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Thread: Anyone else feel this way?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    460

    Anyone else feel this way?

    I feel like I'm walking around with a big black cloud hanging over me every day, feeling very low and depressed. I just keep thinking that right now I have little or no pain, and yet soon I'll probably be walking into a hospital, and leaving like a cripple with God knows what kind of pain afterward and steel hardware in my back. I keep looking at my little boys and wishing that this time wasn't going to be taken away from them with me while they are still young and relying on me so much. I keep asking why why why? Do I really have to have this done? What will happen if I don't? I guess basically I know that my curve is progressing aggressively, so does that mean that I would eventually look extremely deformed, and would I definitely have a ton of pain without surgery? At night, I lay there in bed thinking of all this over and over, wondering am I doing the right thing? So bloody scared, for my kids, and for myself.
    Lynette - 44 years old.

    Pre-surgery thoracic 55 degrees
    Pre-surgery lumbar 85 degrees

    Post-surgery thoracic 19 degrees
    Post-surgery lumbar 27 degrees

    Surgery April 1st 2010.

    Posterior spinal fusion from T9 to sacrum.
    Dr. Cronen at University Community Hospital - Tampa, FL.

  2. #2
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    May 2008
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    Central NJ
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    Quote Originally Posted by LynetteG View Post
    I feel like I'm walking around with a big black cloud hanging over me every day, feeling very low and depressed. I just keep thinking that right now I have little or no pain, and yet soon I'll probably be walking into a hospital, and leaving like a cripple with God knows what kind of pain afterward and steel hardware in my back. I keep looking at my little boys and wishing that this time wasn't going to be taken away from them with me while they are still young and relying on me so much. I keep asking why why why? Do I really have to have this done? What will happen if I don't? I guess basically I know that my curve is progressing aggressively, so does that mean that I would eventually look extremely deformed, and would I definitely have a ton of pain without surgery? At night, I lay there in bed thinking of all this over and over, wondering am I doing the right thing? So bloody scared, for my kids, and for myself.
    Lynette,

    first of all, let me send you a (((Hug))). The simple answer to your question--YES, we've all felt like that at times. Do you honestly think that people can prepare themselves mentally for this surgery without feeling sorry for themselves, even if it's just for a teeny bit? I'd say the first 3-4 weeks after I discovered what was in store for me, I felt exactly as you did. I thought my world was ending. I was terribly affraid. I had several months before the surgery, and after some time, I felt more accepting of it--knowing that honestly I had no choice because if I didn't I would eventually have terrible quality of life.

    You WILL pull yourself out of the black cloud and do what you have to--if not for you, for those little boys who need you. You have to be strong and do it because no one can step in and do it for you.

    Everyone needs time to 'mourn' what we think we will lose and feel sorry for ourselves. But in order to get thru this surgery and heal successfully, you have to have a POSITIVE attitude. You don't want those little boys picking up on your fear.
    __________________________________________
    Debbe - 50 yrs old

    Milwalkee Brace 1976 - 79
    Told by Dr. my curve would never progress

    Surgery 10/15/08 in NYC by Dr. Michael Neuwirth
    Pre-Surgury Thorasic: 66 degrees
    Pre-Surgery Lumbar: 66 degrees

    Post-Surgery Thorasic: 34 degrees
    Post-Surgery Lumbar: 22 degrees

  3. #3
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    Jan 2009
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    Ames, Iowa
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    Debbe's advice is excellent. You really need to have a positive attitude going in. I listened to relaxation tapes--Peggy Huddleston--that seemed to ease some of my tension. It sounds like your hypnosis tapes should be helpful in that area. Believe me, I had lots anxieties & and played horrible movies through my head. If I had to do it over again, I'd have done it sooner. Curves would have been less progressed and I would have been younger. But we deal with what we've got. If you have faith in your surgeon and all the help and prayers coming from us and your family and friends, I think you'll do great! Janet
    Janet

    61 years old--57 for surgery

    Diagnosed in 1965 at age of 13--no brace
    Thoracic Curve: 96 degrees to 35 degrees
    Lumbar Curve: 63 degrees to 5 degrees
    Surgery with Dr. Lenke in St. Louis--March 30, 2009
    T-2 to Pelvis, and hopefully all posterior procedure.

    All was posterior along with 2 cages and 6 osteotomies.

  4. #4
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    near Philadelphia
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    After I scheduled my own surgery, I felt like I'd made an appointment to be stabbed and beaten -- or hit by a bus. Our instinct in life is to protect ourselves from harm, and signing up for this surgery guarantees that we're walking into a painful situation. The anticipation is very hard because you're focused on an unknown future, and that's a very fearful place to be. Once you've had the surgery, you live in the present once again, and everything seems more manageable.

