. I notice that, when I am under a lot of stress, I can get the pain in my abdomen but it is nothing like what I had after surgery. I am still going for acupuncture once or twice a month just to be sure the pain doesn’t return. I really believe that the acupuncture helped to relieve the pain when nothing else except lying down did. Once I realized my headaches were caused by my position at my desktop computer, the headaches from the occipital nerve ended also.

Doing Svaroopa yoga has helped me with my suppleness. After two years, I can tie my shoes in the center of the shoe and can sit in a “crooked leg” position. I am careful with a spinal twist and use a block under the elbow of the opposite direction to which I am lying. But, I do have some twist motion.

I have hiked which I never did in my life and enjoyed it. Last summer, I kayaked and biked. I did buy a new bike so I am sitting upright instead of leaning over. My husband and I have a tandem kayak and I get in the front. How I do it isn’t very elegant, but I get in and sit down and I’m fine. I also sailed in our daysailer and moved back and forth across the center board on my knees so I didn’t have to bend.

Surgery has changed how I bend, but that is a small price to pay for the rewards I have gotten post surgery. I still use the grabber when I am too lazy to get down on one or both knees.

This winter, I look forward to cross-country skiing, which I had done before surgery, and trying snowshoeing, which was impossible before because it was like walking.

I want to thank all the people on the Forum who were cheering me on and giving me the confidence to go ahead with the surgery. The first 6 months to one year wasn’t easy, but the freedom I have in my life now was worth it and you were there to support me. I am always willing to do the same for people considering surgery or who want support now. I have been in touch with some people, who are new to the Forum.

At this season of reflection, I am truly blessed with a reconstructed back that helps me live a more “normal” life, as far as all the pain I endured for so many years. On May 4, my first grandchild was born. I am able to take her for a walk in the carriage without concern for how long I can walk. Getting on the floor is a challenge. Any suggestions??? Because of the screws into my sacrum, I really can’t sit on the floor but low chairs seem to work or sitting on yoga blocks.

December 7 has world-wide historical significance but it has specific significance to me.

12-24-2012, 08:30 PM
Oh, Irene, I am so happy for you. As you know, but new people to the forum don't, we were going through the pre-surgery worries and "what-ifs" at the same time and the recovery, as well. I still miss hearing from some of the other regulars on the forum back then who have moved on with their lives and seldom post. I just can't break away yet and hope to be a support to the new people on the forum. Thank goodness for the people like Ed, JenniferG, Sally, and many others who still offer their optimism and advice. I probably would have backed out of the surgery if it hadn't been for this forum. It takes guts to elect to have major back surgery, in my opinion, and I'm happy that I did it. I know that at one year post-op my tennis shoe bows were all on the side. Like you, I can also tie them without any difficulty in the center of the shoe! I have definitely noticed improvements during the second year. I'm hoping for a good report on Jan. 16th.

Your post was very uplifting to read! Enjoy your vacation to Sarasota in February. John is having foot surgery, so we'll have to wait until 2014 to go back to Florida. Keep in touch!

12-24-2012, 09:01 PM
Congrats on your recovery. I really enjoy reading your positive posts. Especially as my surgery approachs. Maggie

12-24-2012, 11:42 PM
Your post was very uplifting! I am 66 and trying to decide whether or not to have surgery. I have had LOTS of "bandaid" procedures, so feel pretty good right now, but I know that this is just a honeymoon phase.

Sounds like you are very active....and I used to be. I used to backpack and hike alot. I did manage to go sea kayaking with my daughter a month ago.

Have a very Merry Christmas and the best for the New Year....and thanks again for sharing.


12-25-2012, 07:59 AM
I am having surgery on January 7, and reading all these positive posts is really helping me to have a more positive attitude about my future. Than you all for continuing to post well after your recovery. I am not physically a five, always used my scoliosis as an excuse for not doing things I really did not have much of any interest in doing anyway. Looking forward to be able to walk a good distance without pain,especially while on vacation. My husband is not one for walking on a daily basis,but on vacation he walks like he is inahurry to get somewhere and I just can't keep up with him. Hoping that will change. Oh, Christmas and I just looked outside, it's snowing. I pray that's now will or stop my surgery. Going to stop now, I'm babbling.


12-25-2012, 10:34 AM
I had many shots, or bandaid procedures for many years. In addition, I had PT, chiropractic, yoga therapy, and acupuncture. Some worked and some didn't for short periods. I used to walk with my thumb in my periformis just to reduce the pain. I think what put me over the top in deciding to have the surgery was four months where I couldn't stand up straight or sit up straight in a chair. From my old postings, you might read that I took a beach chair wherever I went. It was interesting going to a restaurant and reclining. I bought a chair height beach chair.

Once I got an appointment with Dr. Rand, he prescribed facet joint shots, which no other dr I had gone to during that period had done. The shots worked and I was out of my acute situation. After that, I lived in the fear that this could happen again. I think it may have started with sailing when I had my body in one direction and my head was looking the other way. It didn't take much to set me off.

Before I had the surgery, someone told me to think about whether I would like to have pain that I "knew" wouldn't go away, or pain that would get gradually better and go away. I made the trade.

It is an individual decision and a tough one. Recovery isn't easy and, just as our bodies are different, so is the healing process and the "gotcha's" along the way.

The freedom to walk and stand is amazing. Just to be able to stand in the airport or walk around to tour on vacation is freeing.

Good luck!