You Have to Laugh

or you'll cry yourself to death.  o.k. background 1983, pulled muscles in my back catching a paitent while pregnant, never did heal right. around 85 popped three disc, they went back in after a couple of weeks and lots of pain. slowly had to start changing life style. by 92 couldn't take it anymore couldn't work as a nurse anymore, and was having trouble attending school (pre vet), had alot of back and radiating pain, taking a couple of t3's a day, thought it couldn't get much worse.(wrong)! so i had surgery, a simple fussion, i would lose a couple degress of flexability at the most. but while they were cleaning out the disc spaces they somehow managed to put seven holes in three dirrerent areas of my large and small intestines. which lead not only to a tempery ostomy, but an infected back and whats called a failed back surgery (nice way of saying your worse off now). so here we are almost sixteen years, and 25+ surgeries later.(we quit counting in 96). i have learned never to rate my pain at a 10(worst pain you can imagine), because my body will go out of it's way to prove me wrong. pain now rules my life, it wakes my up every 2-3 hours, keeps me company all day, and makes sleep hard to find. it determines when or if i eat (i'm one of those lucky people that scar really got so i have ton of adhesions that make any movement of my intestines painfull). there was a period of 1-2 yrs. when i basically stoped eatting, good thing was lost weight and stopped having my cycle. bad was that i stopped making my own red blood cells and had to keep getting transfusions. the kids call it the famine mom years. so what is life like now?  even though i currently take 60mgs of morphine 2xday, and 6-8 percs life hurts. moving, sitting, driving, eatting, somedays even breathing.  i don't go out much anymore not only due to pain but nerve damage causes me to lose control of my bodily functions sometimes (thank god for the cool new adult daipers).  the only thing that keeps me going is my crazy family.  they not only give me a hand or a hug when i need it but keep me laughing both at them and myself. others things that help are anything that can take you away from yourself, areally good book,movieor music.  one of my favorite is Phantom of the Opera (POTO), the movie and music are so haunting and beautiful and Gerard Butler is nothing to sneaze at either (also was king leonides in 300, oh yeah, all that and a beauiful singing voice too).  anyway back to topic (as she wipes the drowl off chin) i crank up my mp3 and get lost in the music. i've wondered about alternative treatment accupuncture/presure, meditation ect. started biofeed back but it's two hours one way to the vets. Don't have regular insurance so get all my care through the VA. if anyone was had luck with these options or knows someone please reply.  cause after16 yrs of nasty 24 hour pain, it's hard to imagine many more. as it is my surgion and i are trying to decide if and when my next surgery will be.  i have two partcial obstructions, but am also recovering from having a kidney removed couple of months ago, problums from a previous infection caused by a huge kidney stone ( didn't feel either till it was real bad due to 'normal' abd and back pain).enough of this crying in the beer stuff, but i don't talk to alot of outside people,(not only don;t go out much, but don;t like to show pain or weakness to others). but this is different since i don't have to look you in the face. anyway i'm gonna curl up with Mr. Butler  (as i sat to long And my leg is part asllep and part on fire), and hopefuul ave some good dreams.

sbigay sbigay
46-50, F
1 Response Apr 12, 2008

Hi sbigay. I'm sorry to hear of the pain you're in. A big hug from me. I've had 7 lower back and three cervical surgeries. Had to learn how to walk again. I've had to have my colon removed but I was lucky because the surgeon was able to use my small intestine and attach it to my pooper. I belong to an Internet group called j-pouch. They are a great support group who has answered many questions about my colon removal and digestive track problems. ( People with all sorts of digestion problems and different type of colon, small intestine, and stomach surgeries are on this site.)

I have had training in stress management, relaxation, and hypnosis. I use all three to help with my pain and other health problems. I also go to a therapeutic pool for stretching my neck and back muscles. It's just 5 mins from home and it only cost $5 for 45 mins. Search around your areas and see if there's a pt place that has a heated therapeutic pool with open swim. The pool needs to be warm to benefit tense, stiff muscles. Massage also helps me. I look for specials or chair massage at malls where you pay for 15 mins to half an hour.

I've had epidurals, it helped, but did not last. I'm not on pain medication, or muscle relaxation meds because these meds slow the intestines down. I take Advil and Advil PM along with a prescription sleeping pill 5 mg, but I only take 1/2 of a pill. With Heating pad, special bed pillows and sleeping pills helps me get at least 4 or 5 hours asleep.

Pain is a drag that can take over your life. If you have pain 24-7 it can wear you down. Mentally busy like you, listening to music helps and it sounds like you have a great family for support, hugs and laughs too. I happy you have your family to help. I hope your husband health improves. With hope, love and laughter it makes it a little bit better. You are absolutely, positively, incredibly amazing person. Keeping it real. From Prouder.