Sunday, April 7, 2013

On the mend

13 days post spinal fusion

I am definitely on the mend. It is a relief. Two weeks tomorrow is a long time, but finally I can definitely see, feel and notice small improvements in all aspects of me both physically and mentally. Phew!

As advised by the hospital, we took my bandages off permanently yesterday. There is no dressing on my wound now. My sister spent 20 long minutes soaking it all off and delicately peeling away the layers off to reveal a very neat incision.

My first tattoo was directly over the sight of incision and whilst I never mentioned it to the surgeon, I did wonder what it would look like afterwards. I am delighted! My surgeon is an artist! Such a neat, thin, straight wound. 19cms straight through my tattoo, but it has been precisely sewn back together and looks amazing (if cut in half!).

Since the bandages have come off, it was become very swollen, but conversely I have noticed an improvement in my core movement - the dressings were restricting me like a corset. I can now twist and bend a little further than I could before. Although it is scary with them off, I am constantly worried about nudging it and what my waistband will do to it.

It feels like I notice more numb ('blank') skin on a daily basis. The top of my thighs, buttocks and all over my back are just a swirling mass of skin with sensation mixing into 'blank' skin. When someone else touches my 'blank' skin, it feels like it should be 2 ins thick and muffled, but when I touch it, it is just skin. The boundaries between sensation and 'blank' skin seem to burn.. You know when it snows and you go outside without gloves and your fingers get so cold, that when you come back inside, they seem to burn as they warm up? That burning is the sensation all over my back, thighs and buttocks, as something touches the boundaries between my skin with sensation and my 'blank' skin. For example, pulling pants on, or sitting in a chair, burns until I am still. It is weird. I hope it settles down.

Paul took the kidlets to visit his sister and his dad in Cardiff this weekend, leaving me to recuperate on my own with my parents. Everyone needed a change of scenery. It has been quiet and restorative here. I have swung wildly between missing them like crazy and being relived at the peace. Before they went they had taken to putting on puppet shows for me, and I am eagerly awaiting their return tonight.

Range of movement on day 13/ improvements from day 8:
* Walking is still a slow shuffle with walking sticks, although I think I may be getting quicker. Stairs are definitely less of a challenge.
* I am now sturdy enough to shower myself, although I cant dress my lower half.
* 'Log rolling' in and out of bed gets easier every time I do it.
* Bending to sit is still getting easier, although it still gets worse as the day goes on
* I am still unable to bend because my back is too stiff. We are still putting my food plate on a tin to raise it up for me to eat without bending, and I brush my teeth using a pot to spit into etc.
* I have talk about my wound - it is swollen and bruised and tender and itchy, but healthy and neat.
* I have also talked about my 'blank' skin. I just hope it starts to improve, it is a horrible sensation.
* My feet are cold ALL of time. I have never experienced this before and can only blame the surgery, although I don't know why. Hot wallies rule the world!

All in all I am pleased with how things are on day 13. When I think about my fears beforehand, I have found the pain to be very real, but also very manageable.
I seem to have escaped all of the warnings that could have gone wrong during surgery, for the short term at least.

Most importantly, I have not felt any of the old pain from beforehand at any point and I am starting to dare to believe that I will actually get better and go on to be pain free.

Slowly, softly, surely, stronger, bigger and better.

Thanks for reading xxx

1 comment:

  1. Your positivity is really inspiring, you rock!