    Believe me, if I could do this, anyone can!!
    Chris
    A/P fusion on June 19, 2007 at age 52; T10-L5
    Pre-op thoracolumbar curve: 70 degrees
    Post-op curve: 12 degrees
    Dr. Boachie-adjei, HSS, New York

  5. #5
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    Houston, TX
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    Debbe and Janet ... I'm so proud of of y'all. Chris, you've always inspired me.

    Lynette, it's normal to be scared- even when you've tried every OTHER scary thing. I'd subjected myself to every other avenue for pain relief ... and while I wanted fusion so badly (because it was the only chance left), I was unsure what it would bring.

    For me, it simply came down to an elimination game: The pain goes, or I (may) go.

    Remember this, sweetheart ... we're supposed to enjoy our time here ... our family ... our friends. Although no one around me knew it, I was tolerating life during my pre-fusion days (and it's not in my nature to see things that way). I'd trade 1000 surgeries/recoveries to never be in that helpless state again. Chronic pain can bring some awfully destructive thoughts.

    Pam
    Fusion is NOT the end of the world.
    AIDS Walk Houston 2008 5K @ 33 days post op!


    41, dx'd JIS & Boston braced @ 10
    Pre-op 53, Post-op < 20
    Fused 2/5/08, T4-L1 ... Darrell S. Hanson, Houston


    VIEW MY X-RAYS
    EMAIL ME

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Topeka, KS
    Posts
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    I know completely how you feel! While I'm in St. Louis after having surgery on Mar 1st our son will celebrate his 14th birthday. That will be very hard for me to be away from him, both of us, as we are all three very close! But, when I get back I will have his Graduation from 8th Grade in May to look forward to. And, maybe I won't be as miserable as I am tonight - or at least in a different, straighter sorta way. So, I've had a couple "moments" of feel sorry for me moments believe me, but you can linger on those - we have to do what we have to do. We have to get better for our younger people - they depend on us. And, if that means we are apart for a short period of time then that is what it takes. We will just appreciate the fact that we will be much better to enjoy them when we return once we recover. Does that make sense?

  7. #7
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    Nov 2007
    Location
    Houston, TX
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    Lynette,

    Don't worry about us (and, yes ... I'm going out on a limb here) post-ops. Your experience affects us only in the sense that we want to make it easier for you.

    You aren't bringing anyone down. You're generally upbeat and we all have rough nights. Accept the fact we won't break rank for imagined whining.
    Fusion is NOT the end of the world.
    AIDS Walk Houston 2008 5K @ 33 days post op!


    41, dx'd JIS & Boston braced @ 10
    Pre-op 53, Post-op < 20
    Fused 2/5/08, T4-L1 ... Darrell S. Hanson, Houston


    VIEW MY X-RAYS
    EMAIL ME

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Posts
    460
    Thanks Pam, you are a huge inspiration to me. I look your matter-of-fact down-to-earth advice - much much appreciated
    Lynette - 44 years old.

    Pre-surgery thoracic 55 degrees
    Pre-surgery lumbar 85 degrees

    Post-surgery thoracic 19 degrees
    Post-surgery lumbar 27 degrees

    Surgery April 1st 2010.

    Posterior spinal fusion from T9 to sacrum.
    Dr. Cronen at University Community Hospital - Tampa, FL.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    3,263
    I hope you're sleeping peacefully as I write this! You've received some great advice here and I endorse it all. There is one thing that hasn't been mentioned and I almost hesitate to say it because it seems that I was the only person here to avail myself of this kind of help.

    I was diagnosed with Graves Disease just about the time I had my first appt. with my surgeon. Graves Disease makes you more nervy and makes your heart pound and gives you palpitations which wasn't helping. I was discussing it with my GP a couple of months later when I started crying. I couldn't help myself. She was great, and after a talk and some assurance that I wasn't a complete baby, I walked out with a prescription for an anti-anxiety medication. It was very helpful. I stayed on it until my surgery. I coped so much better after that. I slept better too, which I think is important since when you're sleep-deprived, everything seems so much worse.

    Some might think it was the easy way through this time and in fact it was. It gave me courage and the ability to look ahead to a time when the surgery was over and I was well again. I recommend it for those who're having a difficult time, as I was.
    Last edited by JenniferG; 02-22-2010 at 02:16 AM.
    Surgery March 3, 2009 at almost 58, now 63.
    Dr. Askin, Brisbane, Australia
    T4-Pelvis, Posterior only
    Osteotomies and Laminectomies
    Was 68 degrees, now 22 and pain free

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Posts
    460
    Thanks Jennifer G, I appreciate your advice. I'm trying to not go on anti-anxiety medication, and use hypnosis instead. I'll see how I get on, most of the time I can cope pretty well, last night everything just seemed to slam down on top of me!
    Lynette - 44 years old.

    Pre-surgery thoracic 55 degrees
    Pre-surgery lumbar 85 degrees

    Post-surgery thoracic 19 degrees
    Post-surgery lumbar 27 degrees

    Surgery April 1st 2010.

    Posterior spinal fusion from T9 to sacrum.
    Dr. Cronen at University Community Hospital - Tampa, FL.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Georgia
    Posts
    241
    Lynette - I'm sorry you're having such a heavy load to carry. Thank you for sharing so openly so folks on the forum can be of suppport. I'll be praying for you.
    Glenda
    Age 66 Georgia (63 at time of surgery)
    Bi-lateral laminectomy 2006
    Kyphoscoliosis, approx 38* lumbar scoliosis, stenosis, disk herniations, lower back and hip pain, w/radiating pain, stinging and numbness in legs.
    A/P fusion (T10-S2) 5/17/10 and 5/20/10
    Dr Yoon, Emory Orthopaedic and Spine Hospital, Atlanta, GA
    Pleased with outcome

  12. #12
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    Oct 2005
    Location
    Chicago north suburb
    Posts
    772
    I would suggest you get some counseling before you proceed with this sugery. Perhaps delaying this surgery for now would be in your best interest.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New Bern, NC
    Posts
    1,445
    [QUOTE=LynetteG;92879]

    I've tried very hard all my life to live a good honest life, be the best mom I can possibly be, and I was a very supportive wife to my ex, even though he goes round saying otherwise to everyone. Just don't know why God is challenging me to the hilt like this.
    Hi LynetteG,
    It does seems that sometimes God is challenging us to the hilt. If you are a believer, which I think you are, then you know that when God is testing us, it is because he loves us and wants us to put all our trust in Him. You only need faith as a grain of mustard seed and He will do the rest. Easier said than done, and yes, you have a right to question God. I will be praying for you.
    Sally
    Diagnosed with severe lumbar scoliosis at age 65.
    Posterior Fusion L2-S1 on 12/4/2007. age 67
    Anterior Fusion L3-L4,L4-L5,L5-S1 on 12/19/2007
    Additional bone removed to decompress right side of L3-L4 & L4-L5 on 4/19/2010
    New England Baptist Hospital, Boston, MA
    Dr. Frank F. Rands735.photobucket.com/albums/ww360/butterflyfive/

    "In God We Trust" Happy moments, praise God. Difficult moments, seek God. Quiet moments, worship God. Painful moments, trust God. Every moment, thank God.

  14. #14
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    Mar 2009
    Location
    Sacramento, CA area
    Posts
    189

    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by Singer View Post
    After I scheduled my own surgery, I felt like I'd made an appointment to be stabbed and beaten -- or hit by a bus. Our instinct in life is to protect ourselves from harm, and signing up for this surgery guarantees that we're walking into a painful situation. The anticipation is very hard because you're focused on an unknown future, and that's a very fearful place to be. Once you've had the surgery, you live in the present once again, and everything seems more manageable.

    Believe me, if I could do this, anyone can!!
    ------------------------------------------------
    Chris, these are words of wisdom! I really agree with you. I am about to make the decision to have my surgery as well, likely later this year. Just thinking about it is making me so anxious, like why do I want to cause myself pain? Am I crazy? Do I really need to do this? Of course I know that I want to have it but I would rather go on a cruise...
    Laurie
    Age 57
    Posterior fusion w/thoracoplasty T2-L3 Oct 1, 2010
    Thoracic curve corrected from 61* to 16*
    Lumbar curve, unknown measurement
    Disfiguring back hump GONE!!
    Dr Munish Gupta
    UC Davis Medical Center, Sacramento, CA

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Houston, TX
    Posts
    1,757
    Quote Originally Posted by lray View Post
    Of course I know that I want to have it but I would rather go on a cruise...
    LMAO. That about sums it up.
    Fusion is NOT the end of the world.
    AIDS Walk Houston 2008 5K @ 33 days post op!


    41, dx'd JIS & Boston braced @ 10
    Pre-op 53, Post-op < 20
    Fused 2/5/08, T4-L1 ... Darrell S. Hanson, Houston


    VIEW MY X-RAYS
    EMAIL ME

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